5 Best Sheet Metal Nibbler (March 2020) – Top Pick & Reviews

Do you want a precise cut of your metal stuff? That’s exactly what a good sheet metal nibbler does. 

A metal nibbler can make the operator an artist where the metal sheet is the canvas. 

The Metal nibblers are every professional’s need. Whoever works with the metal sheet is bound to use nibblers for better performance and ease of work.

You can meet up the shape as you want just in a flip by scrabbling the nibbler on the canvas.

But because of the enormous demand, many companies started manufacturing Nibblers, and of course, all of them are not worthy and convenient enough to go on. 

As a result, the newbie mostly made the mess to pick the right one.

To sort the problem out, we have come up with some of the best sheet metal nibblers with the key features they hold.

Additionally, you will get an easy and impactful buying guide at the deep. 

But only the paint and paintbrush isn’t enough to create a masterpiece craft. Also you should know, how to paint?

So, what if you don’t know how to operate a Nibbler?

No worries; we have accumulated a quick lesson on How to use a nibbler as well.


5 Best Sheet Metal Nibblers

We have considered the expert’s opinion to make this resource. So, all the nibblers below are incredibly efficient in their work.

So, all you need to recognize which one meets your requirements the most.

Check it out...


1. Makita JN1601 16 Gauge Sheet Metal Nibbler- TOP PICK

Makita JN1601 16 Gauge Sheet Metal Nibbler

The Makita JN1601 16 Gauge nibbler is considered as the best metal craftsmanship with user-friendly and compatible features.

Take a bird’s eye look on its key features-

Grips:

Want a nibbler that grips well and also gives you precise work? Then Makita JN1601 16 Gauge Nibbler is the best one to go for.

With its ergonomic slim body design, it gives a secure grip that let’s have better control over your work.

Better Control...

With a lock-on sliding switch and ergonomic build, you get the best kind of control featured on this nibbler.

Its lightweight design doesn’t put much pressure on your hand, so it ensures your comfort.

Also, the lightweight makes it a lot more comfortable than some of the other products in the market.

High Capacity!

The Makita JN1601 16 Gauge Nibbler can cut through 18-gauge stainless steel and 16-gauge mild steel without any trouble. 

Now you don’t need to worry about those steelworks you have been putting off.

Convenient to use...

The most distinct feature of this nibbler is the Die that rotates 360 degrees with a large ¼ stroke, providing you precision in your metalwork.

Exceptional Power:

With a powerful 5 AMP motor, the Makita JN1601 16 Gauge Nibbler gives you 2,200 strokes per minute. This is real fast! Right?

What can be better?

Nothing is perfect. The Makita JN1601 16 Gauge nibbler also has a drawback. 

The manufactures should pay heed to the durability and performance of the switches. The switches are not good enough as kind of features Makita holds. I hope they will work on that.

But the good news is that there have not such mentionable demerits.


  • Slim ergonomic design.
  • Better gripping.
  • Great serviceability.
  • Good control.
  • Exceptional capacity.


  • Switches aren’t durable.
  • Sometime gets stuck in the ridges.

All we can say is that this is one of the best nibblers you can find right now. It really does what it promises. You can give it a go for sure. This is our top pick for you among all the other metal nibblers.


2. Grizzly T23085 Pneumatic Nibbler- BUDGET PICK

Grizzly T23085 Pneumatic Nibbler

Need a nibbler to cut entirely? Then have a look at Grizzly T23085 Pneumatic Nibbler. It is a complete package of some fantastic features to make a precise cut. 

Considering lightweight features, built quality, and the way of functioning, it is by far the best nibbler for the professionals.

Quality builds:

It features an Aluminum housing body, which is quite light-weighted. The net weight is 2 lbs. 

Moreover, the adjustable die turns to suit several cutting positions. This machine offers maximum Gauge (mild steel) - 16 ga; strokes per minute- 3800 SPM; average air compunction- 9.8 CFM, and the air inlet is 1/4" NPT.

Better function...

You can’t expect more performing functional support that the Grizzly T23085 Pneumatic delivered. 

Workpiece inserts into the blade sleeve slot against the nibbler blade.

The nibbler can be attached with an air supply set at 90 PSL with distinct blade components.


  • Cuts up to 16-gauge steel without leaving burrs or deformed edges.
  • Good grip.
  • Cuts straight, curved, large or small very perfectly.
  • Saws soft tins as well.


  • It contains some chemicals which may cause cancer, congenital disabilities, etc.

