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Discussion Starter #1
Getting ready to remove the cut outs to install switches for some lights. I am using factory type switches and it looks like it needs to be a really tight fit. Any tips on removing the cut outs ???????

Maybe I'm over thinking this but a little guidance from someone who has been there always helps !!!
 

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Utility knife, Dremel, roto zip.
 

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Utility knife with a heated blade - cuts easily and easy to control.
 
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Chain saw, but a real little one. :)

I had to cut round holes for some light switches and I just used a drill bit. If I was cutting square or rectangle holes I would probably use a dremel with a cut off wheel.
 

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I just did mine within the last two weeks and what I did was use a box cutter with a pair of gloves (to protect skin in case of slipping) go slow and make a number of passes on the scored lines, once you have done this then you will have to start increasing the pressure on the blade. Once I got it out I went to Home Depot and bought a set of files which had a number of different sizes and shapes one of which was a hasp with 2 difference sizes. Work really slow, it is much better to have a tight fit than to over cut the hole. Good luck and go slow
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks all !!

I'm thinking either the Dremel tool or the heated blade. I need something that will not jump around in my hand.

If I use the Dremel, cut off wheel or some kind of cutting tip ????

If i use the heated knife, Box cutter heated with a lighter ???? (I'm leaning this way because it sounds easier on the hands)
 

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I recently filled my dash with all of the switches that you can...

http://www.prcforum.com/forum/17-ranger-discussions/58291-finished-up-my-wiring-project-today.html#post493237

I took a box knife, and slowly traced the edges of the marks from the inside of the dash over & over until I made it through to the front. The most tedious part is that the corners are slightly rounded, so that takes a little more time.

Personally, I would be a little afraid to use any power tool or hot knife, as it was so easy to do with a box blade & kept me from getting a little too carried away. It is always easier to trim off a little more than to try to add some back ;-)
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I recently filled my dash with all of the switches that you can...

http://www.prcforum.com/forum/17-ranger-discussions/58291-finished-up-my-wiring-project-today.html#post493237

I took a box knife, and slowly traced the edges of the marks from the inside of the dash over & over until I made it through to the front. The most tedious part is that the corners are slightly rounded, so that takes a little more time.

Personally, I would be a little afraid to use any power tool or hot knife, as it was so easy to do with a box blade & kept me from getting a little too carried away. It is always easier to trim off a little more than to try to add some back ;-)
Nice work !!!! If mine look any where near that I'll be happy !!!
 

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Box cutter or drywall knife with a new blade. Slow and steady. Use a rat tail file to round out the corners if needed. Someone stated tight is best, so take it slow. Power tools are the last thing I'd try.
 

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If i use the heated knife, Box cutter heated with a lighter ???? (I'm leaning this way because it sounds easier on the hands)
I've used a box cutter, both cold and hot. The hot blade is easier on the hands. I used a MAPP torch but a household propane torch or a small butane would work just as well. A lighter would probably work also but it would slow you down some. As John, said, slow and easy! I heated the blade cut an inch or so, wiped and reheated the blade and cut another inch - takes less than ~5 minutes per hole and the corners come out square and the edges are smooth.
hotknife2.jpg
 

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Drill and bit in the corners to get the radius. In between drill holes, heated box blade.
I have a Dremel, but it cuts to quickly thru the soft plastic. Without a jig, I didn't trust myself.
 

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I use an oscillating tool on the Rangers I've installed switches on in the past, including my own. It works great.
 

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I got the template for the proper size from the internet and printed it on paper. I then marked the hole w/ a sharpie and used and ocillating tool to make the cut. Next time I think I may go with the hot razor knife method. The ocillating tool cut thru that plastic like nothing but is hard to control. I was lucky in my case since the new switch covered enough to cover my little slip up. The switch fit nice and tight after a little file work to refine the hole though.
 

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Utility knife with a new blade and leather gloves...Knife is way more forgiving than a Dremel in my opinion
 

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The beauty of an oscillating tool is its easy to control and doesnt jump around on you compared to say, a dremel. The right blade makes all the difference, EASY to cut out with a smaller skinny blade. If its jumping around on you your doing something wrong.
 

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The beauty of an oscillating tool is its easy to control and doesnt jump around on you compared to say, a dremel. The right blade makes all the difference, EASY to cut out with a smaller skinny blade. If its jumping around on you your doing something wrong.
I would consider the oscillating tool easy to control for less precise jobs. I use mine all the time for all sorts of projects around the house. Maybe it was just me, but when that sucker gets going it can jump around a little when making the first plunge cut into the hard plastic. They cut so fast that its easy to go past the lines (at least when cutting such a small hole). I think the hot utility blade and a little file work would be more precise and there would less chance of making the hole too large. Of course, this is just my experience. Just to vent a little…..it really chaps me that Polaris doesn't put knock out holes in the dashes of all their machines. They have to know that people add all sorts of switches after purchase. I know that not all people may want to use the large rocker switches, but most do to maintain the factory look. How hard would it be to put the holes in from the factory and put some plastic caps over them? I know some models do, but at least the midsize machines have zero holes.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Thanks to all who posted !!

I used the hot blade and file method to make the hole. Made a few passes with the blade Cold to start the cut then heated the blade and finished. Filed a little and the switch slid in. I was planning on making two hole but what I thought was just a raised section in the middle was a knock out for a precut hole.

Thanks again to all who posted, sure makes things easier with a little help !!!!!
 
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