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Are there any alternatives to seaming pliers?

Are there any alternatives to seaming pliers?

As an alternative to using seaming pliers, you could try one of the following tools:

Lead dresser

A lead dresser used as an alternative to seaming pliers to form a seam You could use a lead dresser to form seams on sheet metal.
A lead dresser in use A lead dresser is a traditional lead worker’s tool that is made from either wood or plastic and is used to continually beat or tap against metal until the metal flattens and smooths.

Claw hammer

Using a claw hammer and block of wood as an alternative to seaming pliers You could use a claw hammer and block of wood to bend an edge onto a piece of sheet metal.

To make this edge, you simply overhang a small section of the metal over the block of wood and then hit the overhang with the hammer until it flattens against the wood, forming an edge.

A claw hammer removing a nail A claw hammer can also be used to remove nails.

Two pieces of wood

Using blocks of wood as an alternative to seaming pliers You could use two pieces of wood to bend a piece of metal to form an edge. This method is the most simple, using two pieces of wood on either side of the metal to beat an edge along it.

By hand

Folding an edge on a piece of sheet metal by hand as an alternaive to using seaming pliers You could fold the sheet metal by hand. You can bend the metal with one or both hands, as it is a flexible material, using a length of wood to bend the metal against.

Edging roller

Edging roller at work seaming a piece of metal A hand-operated edging roller, can be used to form an edge along sheets of metal. It works by the user positioning the roller at the edge of the sheet metal and pushing it along with a small section of metal between the parallel “wheels,” which is automatically folded over.

Folding tool

A folding tool in action on a piece of metal on a roof There is a folding tool that bends a small, set amount of metal at a time by being placed along the edge of the metal with the metal inserted between the two “lips” of the tool. Pressure is then exerted on the fixed handle to bend the metal that is being held.

Seaming tongs

Seaming tongs Seaming tongs are very similar to seaming pliers in appearance and use. They are also known as roofing tongs or deck tongs. Some people call seaming tongs ‘seaming pliers’ and vice versa, especially in the USA.
Large seaming tongs in use The main difference between seaming tongs and seaming pliers is that the tongs have longer handles for greater leverage because they are used more for heavy-duty, industrial work. Also, seaming tongs have a deeper throat for bending thick and heavy sheet metal. Seaming tongs are used to bend larger and thicker sheet metal – they are not suitable for more delicate or decorative work.


Question mark It could be economical for you to use a lead dresser or claw hammer to form seams and edges, as these tools have more than one use.

Using blocks of wood or just your hands is cheap and easy. Using the edging roller is best for longer pieces of sheet metal, and is labour-saving if you regularly bend sheet metal.

Using the folding tool is easy and accurate. However, only very thin metal that is no longer than the tool can be bent.

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