The Grizzly T23085 Pneumatic is lightweight with excellent and compatible outlook. It gives a good grip at work as well as affordable to own. 

So if you have a tight budget but still want excellent performance, then you should go for this one as it’s our budget pick for this session.


3. Fein BLK 1.3CSE/N12 18 Gauge Nibbler- PREMIUM PICK FOR PRO

Fein BLK 1.3CSE/N12 18 Gauge Sheet Metal Nibbler

Fein BLK 1 3CSE/N12 18 Gauge, nibbler, is the fastest cutting nibbler with the cutting speed of 7-1/2-feet per minute. Let’s have a look at the features that makes it more reliable than others-

Reliable Capacity!

It has adjustable cutting angles up to 360 degrees with a 16-1/2-foot electric power cable. 

This product is lightweight and easy to control and grip with a punch and die system and cutting direction changes to help save time.

Accurate Control:

The Fein BLK 1.3CSE 18 Gauge Nibbler cuts accurately. The tool allows you to adjust the cutting direction up to 360° using the tool-free pivoting cutting head.

Rotating Punch...

The Fein product offers a special rotating punch to ensure a longer life. Compared to other competitors, it can increase almost 30% lifetime, which makes it the absolute choice for the professionals. 

Faster Cutting speed:

It is the fastest and easiest-to-use nibbler on the market, which cuts through corrugated, trapezoidal in single roll sheet metal. 

Smooth cuts!

This tool is able to cut metals just like butter. And that is why professionals like it the most. 


  • Suitable for metal constructions and other metal building applications.
  • Easy operation to handle around curves.
  • 360 degree angle cut.


  • Price is a little high.

This is the fastest nibbler you can consider right now. It saves a lot of time and works perfectly. The Fein BLK 1 3CSE/N12 is our premium pick among all the other products we listed here.


4. Hitachi CN16SA 16-Gauge Sheet Metal Nibbler

Hitachi CN16SA 16-Gauge Sheet Metal Nibbler

Hitachi CN16SA 16-Gauge 3.5-Amp Sheet Metal Nibbler has the supreme powers to cut the flat sheet metal.

Its grip is small, which gives you easy to hold and comfort while cutting the sheet metal. 

Variation in cutting...

The die has 3 different positioned settings for directional cutting. so that you can cut your workpiece in 3 direction.

Also, the depth of this tool allows you to great angled cut.

Monstrous Capacity!

The 3.5 Amp motor generates no-load speed up to 2300 SPM, which is why you can cut 5.7-feet per minute, impressive right?

But wait there's more

With this nibbler, you can cut up to 16-Gauge mild steel and 18-Gauge stainless.

Smooth Control:

The best part of this nibbler is, quick off slide switch. With this switch, you don't need to worry about safety. 

If you think something went wrong just touch the switch and slide, you're done. Now you and your metal are safe.

Faster cutting speed...

The capacity for cutting the work-piece is noticeable. It can cut more quickly only if you have a practice of using it before.


  • Quick and easy direction changes.
  • Small grip circumference.
  • maximum control.


  • Need some practice for fast cutting.

No wonder why Hitachi is always best. The features of the nibbler are so impressive, and it's easy to use as well.

Taking everything into account, it is by far the best nibbler for both newbie and professionals. 


5. Makita XNJ01Z 18V Cordless 16 Gauge Nibbler

Makita XNJ01Z 18V Cordless 16 Gauge Nibbler

If you are looking for a nibbler that cuts fast and smooth, then XNJ01Z is powered by a Makita (1,900 SPM) is the best.

Let's have a look at its features-

Unparalleled Capabilities:

The XNJ01Z is invented for cutting metal roof decking, stainless steel, and sheet metal. 

As promises you can do your work amazingly without the cord.

Well built!

Its weight is 4 pounds, with 3.5 x 11.3 x 7.8 Dimensions. The Nibbler model number is XNJ01Z.

It requires Lithium-ion batteries with voltage 18. Style bare is a tool material. 

Rotating die holder...

It has the option to rotate its die holder to 360 degrees with a cutting radius of 1-3/4” (inner edge) and 2” (outer edge).

Which will help you to meet the demand of cutting directions.

Comfortable grip:

The grip of this machine is made up of rubber, so you will get a smooth experience while operating this machine.

The Bad...

The only drawback of this Nibbler is it doesn’t require the battery charger, which can be troublesome. So you need to pay some extra penny to get the charger. 

If you can deal with this issue, the XNJ01Z can be a smart choice for you.


  • Powerful.
  • Versatile and Cordless.
  • Cuts faster and Smooth.


