Best Metal Files for Carpenters and Mechanics

A metal file is usually called a rasp or a mill file. A metal file is a tool to remove small amounts of material from a piece of metal, wood, or plastic. Their sharp edges and teeth reduce work times and create precise, consistent results. Metal files can be used to shape, deburr, refine, and smooth the surface and inner areas of metals to prepare them for use.

Some of The Best Metal Files Set Reviewed

Image Product Details   Price
Off-White-Clean-and-Simple-Furniture-Product-Review-Facebook-Post WORKPRO W002111 Flat and Needle File Set 4 (8-inch) files and 2 (4-inch) needle files Check Price
Dark-Editing-Video-Tutorial-Youtube-Thumbnail Crescent Nicholson File Set with Ergonomic Handles 9 pieces, which cover a wide range Check Price
bright-Modern-Job-Offer-Chef-Service-Restaurant-Instagram-Story-512-×-903-px-1500-×-1017-px-572-×-903-px Pferd Diamond Needle File Set Size D 126, length 5-1/2 inches, and coating length 2-3/4 inches Check Price
PFERD-Machinists-File-Set-in-Plastic-Pouch-WRU-5-pcs PFERD Machinists File Set 5 machinist files, 8 inches in length Check Price
Grey-Editing-Video-Tutorial-Youtube-Thumbnail GEARWRENCH 4 Pc. 8″ Bastard File Set – 82820H 4 Pc. 8″ Bastard File Set, 8 In. flat, round, half-round, and triangle file Check Price
bright-Modern-Job-Offer-Chef-Service-Restaurant-Instagram-Story-512-×-903-px-4 Pferd Key File Set with Wooden Handles 6 key files (hand, flat, three square, square, half-round, round), 6 mounted wooden handles Check Price

1. WORKPRO W002111 Flat and Needle File Set

WORKPRO W002111 Flat and Needle File Set

The WORKPRO W002111 Flat and Needle File Set provide high-quality, durable files suitable for any wood, metal, or plastic project. With 4 (8-inch) files and 2 (4-inch) needle files, the set can easily handle all your sharpening and shaping needs.

This set includes an 8-inch flat file which, including its handle, will measure approximately 14 inches long and is made of high carbon hardened steel. It can also be used to deburr metal surfaces in hard-to-reach areas.

This File Set is a superior product crafted with a unique advanced heat treatment process. Bi-material non-slip handles for better control and durable handle construction, so you can be confident it will last. It is coated with double-cut teeth for extra durability and rust protection.

Designed with uniform file tooth marks to ensure precise results in filing projects. Precisely coated teeth offer a double cut and single cut on either side.

This versatile file set is perfect for professionals and do-it-yourselfers who need to maintain sharp edges and smooth surfaces. Enjoy professional results with these professional-grade files.


1. Can be used both in wet and dry environments.

2. You can easily sharpen your tools and deburr surfaces precisely and accurately.

3. Special file set for a metal worker.


1. None that I can think of!

2. Crescent Nicholson File Set with Ergonomic Handles

Crescent Nicholson

An ideal choice for those looking for a functional and ergonomic tool perfect for metalworking, sharpening, and finishing.

It is made from a blend of materials. This set includes a total of 9 pieces, which cover a wide range of usage scenarios. It includes four 10″ bastard cut files, two 6″ tapered files, two 8″ bastard cut files, and one 12″ mill bastard cut file. It is a multi-color set with must-have files covering a wide range of usage scenarios.

This set is perfect for people who need various sizes and shapes of ergonomic files. With a strong and durable material blend, these files are designed to stand up to heavy use and keep their shape and sharpness for a long time.

Its ergonomic handles ensure comfortable handling, while its superior blade holds an edge and removes metal quickly and efficiently. Ideal for sharpening and finishing metalwork.


1. It is known for its durability, reliability, and affordability.

2. Perfect for metalworking, sharpening, and finishing.

3. Perfect for a variety of hard steels.


1. Its price is slightly higher.

3. Pferd Diamond Needle File Set

Pferd Diamond Needle File Set

This PFERD diamond needle file set works on small surfaces, breakthroughs, geometries, profiles, and radii. It includes five files–hand, three square, square, half-round, and round–all with a grit size D 126, length 5-1/2 inches, and coating length 2-3/4 inches. After use, the files can be conveniently stored in the included high-quality plastic box, making it perfect for storing in a toolbox or workbench.

