Everything on model trains, model railroads, model railways, locomotives, model train layouts, scenery, wiring, DCC and more. Enjoy the world's best hobby... model railroading!

Tips For Using A Craft Knife Safely

A craft knife (with snap-off blades), a Stanley knife, or a scarpel is a very useful tool for anyone doing hobby work. These tools are great for giving a clean cut through cardboard, balsa wood, polystyrene etc. However be very careful, because they are also very efficient at cutting through flesh. That’s why surgeons use scarpels in operations!
I have found from experience it is best to make several cuts along the same line using light to medium pressure on the knife rather than pressing down hard on the knife to make one deep cut. The knife (or your grip) is more likely to slip under pressure and result in a serious cut to a finger (or damage to the object you are cutting).

So, try using several light cuts – it may take a bit longer, but you’ll be more likely to finish with the same number of fingers.

When cutting a straight line is also a good idea to use with a metal ruler rather than a less sturdy plastic ruler. Some metal rulers come with an integral finger guard.
Always keep your hand and fingers behind the direction you are cutting. It is a simple rule, but not applying the rule it is the reason many people get cut.
Also, apart from keeping the craft knife in a safe/secure place, make sure the blade is safely retracted after use.Many in the hobby prefer using a Stanley knife as they are more sturdy than the snap-off blade types. However, they are a little more bulky so it depends on the type of project you are working on, or what you prefer using. Whatever you choose be careful!
Share on FacebookEmail this to someoneTweet about this on TwitterShare on LinkedInShare on StumbleUponShare on Google+Share This Post

One Response to Tips For Using A Craft Knife Safely

  • Brod Brown says:

    Only ever use sharp blades. A dull blade is more likely to snag, you apply more pressure and it suddenly gives, ending up cutting something you didn’t want to – like your hand. Ask me how I know (2 scars and seven stitches)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

Add a photo or image related to your comment (JPEG only)

Reader Poll

Will your layout have a Christmas component this year?

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...

DCC Made Easy

DCC doesn't need to be complicated. Watch the video now.

Model Train Help Ebook

Railroad Technology Breakthroughs

Learn how to use micro controls to add life, interest, new features, and efficiency to your railroad.

Quick & Easy To Download

HO, N, OO, Z, or S Scale

Watch These Club Videos

Club members access helpful new resources each month: diagrams, video tutorials, articles, track plans and more. Watch the tour videos here.

Scenery Techniques

Watch the video now.


Submit Your Model Railroading Questions!

Before you submit your model railroading question please add some feedback, answers or comments to other postings on this model train blog. What goes around comes around... so if you can help others in the hobby, someone else may help you.

Important - Please add plenty of supporting details to any question you submit (eg. scale, solutions you have already tried etc.) , as the clearest and best questions usually get the best answers. Also, please check your spelling and punctuation as all questions need to be approved by the blog moderator prior to publication. Approved questions are normally published within a week (if not sooner).

Submit your model train questions here.

Make 6 Background Shops

Submit Your Article

Would you like to write an article and have it published?

Preference will be given to articles that help others progress in the hobby, maybe suggesting an idea for their layout, a quick tip or two... or perhaps a little bit of good advice based on your model railroading experiences.

We are all in this hobby together, so the more we can do to share ideas and help each other, the better.

Submit Your Article Here

Scenery & Layout Ideas

Share With Friends


Model Railroading Blog Archive