DIY hot knife

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Sean Ragan has put his old soldering iron to good use:

The upgrade left me with a surplus soldering iron and the opportunity to try a modification which first occurred to me when I was 10 or 11 and still playing around with Dad’s tools in our old garage, which was to try to adapt a soldering pencil barrel to accept the threads of an X-acto Type A blade holder. The idea was to be able to conveniently adapt my trusty hobby knife for hot-blade work, useful for instance in the cutting of plastics.

2 thoughts on “DIY hot knife

  1. I’ve done this before – except the thread on the soldering iron happened to match the thread on the knife head so I didn’t have to do as much work.

    I had problems with mine, though. When it was heated, the knife head actually softened a bit and would not hold the blade. It was a long time ago, but I’m pretty sure it was a cheap knife (not Xacto or another quality brand) so that’s probably the reason.

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Becky Stern is a Content Creator at Autodesk/Instructables, and part time faculty at New York’s School of Visual Arts Products of Design grad program. Making and sharing are her two biggest passions, and she's created hundreds of free online DIY tutorials and videos, mostly about technology and its intersection with crafts. Find her @bekathwia on YouTube/Twitter/Instagram.

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