X-Acto Brand CRAP!

Discussion in 'Tools of the Trade' started by Bowdenja, Mar 22, 2007.

  1. Bowdenja

    Bowdenja Active Member

    OK........... not sure if I wanted to put this here or in the *****es & gripes........... so since it is a tool this one won out.

    I will NEVER EVER buy X-Acto brand blades again.......... NEVER!

    I put a brand new X-Acto brand blade in my knife to start Nobi's XB-51, and I didn't even get the first piece cut out before it slipped and would not cut again with out excessive pressure. It was like it hit something on my mat.......... no nothing is there. Now I have been having this problem, and I thought it was my mat.......... now I know it's not the mat. They do not stand up to 110# Card Stock. I removed the blade, put in an EXCEL brand............ finished the part and have not looked back.

    NO MORE X-CRAPO brand for me I will only buy EXCEL brand blades........period.

    OK............. that is off my chest..............back to Nobi's wonderful new model:grin:

    Oh.......... anybody want some X-Crapo blades.........check my garbage.

  2. Amazyah

    Amazyah Senior Member

    :rofl: check my garbage!:rofl:

    Sorry John, about your predicament, but that part was pretty funny!:grin:

  3. rickstef

    rickstef Guest

    to paraphrase Larry the Cable Guy, that's funny right there, no matter who you are
  4. paper warrior

    paper warrior Member

    Excel blades, X-acto grip. Need I say more?
  5. Darwin

    Darwin Member

    I can't say the problem is confined to Xacto, or even a generalization re Xacto. I've had a similar experience with an uber skiver blade, and have had many, many Xacto blades that gave great service, giving good cuts right up until the freaking tip broke off, even on 110 pound stock. Which leads to my big gripe....why the hell do I have to pay for 3/4-inch of cutting surface when all I use is the last 1/16 inch? I've gotten some blades with some off-brand knife/cutting pad combos that are great (and ostensibly cheap) stenciling blades (only about 1/8 inch wide, with cutting surface maybe 3/16 inch long at most, and much stronger tip as the tip is not nearly as severely tapered as a #11 blade...cutting surface on both ends, as well), but the only way I can find replacement blades is to buy another $10 knife/cutting pad combo. The closest I can find is the blade for the Xacto swiveling knife, at nearly a buck each. Grump, grump, grump. As I told my boss during this years' performance review, I'M NOT GRUFF....just outspoken and blunt.:twisted:
  6. Bowdenja

    Bowdenja Active Member

    Gee Darwin..........I get accused of being the same way:grin:

    I finally told em .......... if I'm at work.......... I'm pi$$ed off.......... nothing personal, now leave me alone!

    I too feel the same way on the blade thing...........but to be truthful, I got what I thought was a good deal on the X-Axto blades..........wrong!

    I used EXCEL before and was amazed at how long I could use them........but not with these X-acto's. Man it would be like I hit a gob of super glue or something........... it would jump/skip on the paper and slide across the top of it.:cry:

    Never again...........EXCEL only.

  7. swiftsword

    swiftsword Member

    I use only OLFA. No complaints ;)


  8. Bengt F

    Bengt F Active Member

    Knife Blades

    Hi John,

    Have you ever tried scalpels? I use the Swann & Morton retractable handle and the # E11 or # 11 (slightly stiffer) blades: http://www.craftknives.co.uk/products/index.html
    Retract-away handle: http://www.craftknives.co.uk/products/retractaway.html
    They last very long and are easy to sharpen on a thin sharpening stone.

    I think the Xacto or Excel blades are too thick for minute cutting work. However, they are excellent for cutting 1mm card for formers. Alternatively, I use a big hobby/craft knife with blade bits that can be snapped off, to always have a fresh blade.

    This is a very personal matter, though - and a matter of trial and error.
    Bengt :D
  9. Gil

    Gil Active Member

    A Second for Scalpels

    Hi John,

    I second Bengt's recommendation for scalpels. I've been using them for several years now. At first I snapped the blades off due to using the same force expected for Xacto blades. Upon close examination I found that I was cutting through the paper and was actually cutting the matt instead. Lightening up on the cutting force allows for additional control of the cut. I can safely say that for most cutting tasks I now reach for the scalpel. Do a search on Widget Supply under "scalpels". They also carry the molded plastic handles that make life easier for the dedicated paper modelist...,

  10. MOS95B

    MOS95B Member

    I hate the way the Exacto blades are so "iffy". I'm still using the blades that came with my handle. The first blade made it easily through 3 or 4 2-3 page models, no sweat. Thye next one had to be sharpened about once a day for a 4 or 5 page model. The next one, no problems. The last one barely made it through one Fly'N Things model (3 pages of very few parts)

