A nibbler, or nibblers, is a tool for cutting sheet metal with minimal distortion. They may be used for nibbling. One type operates much like a punch and die, with a blade that moves in a linear fashion against a fixed die, removing small bits of metal and leaving a kerf approximately 6 mm (0.24 in) wide. Another type operates similar to tin snips, but shears the sheet along two parallel tracks 3–6 mm (0.12–0.24 in) apart, rolling up the waste in a tight spiral as it cuts. Nibblers may be manual (hand operated) or powered.
Power nibblers are often powered by compressed air, though electrical types also exist. A common DIY nibbler tool is an electric drill attachment, which converts the rotary motion of the drill into a reciprocating motion of the jaw.
Detail of cutting bit of manual nibbler, punch-and-die type
Shear-type nibbler and detail of cutting head
- Jeffery Zurschmeide Automotive Welding: A Practical Guide 2009 ISBN 1-932494-86-3- Page 26 "Nibblers make a ragged cut and also leave thousands of little sheetmetal nibbles all over your shop. ... Power shears are the best tool going for cutting sheetmetal, but they cost more than a nibbler, and a lot more than a set of hand shears."