Every homeowner and worker should have tools to assist them when working with metal and other similar materials. Metal files serve for this purpose.
They can be utilized for various tasks, starting from sharpening blades to cleaning surfaces for cutting steel and welding. However, due to the many types and models out there, homeowners can struggle to pick the best metal files for them.
To give you an idea of how to do this and what to look for when making your choice, in this guide, we’ll present the top seven models together with a buying guide containing notable features. So, let’s go!
Reviews of the Best Quality Metal Files
Finder Semi-Round Hand Rasp File
This file incorporates teeth that are able to cut through many things. Therefore, they are suitable for metal surfaces that need cleaning or polishing as well as glass, plastic, and other materials.
Due to the fact that it’s made of high-carbon steel, it’s known to be durable. Still, they maintain the comfortability and tough grip with the ergonomic rubber handle. However, users report certain downsides related to the low performance on wood and the unfinished top.
For those that want to learn more about this product, here are some specifications:
- Weight: 3.2 ounces
- Dimensions: 4.5 x 4.5 x 4.5 inches
- Size of the hand file: 200 millimeters
- Color: Grey, black, and orange
JinFeng Needle File Set
Users should know that this set incorporates several types of files among which are round, square, triangular, flat, and similar. They are made to last long thanks to the carbon steel. To accompany this, there are the rubber handles for ensuring a tight grip and comfortability while holding the file.
However, as they are small when compared to some of the others, they usually require more time and work. Also, users state that when more pressure is applied, they tend to break. And to purchase them again, you should get the whole set.
Some more detailed features are:
- Length of file: 4 inches
- Total length: 6 inches
- Diameter of shank: 3 millimeters
Weight: 2.4 ounces
SE 10-Piece Diamond Needle File Set with 150 Grit - 744DF-R
What people should consider before getting this model is that the files comprising the set are small and not very sharp. Therefore, users should spend longer time to finish the tasks.
Despite this, they are known to be comfortable with dipped handles. Not to mention that there are ten various files that come in this collection, offering users more choices. Also, most of the files are suitable for surfaces that are square or flat.
Here are other details:
- Length: 5.5 inches
- Grit of diamond: 150
- Length of diamond: 2-3/4 inches
- Weight: 2.88 ounces
Nicholson 06706N Axe Metal File
As the name suggests, this file is made of metal, making it strong for sharpening other tools made of this material. To contribute to this, it has a rectangular shape with single and double cuts on the respective sides.
Moreover, the manufacturer made storing easier thanks to the holes in the handles. They can be used to hang the files on the wall. Yet it should be noted that this product hasn’t be proclaimed as a comfortable one. This is due to the sharp edges and the lack of coating.
For more details, check these out:
- Weight: 6.4 ounces
- Length: 8 inches
- Shape: Rectangle
- 2 safe edges
TEKTON 12 Inch Mill File
The red handle gives a special touch to this model. It’s long and comfortable enough to hold the file firmly. Aside from this, the product can be utilized for various purposes. They vary between sharpening, deburring, shaping, and smoothing out of the edges.
Despite this, users report certain downsides that have to do with the edges getting dull fast, which apparently slows down the whole process. Also, pressure shouldn’t be applied in large quantities as it may break. Some more detailed specifications are as follows:
- Shape: Rectangle
- Weight: 7.2 ounces
- Dimensions of the product: 14.3 x 1.8 x 1.3 inches
- Size: 12 inches
- Color of the handle: Red
MulWark 9pcs Premium Grade Tempered High Carbon Steel Carpenter File Set
When it comes to picking the best metal files, it should be noted that they should be able to perform more than one task. Therefore, models like this set satisfy this requirement. The tools range in type and size, enabling the users to do more projects and applications, beginning with wood, clocks, and watches to plastics and metal.
The carbon steel, which has the toughness of 62HRC contributes to the quality of the files and their durability. Aside from this, the teeth are double-cut and offer precision while working both professionally and as a hobby.
However, heavy-duty tasks can’t really be performed with these files as they aren’t made to sustain them. Here are other specifications you should be aware of:
- Number of pieces: 9
- Color: Orange and grey
- Weight: 2.14 pounds
- Dimensions of the product: 13.3 x 8.4 x 1.5 inches
Tarvol Needle File Set
This is an affordable set of six files in the form of needles that are helpful in specific tasks like shaping different materials. They are made of hard alloy steel for increased resistance. Yet when compared to other models that fall under the best metal working files category it’s slightly less durable. Not to mention that it can be flimsy.
