I did a basic how-to article for the most recent issue of Make magazine on "How to Make Square Holes in Aluminum Sheet Metal" They have it up for free on their website, might be of interest to some...
And yes, there are certainly a lot more ways to make square holes than shown! They trimmed the web article down to about 5 methods for the print version, so I doubt I could have put even more methods in...
The hand nibbler in that article really sucks. MMC sells it for $21.00. Don't even think of buying one. Radio Shack (of all places) in the US (along with many others) sells a far more refined product at half the price shown in the shot below;
Funny, the hand nibbler I've had for over 35 years looks just like the one you just panned, and it's always done ok by me.
Maybe they made 'em a lot better back then.
I couldn't resist touring through your photo galleries, you sure do take GREAT pictures.
Could you please tell me what breed of cat "Plato" is? I ask because about three years ago an engineer neighbor of mine working at GE's jet engine division had to go down to San Paulo to integrate one of their engines into a new commuter plane being built there. He took his wife and kids with him and asked if we would board their cat for the three months he expected to be there.
One thing led to another, and they never returned here from Brazil, so the cat became ours. I've never bothered to find out what breed he is, but he looks just like Plato. Here's a photo of him. He is facinated to have been born into an era of industry and uses mechanical assistance to help him catch mice.
He can still bring home the bunnies by himself though. SWMBO hit "high C" last year when she opened the door for him and he trotted in and dropped this one on her feet:
Also, the 35+ year old design leaves a signature that shouts "A NIBBLER WUZ HERE" even after filing and sanding/brushing. With the new ones, even on aluminum, there are no leftover telltale scrapes and deep abrasions on either side of the work piece to worry about. It's as though a sharp punch or minature shear press was used.
Not really, that's part of why I remove it on the nibbler used for trimming a rough opening to the finish line. The nibbler with the U-shaped stripper plate left on cuts out the rough opening because the modified one jams in a slot.