This file set comes with a unique monolayer coating applied to the entire file length, allowing for a 2-3/4″ coating length. This coating type allows for shorter work time and reduced unproductive idle times as there is no need to dress and profile the file. Additionally, the monolayer coating reduces tool costs compared to other file sets, as they can be recoated without the need to replace the tool itself.

Each needle file from this set also provides a unique profile giving you a wide variety of shapes. The monolayer coating also ensures constant product geometry, making it one of the most reliable and productive file sets available.

When using this needle file set, applying only slight pressure to the file, especially in workpiece edge areas, is important to avoid damaging the material. After use, the file can be cleaned in kerosene or anti-static plastic cleaner with a fine brush. Alternatively, ultrasonic cleaning is also possible. It is also important to take care when using this needle file set and avoid contact with grease.


1. Monolayer coating allows for shorter work time and reduced unproductive idle time.

2. Special profile gives you a wide variety of shapes to choose from.

3. Constant product geometry ensures reliability and productivity.


1. Care must be taken when using to avoid damaging the material.

4. PFERD Machinists File Set

 PFERD Machinists File Set

These 5 machinist files are made of high-quality materials and come in an organized plastic pouch, so they are easy to store, transport, and access when needed 8 inches in length and have varying file types, including bastard, three square bastard, tapered half round, and round bastard. This product is designed to keep workers healthy, efficient, and organized when completing tasks.

They are crafted from high-grade and durable steel with superior craftsmanship. These files offer maximum performance and long-lasting use. Ergonomic design allows you to work comfortably without sacrificing quality.

These files are suitable for various metalworking applications, featuring ergonomic handles that provide a secure grip and protection against sharp edges. Each piece comes in a rugged, weather-resistant PVC pouch. That protects the files and allows for easy transport. The high stock removal rate and long service life of these machinist files ensure maximum results in a cost-efficient package.


1. You can get the job done easily and with the best results.

2. They hold their sharpness well and do a fine job

3. Great quality files with one of the most comfortable handles.


1. They are a rare commodity nowadays.

5. GEARWRENCH 4 Pc. 8″ Bastard File Set – 82820H

GEARWRENCH 4 Pc. 8" Bastard File Set

This GEARWRENCH 4 Pc. 8″ Bastard File Set is made from high-quality alloy steel and features a round head and powder-coated finish to provide superior durability and strength.

This file Set is ideal for heavy-duty applications and provides professional results. The set includes an 8 In. flat, round, half-round, and triangle file, making it suitable for metal shaping, smoothing, and sharpening. Built to last, it is designed with durable construction for long-lasting use.

Its ergonomic, dual-material comfort grip handle provides a secure grip, while the smooth, tool-grade steel offers the outstanding cutting ability.

The laser-etched part number makes it easy to quickly identify the file set. With its superior craftsmanship, this set is sure to provide superior results every time.

The ergonomic design and comfortable handles make it easy to use and control.

Whether you are a professional or DIY enthusiast, these tools will make a great addition to your workshop.


1. Ideal for projects that require precise filing.

2. Outstanding cutting ability.

3. Has comfortable handles for easy use and control


1. All types of metal files are not included in this set.

6. Pferd Key File Set with Wooden Handles

Pferd Key File Set with Wooden Handles

The Pferd Key File Set is perfect for delicate and light filing tasks. This set includes 6 key files (hand, flat, three square, square, half-round, round), 6 mounted wooden handles, and a durable plastic pouch to store your tools safely.

This set is suitable for working on various materials, such as aluminum, brass, copper, zinc, grey cast iron, and steel, up to 370 HV (38HRC).

It is capable of performing a wide range of tasks, including deburring, surface work, edge chamfering and rounding, sharpening, and fine finishing. With this highly convenient design, you will enjoy great advantages when doing delicate workpieces, edge chamfering, rounding, sharpening, and finishing.

Overall, the Pferd Key File Set is a great product, and I highly recommend it to anyone who needs to perform a variety of light filing tasks.


