How To Cut Wire Shelving: 4 Easy DIY Steps For Everyone

Wire shelving, also known as wire decking or ventilated shelving, is commonly used to store your household items.

Installing wire shelving in your pantry, closet, or garage is a fantastic way to make your storage area more functional.

However, the standard length of the shelves might not be available for your space, while cutting the shelf may appear challenging.

As a result, “how to cut wire shelving” became a question that boggles our minds. However, you don’t have to worry anymore because the following guide will show how to cut it perfectly without injuring yourself.

Things You Need Before Cutting Wire Shelving

Wire shelving is a widespread good on a daily basis because of its low cost, versatility, and convenience of installation. In addition, it will make your house much more neat and tidy.

There are many household furniture you can make from wire shelving, such as cupboards, closets, shoe racks, etc.

Nevertheless, with the standardized size of the original wire shelving, it can be an obstruction that prevents you from placing your shelves in your home custom space.

And that’s the reason why you have to cut them into different pieces or even design a brand new tool to make it suitable for your needs. So then this is a list of items that you will need to do all of those:

  • Tools for cutting: bolt cutters/ a hacksaw/ a Dremel
  • A tape measure
  • A marker (permanent)
  • A mill file/ a drum sander/ a sandpaper
  • Soft clamps
  • Glasses and gloves
  • A towel (if you use a hacksaw)
  • Hearing protection (if you use a Dremel)

Instructions On How To Cut Wire Shelving (4 Simple Steps)

Step 1: Prepare before cutting

Cut Wire Shelving

First of all, you should measure the width of the space that you’re going to install the wire shelving. In fact, it will be helpful for you to choose a suitable size of wire shelving that will be able to fit into the area or ideal to be redesigned nicely.

Besides, these measurements will allow you to measure and mark the wire shelving where it needs to be cut.

Step 2: Measure and mark the alternative length for the wire shelving, yet reduce the length a little

Determine the measurements of your shelves with a tape measure, then subtract 1 in (2.5 cm) from the overall length.

It will be simpler to fit the shelving into the end brackets that assist keep the shelving in place if you subtract this tiny amount from the length.

Next, transfer your modified dimensions to each piece of wire shelving that has to be cut, and use a permanent marker to define the cut lines clearly.

Step 3: Cut carefully

This is an important step that needs prudence and accurate cutting skill. There are three different guides for the three most popular cutting tools:

Cutting using bolt cutters

The best way to cut wire shelving with this tool is to keep it firmly between your feet during the cut, so it doesn't slide. 

Then cut through the cut line with your cutting instrument — in this example, a set of bolt cutters. 

To break through each of the wires, you'll probably have to make numerous tiny cuts.

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Cutting using a hacksaw

Because most wire shelving units have a white powder-coated finish that is easy to scratch or damage, the hacksaw can also cut the workbench surface.

So for this tool, you should have a towel with you so that you could spread it underneath the shelf on the workbench during the cut.

Use at least 2 tight soft clamps to secure the shelf to the bench to avoid marrying the shelving's covering and the cutting process.

Finally, start cutting evenly through the metal with your dominant hand. But remember, the first cutline should extend 2–3 inches (5.1–7.6 cm) beyond the bench's edge.

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Cutting using a Dremel

Choose a metal-cutting wheel attachment and connect it to the end of your rotary tool.

Turn on the rotary tool and slice straight down through the wire after aligning the cutting wheel over your initial cut line.

Restart the operation by turning off the tool and repositioning it over the following cut line.

Best Way To Cut Wire Shelving
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Step 4: Smooth the edges

Bolt cutters and most other cutting procedures will leave the shelf with sharp, potentially hazardous edges.

To smooth away any burrs or metal shards generated by your cuts, use a metal mill file, drum sander, or sandpaper (available at any hardware shop).

After that, you can use the plastic caps that came with your wire shelving to cover up severed wire ends (they look like little soda bottle tops).

While this may not be a problem if the shelf ends are flush with the wall, there's practically no reason not to smooth down the edges (especially when you have small kids/ pets).

Cutting Wire Shelving

FAQs

Can you add wheels to wire shelving?

The answer is yes, and there are two options for you. The simplest solution is to obtain a threaded wheel, then unscrew the levelers and change the wheels.

For light-duty applications, this should suffice. However, adding stem-type casters to your wire shelving, on the other hand, is a little more challenging.

Does Home Depot cut wire shelving? 

It’s a yes, as a matter of fact. Home Depot, Inc. or Home Depot is known as an American home appliance retailer that sells construction tools, products, and services.

Besides selling tools, Home Depot will cut various items, but not all of them, and unfortunately, never to exact measurements.

For example, a store employee can cut rope, chain, electrical wire, timber, sheet lumber, pipes, sheet flooring (vinyl and carpet), wire shelving, and blinds.

Is cutting wire shelving similar to cutting laminate shelving? 

As the laminate shelving has a solid surface, the cutting work will be more straightforward than it is for wire shelving.

However, aside from the tools, the whole process to cut these two types of shelves stays the same.

By the way, the best tool you can use to cut laminate shelving is a circular saw. Please turn on the saw and wait for it to warm up before cutting along the scoreline with a shallow cut.

The teeth of your circular saw's blade penetrate the bottom of the board first, rotating clockwise.

And of course, don’t forget to flush the edges using a drum sander or sandpaper for the safest experience.

Conclusion

It is not hard work to cut wire shelving by yourself. What you need to do is to follow all the steps we gave you above.

I hope this can help with your home decoration projects. But don’t ever forget to pay attention and stay safe. Have a nice day!