  • Battery charger required.

It's a powerful nibbler that can do the cutting without and cord. It is easy to use with a good speed of work. So, undoubtedly, it's the best nibbler.


Before You Buy a Sheet Metal Nibbler You Need to Know These Things...

So, what you should be focusing on while buying a nibbler?

The question might be popping up on your mind. Well, the answer lies ahead.

Below you will get to know the potentials a good nibbler should have.

Capacity

When you are going to buy a nibbler, you will need to check out how energetic it is.

Its ability holds its quality the most. The efficiency mostly depends on the type of metal you use for your work. 

Aluminum can be easily cut down with the best nibbler at a 12-gauge cutting capacity. So consider a nibbler that is capable of making a deep cut. 

It’s always suggested to use a nibbler having the cutting capacity of 8 to 18 gauges.

You will get an idea of the capacity in the packaging the nibbler comes with. Choose the one that meets your needs.

Strokes

Stroke is the trait that every decent nibbler must-have. A nibbler will be considered as best performing nibbler if they could adjust when it comes to working with different materials.

Their strokes per minute vary with the material used. Like a thinner gauge material asks for a higher stroke per minute, whereas the thicker ones require lesser strokes per minute. 

After figuring out your work-piece, you will surely get an idea of the ideal stroke per minute required for a smooth finish. 

The ideal amount ranges from 1300 to 4000 strokes per minute based on the different gauges of materials you work with.

Cutting

The cutting radius of a nibbler is a considerable factor in choosing your nibbler.

The best nibblers are found to have a radius of 1 inch for the ordinary models and a radius of 4 inches for the bigger-sized models. 

So, again, it all comes down to your work. What your work requires is the main question here as well. 

The minimum cutting radius of a nibbler is calculated from the difference of kerf thickness of dissection where radius comes from inside and outside.

With the help of this buying guide, you can surely decide what type of nibbler you will need to choose for the best possible performance of your work.

How to Use a Sheet Metal Nibbler?

Whether you are a beginner or an old hand, you need to know how to operate it efficiently.

If you don’t know the exact way of using a nibbler, you will ruin your work-piece.

So let’s take a quick look at the usage process of a nibbler- 

Step 1

First of all, get a strong nibbler to cut the metal sheet. You can choose one from the list above according to your requirements. 

They have own the expert's trust with actual performance and dedication. 

Remember, you won’t expect a perfect finish with a so-called good nibbler. 

Step 2

If you want to cut the metal sheet in the exact shape, then you must cut it straight. Hold the sheet down and use the straight edge for a guide.

If you want the angled cut to calculate the angle and place the nibbler as it requires. 

Step 3

If you want to keep the body of your sheers for your nibblers parallel with your work just like a circular saw or any other saw and then bind your blade. 

Clamp the sheet and cut it. You will get the perfect shape you want.

Nibbler or Shear?

Nibblers and shears both are metal cutting tools. And both of them are good at what they are supposed to do. 

But when it comes to choosing one of them, it gets tricky.

Nibblers are compact, which gives them the edge of smooth movement with better control and precision. Also, nibblers can cut metal very fast. 

They can cover those intricate curves that you want to pull off from your metal sheets. The good thing about a nibbler is that it doesn’t distort the metal and also cut with a tight radius that most other cutting tools can’t begin to comprehend.

There are some downsides to cutting metal with a nibbler. The first one is cutting with a nibbler causes a lot of mess. When you cut metal with a nibbler, the waste goes all over the place causing a mess. 

Secondly,

The removed area while cutting metal is quite larger. So, you have to plan out the whole process of cutting the metal. And it’s better to use another tool for a final trim cut.

On the other hand, metal shears are tools that come with a fixed and movable sharp-edged set of jaws. 

You keep the metal on the flat surface of the shear, and then the other blade comes on top of it to cut the metal sheet.

Shears do minimal kerf to them, which means less of the metal gets wasted, and you get more precise metal sheets for your workplace.

The disadvantage of metal shears is that you don’t have the freedom to control the cutting process as you get with the nibblers. 

Nevertheless, they give you little to no kerf at all while cutting metals. So, in our opinion, it’s better to use both these tools together to get the best possible outcome. 

And if you have any preference, then go according to that.


Go to Work...

To conclude...

There you go; we have given you all the information you needed regarding the best sheet metal nibblers.

Also, we came up with the best 5 metal nibblers that might suit your needs. All of them had distinctive reasons that make them such popular.

Now pick the one that suits your needs as all of them are quite good in their ways.

Leave a Comment