1. Durable construction and high-quality materials.

2. Compatible with various materials.

3. Wide range of filing tasks available.


1. Expensive

2. Limited capacity for heavier filing tasks

Buying Guide For Metal File

Here are a Few Elements to Consider When Choosing a File

File Type

You’ll need to decide which style of metal file is best suited for your particular application. A bastard or rough-cut file is best for quickly removing small amounts of metal, while a smoother file can be used for polishing.


Metal files are available with different numbers of teeth per inch, depending on the application. If you’re looking for a fine finish, choose one with few teeth; if you need a heavy-duty file, opt for one with more teeth.


Choose a file size appropriate for the work area you’re dealing with—a longer file will reach smaller areas, while a shorter file is better for large surfaces.


Make sure you find a file handle that fits comfortably in your hand for safe usage. Look out for features like a rubber grip or thumb indents for extra control.


Metal files are available in different materials, from high-carbon steel and stainless steel to tungsten carbide and titanium. Choose one that is best suited for your work.


Choose a file with a comfortable handle that you can grip firmly so you have more control while filing. If the file has a knurled handle, this will allow you to maintain a better grip for longer periods of time.


Always wear protective gear when using a metal file, such as gloves and safety glasses. This will help protect your hands and eyes from debris and oils that may come off of the file.

Helping Tools Needed for Metal working and Woodworking

File Card and Brush

File Card and Brush

They help to keep the metal files clean and free of debris. File cards help to file away burrs, nicks, and other impurities on metalworking tools so that they are smoother and easier to use. Brushes also remove rust, scratches, and other imperfections on the surface.

Mini Vertical Slide

 Mini Vertical Slide

Mini Vertical slide is an important tool for metalworking. It is used to mill, shape, and drill small parts made of metal, allowing for precision details and the production of complex shapes and patterns. Depending on the slide’s size, it can be used to machine tiny components or larger parts. It can also be used to create intricate patterns in metal and produce a smooth finish to the metal surface. Mini Vertical slide also be used to accurately cut, mill, and drill metal surfaces with angled slots or mortises, as well as general reshaping and repair of damaged parts. It is also used to create threaded holes in tight places that are otherwise impossible to reach with a large drill.

Woodworking Vise

 Woodworking Vise

Having a good woodworking vise is essential for any woodworking project.

It helps to securely hold a piece of wood in place to allow for safe and precise cutting or routing. A good woodworking vise will ensure that your details stay in place securely while you work with them. They are especially helpful for ensuring accuracy while sawing, drilling, planning, and sanding parts. Their strong jaws keep the wood steady and provide a safe place to insert clamps and other tools. In addition, they can hold large and unique parts that may not fit in other work-holding devices. Woodworking vises are versatile and help make many woodworking tasks easier and safer.

Digital Caliper

General Tools Digital Caliper

Digital calipers are highly important tools for both woodworking and metalworking. They are used to measure precise distances and angles and to calculate surface area or volume. Calipers help to ensure accuracy and consistency in both crafts, which can be essential for successful project outcomes.

A Guide to Different Types of Files and Their Uses

Crossing File

crossing file

Crossing files are a tool used for precision cutting, filing, and polishing of materials. They allow for intricate designs to be carved into a wide variety of materials.

Terms of Use

1. To use a crossing file, hold the handle in one hand and guide it with steady pressure against the material you are working with.

2. You can use it on its side to flush out tight corners or with its teeth facing up or down for filing flat surfaces.

3. If the file is too small for two hands, use a clamp to hold it in place while you apply pressure.

4. Move the file back and forth in a controlled motion, following the material’s grain where possible.

5. Be sure to replace the flat file when it becomes clogged with material. Dulled files may still remove material, but doing so will produce subpar results and reduce the tool’s longevity. Properly sharpened crossing files can last for many years with proper care.

Flat File

flat file

Flat metal files appear as rectangular or flat oblong-shaped tools, generally made of aluminum or steel. The surface usually has fine, parallel ridges running along the length of the file, designed to help create smooth, polished edges. Their shape may vary slightly depending on the type of job they are intended to do.

Terms of Use

1. Inspect the file for any missing chips or teeth along its edges.

2. Replace if needed. 

3. Then Secure the file in a vise and ensure it is not wobbly.

4. Place the file against the desired surface at a 45-degree angle and begin filing forward and backward.

5. Maintain consistent pressure and speed; don’t let the file linger in one spot for too long. Finally, when finished, wipe down the file with a cloth and move to a new area or project.

