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This review is based from the perspective of a carpet fitter, although this knife has no shortage of other uses for which it is likely going to be just as good.
Carpet fitting is a hard job. To make it pay, you need to get through a lot of yardage. In order to do this easily, and effectively you need the right tools for the job. The main tool in any carpet fitters armoury is definately his knife. No matter what type of carpet they are fitting, or for what purpose, the knife must be easy to hold, easy to use and fairly robust.
Carpet comes in many different types, but none of these types is particularly easy on blades. Blades therefore wear out quickly so it is an important feature of any knife that it can store a few blades, and also that it is easy and quick to change them. last but not least, the knife should be useful in situations where precision is needed. as such, there should be no movement of the blade.
The knife is about seven inches long. this is a good length to allow it to be held in a firm grip. It is shaped with gentle curves that fit the hand very well. This combined with its light weight mean that it can be used for long periods of time without becoming awkward to hold due to fatigue in the hand. The front third of the knife consists of a brass turnning screw for opening and closing the knife to accept new blades. this does not get in the way, nor is there and rattling or movement from it. It seems a fine system, and I have experienced no problems with this portion of the knife. The knife itself bends slightly here, which is the standard shape for carpet fitting use. Sometimes known as dolphin shaped. It works perfectly for carpet fitting, as it allows you to get quite a lot of pressure to the blade in situations where the cut us hard. Overall, ergonomically the knife is great. It's shape fits it's purpose beautifully, and it does not tire the hand over long periods. 5 stars from me.
The knife is made from silver metal. It is strong, but also incredibly light. The knife itself has withstood substantial use by myself and looks to have retained it's original appearance. The only thing I would say, is that over time the metal area around the blade has actually been worn down slightly by coming in contact with so much carpet. This has not, however altered it's usefulness. As mentioned already, the brass screw for opening the knife does not wobble, and has been well constructed. I need to change blades on multiple occasions per fitting, and even with this extreme usage has not affected it. 5 stars again.
Changing the blade
As just mentioned, I need to change blades regularly. The large screw is easy to get at, and turns quickly and easily. The knife opens up to reveal a compartment that hold 15 blade comfortably, which is good as they come in sheaths of 5. The blade is held in place firmly, and cannot move as there is two notches at the top, specially shaped to hold 'stanley' blades. Changing the blade is a quick and easy experince, that has not got worse over time. It makes my use of the knife easier, and so it is 5 stars once more, from me.
In conclusion, this knife is perfect for the carpet fitter. It is easy to hold, and light enough that it is not sore to hold for long periods. It's shape means that it can be used with a great deal of precision and force at the same time. It has served me well for a long period of time, so I can have no issues with its durability. Its changing mechanism is easy to use, and does an effective job. I cannot fault this knife, and would not hesitate to suggest it's use for others in my situation. I can also see how it would be equally as good in other applications as well. Top marks all round!
Most DIY tool kits have a tools for all occasions, be it screwdrivers, hammer, pliers, wrenches... and the list goes on. Most of these tools are useful, but there's one little tool that is more useful than most as it can be used for cutting, slicing, shaving and, in many cases, even smoothing.
This useful tool is in fact called a knife, only this knife is not just any old knife, it is on fact a knife that has been going longer than Bruce Forsythe's joke book and is made well known company called Stanley. So yes, you've guessed it, this is called a Stanley knife. The name no doubt most people have heard of, with many having owned one of them in the past.
There are many makes of Stanley knives, in fact there are many makes of knives, but this Stanley knife is without doubt one of the best knives on ever made for the general DIYer, and even the professional as well.
This particular modal can be found under a couple of guises, such as 'xtreme' and even 'Titan', but at the end of the day, if it looks like a solid piece of metal with the well known Stanley name on it, then it is well worth buying as it will always come in handy no matter what jobs around the home you're doing, (maybe not all jobs... but you get the idea).
Firstly, we'll take a look at the size of this knife...
It's about 170mm long with the 'handle' end being 50mm wide whilst the 'blade' end is halt that, 25mm wide, with the entire knife being no more than 30mm thick.
The 'screw' is a cracking 30mm in diameter and is about 100mm along from the 'handle' end.
