📧: mktg@novasafetytools.com

Ultimate Craft Knife Comparison

Ultimate Craft Knife Comparison

No matter you are making models, cutting craft paper, or trimming precisely detailed staff for your work, you may agree that craft knife is the best tool you need. There are many different names in the market for this knife. Craft knife, precision cutter, hobby knife…etc whatever you call it, it is the same. Here we are going to talk about some basic facts about craft knife and review a couple of options in the market.


There are many different blades used in a craft knife. The most common and popular one would be the #11 blade by X-ACTO. Here we will only concentrate the comparison on knives using this blade. The knife is made of an aluminum body. It comes with a knurled collar, which would tighten a collet with one slot. Once the slot is tightened with a blade, it holds the blade tight.

The original knife was invented in the 1930s by Sundel Doniger, a Jewish Polish immigrant to the United States. He had planned to sell it to surgeons as a scalpel but it was not acceptable, because it could not be cleaned. His brother-in-law, Daniel Glück (father of poet Louise Glück ), suggested that it might be a good craft tool.



X-ACTO #1 knife, z-series with safety cap


Among all the craft knives, X-ACTO is probably the first maker and the market leader. If accuracy and precision are what you are looking for, it would be the first choice. The handle itself is basic and classic. But it is the zirconium nitride-coated blade that makes the difference. The blade edge is extremely sharp, so handle it with care. Some user reports that the one slot isn't tight enough. While some other users may complain about the round handle which may let the knife rollover your table and drop off. Besides, the blade cannot be retracted back to the body, so, remember to put the safety cap back on after using it.


X-ACTO Gripster designer series


Similar weight as the #1 knife, grips knife is easy to use. The main difference is the rubberized grip which claims to provide a more comfortable gripping to users. As some users complain that the front knurl collar would be loosened by your finger while using, X-ACTO moves the tightening knurl to the rear. So, it won't loosen while using anymore.  Still, the blade sometimes isn't secured in the handle and comes off. And again, it is still around and non-retractable. You’d better put the cap back on whenever you put down the knife.


Fiskars Easy Change detail craft knife

You may say the design counters the shortfall of the X-ACTO knife. The changing of the blade is easier and also secure enough. Just by click down the end button, the blade will be loosened for changing. The body is triangular shaped which provides an ergonomic gripping. And more important, it would not roll over your desk and fall off the table. The shortfall is its plastic main body which may not provide the same durability as the aluminum ones. And the protection cap is a bit too short that one may get hurt when open the cap.


NOVA slim-retract knife SK-026

NOVA’s slim-retract knife provides a totally new cutting experience. It allows the user to retract the blade back with its side button. It is slim and can be laid flat on the table. And it is easier to change the blade.

With NOVA’s patented side button design, you may retract the blade back to the handle when you are not using it. More than that, if sometimes you don’t want to cut too deep, you may adjust the blade length with 3 different blade positions. These 3 positions are attentively designed to provide the best 3 cutting angles 45, 60 and freehand angles. What a great feature the market is longing for a long time. 

If you are sick of the rolling and falling of craft knives, NOVA would be your choice. The knife is slim and flat. It won’t roll around the table. And the slim design allows you to cut precisely for small objects.

For blade changing, it also provides a new convenient way by pull out the front cap to place a new blade.  No need to loosen and tighten the metal collar like the normal knives.


Fingertip Detail Knife

Designed to maximize your cutting precision, the Fingertip Detail Knife features an ergonomically sculpted finger-loop handle enhanced with for unmatched control, comfort and sensitivity.

A great choice for cutting paper, cardstock, thin plastic, photos, canvas and more, the knife comes stocked with a standard #11 blade that’s great for cutting in tight spaces or trimming edges.

Besides, a no-roll design and included a blade cap improve safety. