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Author Topic: Swan Morton blades - which ones do you use  (Read 675 times)
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mick66
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« on: September 23, 2021, 08:32:19 AM »

Hi

I’ve always used 10a bought in bulk x 100.  I’ve always like the 10a but it can be a bit ‘pointy’ and dulls easy.  Have looked at more curved ones in the past and wondered about the different uses.  Like the 6, 10 and 13.

Bit of a trivial question I know but thinking about it ... it is the weapon we probably use most after sandpaper!

Any personal favourites out there?

Mike

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cvasecuk
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« Reply #1 on: September 23, 2021, 08:44:22 AM »

For the last 30 years I too have used the 10a. I have occasionally tried others but always returned to it.
Ron
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Skymon
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« Reply #2 on: September 23, 2021, 10:11:58 AM »

I like a slender 11...
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Robmoff
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« Reply #3 on: September 23, 2021, 11:46:35 AM »

Another vote for the 11 (or even better the 11E which has a sharper point) but the 15 is ace for trimming covering.
I also use the larger blades (you need the larger handle to go with them) favourite there would be the 30.
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piecost
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« Reply #4 on: September 23, 2021, 12:39:33 PM »

I use 10A for cutting curves and snapped in half high carbon razor blades for straight cuts. I use pound shop Stanely blades for rougher work.
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TheLurker
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« Reply #5 on: September 23, 2021, 04:29:22 PM »

10a for general wood butchering and rough tissue work.  The 11a & 15a for fine tissue trimming and cutting lettering.  I'd use 13a (parrot beak) for lettering if I could get my hands on them, but I can't.

I have a quite a few No. 3 handles, labelled appropriately.

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TheLurker
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« Reply #6 on: May 06, 2022, 04:34:11 PM »

Less use, more disposal.

At the Chemists today picking up a scrip and I learnt that ..

1 - They will dispose of sharps such as scalpel blades safely if you bring them in in a suitable sharps container
2 - They will sell you a suitable 1 litre sharps container for a quid.  See pic.

I've been pondering what to do with dead blades for a while as I didn't want to put them in with the general metal recycling.
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Squirrelnet
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« Reply #7 on: May 06, 2022, 05:01:14 PM »

Pretty much 100% 10a blades , I buy a bulk pack.

I use these sharps bins too - also available on ebay . I've got through a couple of these and the guys at my local recycling centre know what to do with them

I think they get incinerated and then recycled
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raggedflyer
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« Reply #8 on: May 07, 2022, 04:59:32 AM »

10A for ever but it annoys me they do occasionally split adjacent to  the fixing slot if worked too hard.

Anyone have a recommended source?
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TheLurker
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« Reply #9 on: May 07, 2022, 05:15:39 AM »

Quote from: raggedflyer
Anyone have a recommended source?
I buy mine in small quantities (half a dozen packets or so at a time) from my local* artists' supply shops.



*One's in Oxford (25 miles) the other Cirencester (15 miles) so "local" is a bit of a stretch. Smiley
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Russ Lister
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« Reply #10 on: May 07, 2022, 06:19:35 AM »

I just went to the official site for Swan and Morton ... some interesting descriptions for the real applications for the various blade designs!
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Kiwi
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« Reply #11 on: May 08, 2022, 10:38:56 PM »

My Doctor buys the for me in boxes of 100 at wholesale rates and I reimburse him. The wholesaler will only sell to account holders, not retail customers.
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Mike Thomas
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« Reply #12 on: May 08, 2022, 11:29:30 PM »

I have used, and still do, most of the surgical blades mentioned above, depending on the job in hand. But my overall favourite ever since I was a kid, is the Swann Morton brass handle craft knife with a number 1 blade. The blade is a fraction thicker than the 10 and 11 surgical blades, and therefore a little stiffer. and less prone to wander. The blades also seem to stay sharper for longer .
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ZK-AUD
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« Reply #13 on: May 09, 2022, 02:36:39 AM »

I was going to post earlier but I totally agree with Comrade Thomas. Although I also use the 10A because I can get them reasonably cheaply at the local art supply outfit my preference is the #1 craft blade. I find them sharper and that they last longer. Obviously I use a scalpel but I also have the brass handle but admit to preferring the plastic ones.   I sometimes wonder whether the scalpel phenomenon is a bit like the Emperor’s new clothes (if you can get past that image)
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billdennis747
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« Reply #14 on: May 09, 2022, 03:05:12 AM »

Mike, I've also used the No.1 and plastic handle for - ever. I can't locate the word that means it feels more comfortable to use.
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ZK-AUD
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« Reply #15 on: May 09, 2022, 04:05:45 AM »

Yes Bill also agreed. Scalpel handles ( and the brass Swann Mortens) don’t sit comfortably in your paw, and if you drop one- MOVE!!!!!
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Prosper
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« Reply #16 on: May 09, 2022, 04:33:58 AM »

I'm the opposite. I not only find the scalpel handle more (insert the word Bill was looking for), but find the craft handle - errr, hard to handle. The craft handle I've had since boyhood (I was an Airfix or scratch-built kind of modeller though, not a flyer), and now I'm sad to say it's relegated to the lowly duty of scribing panel lines onto balsa/aliphatic sheet, which is why the blade is black, from heating in a candle flame.

Always No.11 blade. I have one or two other shapes but never use them. I resharpen and hone my No.11 blades for longer life, but admittedly the very sharp tip is hard to resharpen once dimmed.

Stephen.
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Skymon
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« Reply #17 on: May 09, 2022, 05:29:55 AM »

Mike, I've also used the No.1 and plastic handle for - ever. I can't locate the word that means it feels more comfortable to use.
Ergonomic?
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billdennis747
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« Reply #18 on: May 09, 2022, 05:31:34 AM »

Mike, I've also used the No.1 and plastic handle for - ever. I can't locate the word that means it feels more comfortable to use.
Ergonomic?
that's it
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raggedflyer
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« Reply #19 on: May 09, 2022, 07:45:46 AM »

Or the ergonomic design allows tactile and dextrous manipulation
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Prosper
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« Reply #20 on: May 09, 2022, 08:24:39 AM »

Quote from: raggedflyer
Or the ergonomic design allows tactile and dextrous manipulation
Ah! The Swan & Morton salesman chips in Grin. It's a slab of brass, for goodness' sake Grin Grin

Stephen.
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TheLurker
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« Reply #21 on: May 09, 2022, 10:47:09 AM »

As far as the S-M scalpel handles go I think it may depend on how old the handles you have are.  I've got a couple (a No.3 & a No. 4) which are a nice weight, balance well in the hand and are (mostly) smooth overall, but they are nigh on 30 years old.  They have a very, very slight brass sheen to them.  The newer handles are thinner, look to be drop forged from steel and have recesses for brand name etc, these are quite definitely less pleasant to handle and the balance is slightly "off".  Cheap and nasty is the description that springs to mind.  I have grumbled about this before.
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Russ Lister
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« Reply #22 on: May 09, 2022, 02:09:16 PM »

I like the feel of S&M handles ... I've got 4 or 5 including a bent one (no real idea ... could have been changing tyres on the bike). A ruler on the side of the latest! I used to like the larger size for some reason.
As Mike says, move if you drop one .... but not as bad as an X-acto handle with no 'anti roll bar' fitted!
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