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Making Cutting Tasks Easier With the Right Tools

Written by:
Maria Harutyunian
Eric Reinholdt

Have you ever tried to tackle a cutting project, but your tool wasn’t up to the task? We’ve all been in that position. The last thing you need is more difficulties, especially when these can lead to unnecessary injuries. Instead of reaching for that dull utility knife or rusty box cutter, consider hunting for a trusted tool.

Firstly, you want a safe cutter. Hurting yourself with a dangerous tool won’t get the job done. Secondly, you want an effective blade that can cut through almost anything. You can find a safe ceramic box cutter and a utility knife to do all of your cutting tasks efficiently; you just have to know what to look for. 

Here’s how you can make cutting tasks easier with the right tools.

The Right Tools Have the Right Features 

While on the hunt for the right tool, whether it’s a box cutter or utility knife, it’s essential for that tool to have optimal features. That way, you can tackle any cutting task easily, with total safety and zero trips to the hospital.

The Blade 

When considering the type of blade you need, it’s best to keep two things in mind: safety and effectiveness. Several common materials are used for blades, including steel, stainless steel, alloy steel, and carbon steel. You might also find these less common materials on your search: titanium and cobalt alloys, plastic, obsidian, and ceramics. 

Which blade material is the best bang for your buck? Look no further than ceramics. Zirconium oxide is a tough ceramic with a hardness and longevity that surpasses steel. Because of its long-lasting qualities, you won’t have to worry about dulling and rusting blades or frequent blade changes. You’ll save money. 

Moreover, this ceramic is safe to the touch, significantly decreasing your risk of cuts and lacerations. It slices various cutting materials, making it a must-have for any cutter in your toolbox.  

The Handle 

The handle is another important feature of your tool, primarily if you work in an industrial setting or any job that requires frequent cutting. Having the wrong handle can mean the difference between helpful and hurtful. For example, suppose a handle is uncomfortable to hold and sits awkwardly in your hand, and you use it for an extended period. In that case, you might increase your risk of developing a Repetitive Strain Injury (RSI).

RSIs impact muscles, tendons, nerves, and ligaments in the forearm, wrist, hand, and shoulder. While treatable, it’s certainly not fun to have and throws a wrench in your workflow. 

Handles are composed of many materials, including stainless steel, plastic, wood, glass-filled nylon, and carbon fibers. Glass-filled nylon is as durable and resilient as it is lightweight and easy to wield. You’ll find it fits your hand like a glove, ensuring you hours of repetitive work free of pain. Plus, you’ll have a handle that can withstand years of use.

No Extra Tools to Change Blades 

Who wants to add another tool to the equation when changing blades? Not only does it interrupt your workflow, but an extra tool can increase your risk of injuries. Believe it or not, some box cutters and utility knives on the market don’t require an additional implement to switchblades. 

Sometimes, it’s only a matter of sliding a few buttons and pulling the blade out of its housing without getting extra tools involved. Easy, breezy, and perfect for an on-the-go person like you.

Ambidextrous Design 

The right tool works for the right hand. Well, the correct hand. If you’re a leftie, you’ve undoubtedly encountered your share of stumbling blocks when handling a cutter that’s not oriented to your dominant hand. 

Thankfully, some tools boast an ambidextrous design, meaning changing that utility knife into a leftie’s dream might only require a simple switch of blade orientations.

This feature helps prevent injuries and ensures you have a comfortable and safe cutting experience.

Blade Retraction Options

If you’re searching for a utility knife, consider your retraction options. Some cutters have a handful of different styles, such as manual retraction, auto-retractable, and smart retracting. 

Most tools have manual retraction, where you only need to activate a slider to expose and retract the blade. Auto-retractable usually means you have to push a button to automatically retract the blade, which is a safer option than manual retraction. 

Smart-retracting takes that safety a step further. With this style, the blade automatically retracts when it loses contact with its cutting material. There’s no need to fiddle with a slider or press a button. You won’t have to worry about accidentally cutting yourself from blade exposure or harming someone else.

The Right Tools Can Slice Various Materials

Some box cutters are versatile and easily adapted for other cutting tasks besides opening and breaking down cardboard boxes. You want a tool that’s capable of cutting whatever you need. Certain box cutters can also slice through plastic, clamshell packaging, triple-wall-corrugated cardboard, cardstock, plastic film, and heavy-duty tape. 

You’ll find specific utility knives are just as adaptable, cutting materials such as vinyl, foam insulation, old carpet, wallpaper, plastic wrap, and more. The key is finding a cutter that prioritizes safety and effectiveness above all else. You don’t want a tool with a limited performance scope, but one that’s up to the challenge.

By Liliana Alvarez

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