Still, leaving this aside, the rubber handle is soft and comfortable to carry. What’s more, it doesn’t get damaged in wet conditions. Even if something happens or users aren’t satisfied, the set comes with a complete manufacturer’s money-back guarantee.
For those that want to learn more about this product, these are detailed specifications:
- Weight: 3.2 ounces
- Material: Carbon steel
- Dimensions of the files: 7.9 x 4.4 x 0.8 inches
- Shapes variety: 6
- Handle material: PVC
Buying Guide Regarding the Best Metal Files
Every job has its corresponding metal file. To determine whether the one you’ve had on your mind can do it all or it’s specifically designed for a particular job, you’ll need to take a look at some factors and characteristics of the best metal file set. Some of them can be found in the following paragraphs.
To begin with, the back of a metal file has a round side. Next to it, it’s the edge. Its shape can be either square or round. Often one can find teeth placed in them for the process of filing. There’s also the safe edge which is the one edge that doesn’t have teeth, thus gaining the name. The whole surface of the metal file is referred to as the file’s side. Then, the teeth follow. This part is characterized by some cutting edges. After that, on the other end of the metal file, you can find the tang, which should be placed in a handle. Having said that, the tang is connected to the file thanks to the part known as the heel or sometimes a shoulder.
All of the types of metal files can be boiled down to the main four. They are:
- Rasp-cut files – The primary utilization of these files is on wood surfaces. One of the reasons for that is that users can find plenty of teeth on it, which are very effective for this particular task.
- Double-cut files–When users operate with these files they should put in quite a pressure to achieve what they’ve planned. The files’ teeth work in both directions.
- Single-cut files – These files are some of the most common ones as you’ll see them used for the sharpening of knives and such. Contrary to the above-mentioned type, this file’s teeth just cut in a single direction.
- Curved-cut files – For those who are working with fiberglass and parts for automobiles, they will find this type pretty useful. Just like the name suggests, the curves of the files are curved.
The File’s Cut
Good quality metal files aren’t all the same even when we’re talking about the cut they have. Naturally, each cut serves a different purpose and presents the user with a different end product. For one, the smooth cut of the files is for more subtle finishes. This cut will best prepare the material for sanding.
On the opposite side of the spectrum is the bastard cut. It’s very harsh and swift when going through a certain material.
Somewhere in between, one can find the so-called medium cut. On one hand, it gets the fatness of the bastard one, but still, there is a slightly smooth surface on the material, which is more like the smooth cut.
When individuals extensively use the metal files, some parts of the material they’re working on are bound to get stuck on the surface of the file.
That may often result in clogging or damaging the file’s teeth, which can in turn damage the material, too.
For that reason, users should have a file card for frequent maintenance with which they’ll go over the metal file and clean it. Only that way will the file achieve maximum performance.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Multiple shapes exist on the market when it comes to metal files. To help you out, we’ll outline some of the most popular ones. The round files have teeth all around and are pretty handy when enlarging round-shaped openings. The three-square or taper file has two sides for cutting and one for the smooth cut. That’s why a lot of people use it for teeth sharpening of a variety of tools. Moreover, there is the half-round file. It is part flat and part curved. The square shape has, of course, four sides. They’re all of the cutting ones. Eventually, one can stumble upon the hand, as well as the flat and mill file. What’s specific about the three of them is that their teeth are aligned in a parallel position on the surface.
When a great amount of material gathers on the surface where a person works, they need a metal file to remove it. That’s why these tools are utilized in jobs that include wood and metal. Aside from this, they have various other purposes that involve shaping, molding, and sharpening.
Most of the files are made of steel. Carbon steel is especially widespread due to its durability and resistance. Connected to this, there are some models that are completely hardened or case hardened.
After all of this, it’s clear that purchasing the best metal files can turn out to be more complicated. Mainly, this is because there are many different sets that contain tools in various sizes. Moreover, this is the reason why the files are suitable for more tasks. So, the choice comes to the buyer. They should sort out their priorities, analyze their needs, and requirements and look for a product that satisfies that. Good luck and share how the shopping went in the comments section!