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Old May 24, 2006, 10:38 AM
soholingo is offline
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Laurel, MD
Joined May 2001
12,706 Posts
xacto blades and wood cutting...

I bought some hobby xacto blade (some off brand I can't remember) and the quality is barely passable. I can make ONE sharp cut through with these blades before they start dulling. In order to carve up one 4"x8" piece of balsa I may need to change blades 5 times. Is this normal?

If so, is there a better way to cut balsa ribs and pieces?

How do you guys cut thin ply wood? You know the kind of ply that's used as formers in a fuse or as fuse doublers?


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Old May 24, 2006, 12:27 PM
BMatthews is offline
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The 'Wack, BC, Canada
Joined Oct 2002
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That's definetly NOT normal. It sounds like you got a batch of blades that didn't get run through the heat treatment process properley and that they are all still in the soft annealed state. Try getting some from a different supplier or ask that you be able to test a blade from the replacement box of blades. Try bending a blade. If it's properley hardened it'll most likely bend quite a ways and then snap at the end of the handle collet where all the pressure is (wear safety glasses! It'll fly like a bullet!) If it bends softly with little or no springy tendency then it's not hardened. Test any replacements even if it does cost you a blade to do so.

For plywood I cut the thin stuff with scissors or knife. For 1/16 and thicker I use my power scroll saw or bandsaw (I've got one of each, I'm spoiled).
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Old May 24, 2006, 06:26 PM
R. Carver is offline
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A clubmember had the same problem recently and called the customer service line. Turns out there WAS a batch that went out that was not heat treated properly, and they sent a new pack of blades.
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