How to Cut Pegboard Without a Saw

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If you’re keen on optimizing space and organization, the pegboard is a tried-and-true ally. This perforated board, systematically dotted with holes, is tailor-made for pegs and hooks, which in turn, effortlessly hold tools and various household items. Now, while the default choice for many is to cut this board using a jigsaw or circular saw, it’s not the only option.

In scenarios where a saw isn’t within arm’s reach or you’re looking for alternatives, there are other effective tools to consider. In this guide, I’ll be shedding light on a method to skillfully cut a pegboard without the typical saw.

How to Cut Pegboard Without a Saw

If you want to cut a pegboard yet don’t have a saw, consider using the steps listed below.

Step 1: Gather Supplies

The first step is to gather all the supplies you’ll need to complete this process, including the following.

  • Measuring tape
  • Pencil or marker
  • Masking tape
  • Ruler (or any other straight object to use as a guide)
  • Utility knife/Dremel

Step 2: Take Measurements

Once you have all the supplies, the next step is to take measurements using the measuring tape. Then, grab the marker or pencil and make a straight line(s) on both sides of the pegboard where you need to make the cut.

A person using a white measuring tape and black pencil to measure a brown peg board

Make sure you double-check your measurements before marking the workpiece because the cleanliness of your cuts won’t matter if you start with the wrong measurements. This is true in any DIY project such as cutting a laminate flooring lengthwise before installing it.

It’s also important to cover the marked lines with masking tape, as it’ll help you prevent chipping during the cutting process. If you don’t have masking tape, you can opt for Frog tape for the same purpose.

Step 3: Start Making Cuts

You can start the cutting process after preparing the pegboard. Use any of the following methods to complete this step effectively.

Use a Utility Knife

Here’s a list of steps to cut a pegboard using a utility knife:

A person holding a utility knife with a blue handle on their left hand near a green plant
  1. Place the pegboard on a flat and stable surface.
  2. Use the utility knife to score along the marked lines with the help of the ruler or straight edge as a guide to keep the cut straight and even.
  3. Make several passes over the line to create a deeper groove.
  4. Flip the pegboard over and repeat on the opposite side. This will help ensure a clean cut through both sides.
  5. Apply pressure to the marked area of the pegboard as if you were trying to bend it using your knee as leverage. This will cause the board to snap along the scored line.
  6. However, the board might not separate completely and could be stuck at a right angle with a few fibers still holding it together. In this case, run the knife’s blade along the corner to cut the pegboard completely.
  7. Sand the edges with sandpaper or a sanding block (if necessary) to remove rough edges or splinters and smooth the cut surface.

You can also use it to cut laminate flooring and to cut a wooden dowel. If you don’t have a utility knife, you can use a box cutter or any other sharp cutting tool to cut the pegboard using the same technique. Just ensure you have a sharp blade and take your time to cut the board on both sides.

Use a Dremel

It’s possible to use a Dremel rotary tool to cut the pegboard. You’ll need to choose the right type of Dremel bit, such as a cut-off wheel or a 561 multipurpose cutting bit, depending on the type of cut you want to make.

The first bit-type will help you make accurate straight cuts, and if you want to make complex cuts or curves, the second one will be a better option.

A red and black Dremel was used to cut a brown board on top of a brown table

Here are the steps that you can follow to complete this process.

  1. Place the pegboard on a flat surface and use clamps to secure it properly. It’ll keep the board from moving so that you can make precise cuts.
  2. Take all the necessary precautions required to use a Dremel, such as putting on your PPE (Personal Protective Equipment), like eye protection and a dust mask, to protect yourself from debris.
  3. Insert the Dremel bit into the tool, following the manufacturer’s instructions.
  4. Turn on the Dremel tool and move it slowly along the marked lines, cutting through the pegboard. Avoid a fast and hard approach, as this may cause the pegboard to crack or the bit to break.
  5. Keep the tool slowly and take multiple breaks throughout the cutting process. It’ll prevent dust and debris from clogging the bit and ensure smoother, cleaner cuts.
  6. After cutting the pegboard, turn off the Dremel tool and remove the bit.
  7. Remove the masking or frog tape and start installing the board wherever needed.

Important Note: You can also use a side cutter Dremel tool, such as DSM20, to quickly and easily cut the pegboard.

Use the same technique to cut as many pegboards as you want. You can also use it to cut a quarter round and to cut a hockey stick. The Dremel is also ideal for cutting steel without a saw.

How to Take Measurements to Make Irregular Cuts on Pegboard

When it comes to taking irregular measurements to make complex cuts on the pegboard, using a contour gauge is the best option. It allows you to take precise measurements of irregular or round objects, making it easy to replicate their shape on the pegboard.

This tool comprises a series of thin plastic slices or teeth held together in a frame. To use it, simply push the comb side of the gauge against the irregular surface. It’ll adjust to the point of contact and provide an exact outline of the object.

Then, you can place the tool on the pegboard and use a marker or pencil to draw the outline. This will provide a precise guide for your cuts, ensuring your pegboard fits perfectly with the irregular object. You can then use a Dremel tool to cut the board.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Do You Cut a Metal Pegboard Without a Saw?

The best way to cut metal pegboard without a saw is to use a Dremel tool with a cut-off wheel rated to cut metals. It’ll allow you to make precise and clean cuts, but be sure to wear appropriate safety gear to protect yourself from sparks and metal shavings.

How Do You Avoid Chipping While Cutting Pegboard Without a Saw?

The best way to avoid chipping while cutting a pegboard without a saw is to place masking or frog tape on the marked lines before making the cuts. They’re easy to apply and remove and allow you to achieve smooth cuts.

Can You Use Scissors to Cut a Pegboard?

While it is technically possible to cut pegboard with scissors, it is not recommended as it can be a difficult and time-consuming process. It can also cause hand fatigue and dull the blades of your scissors quickly. Therefore, I recommend using the methods discussed in this guide.

Final Words

While cutting a pegboard without a saw can be a challenging task, it’s possible and can be done with minimal effort if you use the right techniques. The key is to plan ahead, take accurate measurements, and choose the right cutting tools for the job.

With patience, you can create clean, straight cuts and even customized shapes for your pegboard projects. I hope this guide has helped you to learn the basics of cutting pegboard without a saw, and I wish you all the best in your next DIY endeavors.

Categories DIY