Barrette File

barrette file

A metal barrette file is rectangular and slightly curved along the long sides. It usually has a flat top surface, and the file’s width is more prominent than the height. The file typically has a metallic color, along with ridges or teeth along one side. The other side is generally smooth, with a few notches for increased grip.

Terms of Use

1. Start using a soft-bristled brush to remove excess dirt from your filing item.

2. Place the metal barrette file on a flat surface, such as a table or countertop, with the teeth facing away from you.

3. Hold the object you are filing firmly between both hands, angling it slightly downward into the barrette file’s teeth.

4. Slide the object and file together smoothly and continuously.

5. keep the pressure light but effective as you go. When filing is complete, use a soft cloth to wipe away any filings.

Half-Round Metal File

half round file

Half-round metal files generally look like a flat files with one side cut off along the length of the file at an angle to create a semi-circular shape. The cutting edge of the file will be the semi-circular side. Have two cutting edges, one on the top side and one on the bottom.

Terms of Use

1. Start by securing the half-round metal file in a vise or other secure position.

2. Ensure that the direction of the filing motion is away from the secured part and towards the part being worked on.

3. Choose the correct grit for the job. The coarser the grit, the larger the file, and the faster the job is done.

4. Begin filing, applying gentle pressure and ensuring the file is parallel to the metal surface for a uniform finish.

5. Once the desired shape is achieved, use a fine-grit file to smooth the edges.

6. Brush away the filings and inspect the work.

7. If the desired finish is not achieved, move to the subsequent coarser grit and repeat steps 4-6.

8. When the desired finish is achieved, smooth the metal file with a clean cloth or brush to remove any filings.

9. Finally, apply lubricant or oil to the file to protect it from rusting.

Needle Files

needle files

Start by selecting the correct file for the job. Needle metal files come in various sizes, shapes, and grits, and selecting the right one for the job is essential. You’ll want to use a finer grit for more detailed projects.

Terms of Use

1. Insert the file into the workpiece.

2. Press firmly on one end of the needle file into the workpiece.

3. Move the file across the workpiece. Be sure to move in one direction and use even strokes with consistent pressure.

4. Then, Remove the file from the workpiece. When you finish the file, lift it off the workpiece.

5. Clean the file if necessary. Needle files can get clogged with metal filings, so clean them off with a piece of cloth or a soft brush before storing them.

5 Tips For Using Files

1. Coarse files work fast but leave a rough surface

2. Smooth files are ideal for surface finishing

3. When straight filing cuts are only made on the push stroke life, the fifth the file away between strokes to avoid damaging the teeth.

4. Apply light pressure to the work

5. Use a file card or wire brush to clean the file and brush in the direction of the file teeth.

Frequently Ask Question 

1. Which File is Best for Metal?

The best type of file for metalworking is a double-cut mill file. These files have two sets of parallel teeth rows, making them very effective for working on metal surfaces. They are also resistant to breakage, wear, and heat.

2. What is the Best File for Smoothing Metal?

The best file for smoothing metal is typically a half-round or round file. These types of files have rounded shapes that help create a smooth surface. Additionally, a smooth-cut file can help create a smoother finish. It is important to choose the right file and take care not to press too hard, as this can cause more damage than good.

3. What Metal File Removes the Most Metal?

A rasp file is usually used to remove the most metal with the quickest and most efficient filing action. It is often used when working with wood or metal, and it has a coarse surface of parallel ridges across its entire surface.

4. What is the Toughest Metal File?

The toughest metal file is usually made from a material called tungsten carbide. Tungsten carbide is a hard metal alloy with superior cutting ability and is very resistant to wear and tear. It is often used for machining tough or hardened metals, such as stainless steel.

5. What File is Best for Quality?

The best file type for quality depends on the application and the user’s needs. Popular file formats known for high quality include JPEG, PNG, TIFF, and GIF. Each of these file types has its own benefits and drawbacks depending on the application. For example, JPEG is great for photos and graphics that need to be compressed and take up less space, while PNG files are better for pictures that require higher resolution and transparency.


In conclusion, the best metal files are invaluable for shaping and sharpening metal objects. They offer high precision and durability, enabling users to achieve clean and accurate cuts quickly and easily. With a wide variety of shapes and sizes available, there is sure to be the perfect metal file for any job.

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