    Unfortunately, I haven't tried any other brands to compare results. So I can't say for sure if it's the blades, the paper, or the operator....
  11. airbob

    airbob Member

    Thanks for the article....I just noted that the #11 Exacto are too damm sharp and pointy for working well with paper....I do prefer the #26 of the other brand...it has a much better cutting surface....much easier to continue cutting along a straight line...and anything else for that matter.....I agree the #11 Exacto are :mad: .....anyone want the 100 i just ordered?:cry: ....i just ordered 100 of the #26:grin: ....a much better blade....Bob out...
  12. paper warrior

    paper warrior Member

    I just got a Fischer scalpel, it came with a blade. I've gone through about 100 parts with it, and it works perfectly. Almost glides, now my primary knife.
  13. milenio3

    milenio3 Active Member

    And I THOUGHT it was me! No wonder I bought only EXCEL blades, almost without noticing it. And now that John refers to this situation, I went... huh, no wonder!
  14. milenio3

    milenio3 Active Member

    John, I just hope you didn't damp the XB-51 because of this. The fuselage was looking great.
  15. cgutzmer

    cgutzmer Guest

    Yeah, I did a similar write up on xacto vs excel - xacto bites.

    Might give the scalpels a try though!
  16. Bowdenja

    Bowdenja Active Member

    Thanks guys............. I thought it was my mat......... I $crewed up and got some CA glue on a spot.............. first couple times the X-Axcto blades skipped I chalked it up to that................ this time I was for sure it wasn't the mat.............I just re-surfaced it, so I know there was NO CA glue on it. And when that brand new out of the box sharp blade skipped before I even cut the first part out.............. that was the last straw!

    Milenio........... No the XB-51 is just fine.............I'll resume it very soon. Working on the Beta B-25 right now. It was the very first part I was cutting on it, when that "new" blade quit.:cry:

    Gill & Bengt....... I appreciate the advice, I'll do some looking into the scaples........... neither of you guys have steered me wrong on any other advice. But I have to say that I have used the ole #11 for a long time, way before the card model hobby, and old habits are getting harder and harder for me to break:oops:

    Chris.......... I remember the post.......... too well! I think most of us prefered the EXCEL brand in that post, but as I said I got such a good deal on these crapo blades............. now I really know why.:cry: Won't happen again!

    Carl........... you are right about everyone having their own preferences............ it also points to that harder to change old habits thing. Seems like whatever we start with........... tools or techniques......... unless it just the bees knees we stick to em.............. That's not either good or bad, just shows how diverse this hobby and the hobbiest are!

  17. Jim Nunn

    Jim Nunn Member

    The tip breaking off is my pet peeve too

    I was told that Xacto does not burnish the edge of their blades while Excel does. My experience is that Excel has a better edge then Xacto and the tip seems to not brake off as easily as the Xacto

    The best blades I have used were purchased in bulk from my favorite hobby shop 100 blades for $12.99. No name on the box part number is BUKR0311 and they are marked as “Made in USA”

    Jim Nunn
  18. ekuth

    ekuth Active Member

    I... um...

    *looks around furtively*

    still use X-Acto #2 Large Fine point blades for all my work. :oops:

    Average of 3 - 5 models per blade and I use 110 lb weight cardstock almost exclusively.

    Not saying I wouldn't switch, but I haven't done so yet.
  19. Gil

    Gil Active Member

    Sharp Steel & How to Retain It...,

    I was just doing some heavy line cuts with a large handled Xacto knife. It's had the same blade in it for years. It gets sharpened occasionally using tri-chromium oxide buffing compound on a hard felt Dremel wheel. The blade number is a #24 and its recommended use is for deburring, stripping and gasket cutting.

    An interesting point is that this is a blade that Xacto sells in quantity to industry and can't possibly screw up the business as it probably represents a rather large proportion of their overall sales. Eventually I'll probably bite the bullet and replace this with an Olfa snap blade for steel rule edge cuts...,

  20. jparenti

    jparenti Member

    I prefer using my Olfa snap-off blade, since it just seems to last longer. I thought it was just me that hated it when an X-acto lost it's tip. I use #11 blades exculsively, since so many of the parts I cut out are less than the area of a postage stamp. :grin:
    I've never used an Excel blade. :oops: I have a couple Excel saws that fit into a big red handle that came with a chisel blade, but I guess it never occurred to me to use anything else but an X-acto blade for my paper models. I will have to try the Excels out. Anything to keep from using a 5 pack of blades in a week. I think I'm consuming about 10% of the world's production capacity of steel replacing those stinking blades (when only 1/16 of an inch is dull)! :wink:

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