The 'screw', which you unscrew to open up the body of the knife to reveal the 'storage' area and the 'blade' area, is a great size so that it can be easily turned and, when using the knife, doesn't get in the way of anything at all. Plus, it is in just the right place, being about a third of the way down the body, so that
When it is opened it stays connected using two hinge type pieces of metal at the 'handle' end, which aren't 'stuck' into position so that you can actually take the two sections apart it needs be.
Inside there is a nice little storage section, need the 'handle' end, with the area to attach the blades at the front. This blade area has two little pieces of metal that are embedded in the top, which you should recognise as the housing for the notches that you find on any standard 'Stanley knife' blade.
The storage area in the handle can hold a good 20-25 blades, which when in place are stopped from rattling about by a simple piece of sponge, or foam.
Changing the blades couldn't be easier either, being a simple matter of unscrewing the large, easy to turn, gold screw on the side of the housing. Flipping it open, taking out the old blade, carefully putting it somewhere safe so no one can cut themselves. Then replacing the blade with a new one, slotting it in so the notches on the blade fit over the two little protruding metal bits. Then finally close the casing and turn the screw until the knife housing is locked tightly.
So what can we use this knife for then..?
You use this knife for what you'd use any DIY knife for, such as cutting carpets, wallpaper trimming, (at a push), stencil cutting, pencil sharpening, shaving, scraping, slicing wires and a lot more.
It can be used in most trades as well, carpenters, joiners, electricians, plumbers, assassins and others... the list for use and users is pretty endless really.
As I think I've mentioned. This is one of the most used tools in my collection, in a way, and it comes in handy what ever I'm doing, be it wiring a plug, sharpening my pencil, trimming a piece of material to fit somewhere or another and a lot more.
It is well built and the one I have I have had for many years, using it regularly and it has still managed to keep its strength.
It is the way the blade is gripped between the two metal sides, held firmly in position by the two 'prongs', being steadied by the metal top of the housing so that no matter how much pressure you put onto the knife itself there is no danger of the blade smashing through the casing causing severe damage to your hand. Unlike some of the cheap and nasty plastic knives that are on sale which shatter on the slightest contact with a sheet of paper and take half your hand off as the blade embeds itself in your index finger, (fourteen hours in A&E and three days off work...).
But there's none of this with this metal knife as it just won't shatter no matter what you hit it with.
It takes a matter of seconds to change the blades and as you can store many blades in the handle itself you should never have the problem where you run out of them when you most need them. I tend to keep the used blades in with the fresh blades, separating them with a small piece of foam, then, when I remember I exchange the used blades for fresh blades so that I'm ready to go.
Using it actually feels safe and very comfortable in the hand as well, being slightly curved in shape so that when you are using it you can get ample pressure on the down force without putting yourself in danger.
Knives are dangerous in the wrong hands and this one is no different in how dangerous it can be.
The blades are as sharp as... well, as sharp as a blade really and will slice through your skin in the blink of an eye, probably before you've even noticed, until you see the blood and see the flow of red stuff.
So what about the price of this safe to use in the right hands knife..?
You can pick this Stanley knife up for about £15.00 which is great value for money as it will last a lifetime if you treat it right.
In all, if you're after a cutting knife that is as strong as an ox yet as light as a feather, whilst being as safe to use as a pencil on paper, (almost), then you can't go wrong in buying this one. It doesn't shatter like those horrid, and may I say quite dangerous plastic bodied knives that are found on shop shelves as this one is made of a very strong, yet lightweight metal that may scratch but will never break.
FOR THE RECORD...
The blades themselves can be bought from most hardware stores for around £8.00 for a hundred of them. With each blade capable of lasting quite some time, depending on what you cut with them. Things like cutting carpets can go through these blades quicker than a madras through a five year old digestive system.
"High quality Fixed Blade Knife that is twice the size of a Stanley Titan knife / Holds 15 loose blades or dispenser of 10 / Knarled head allows precision cutting / Supplied with 10-blade dispenser / Features: Die-Cast Aluminium Body; Spring-Loaded Swivel; Magnetic Nose; Diamond Textured Handle / Specifications: L x W x D: 205 x 40 x 25mm."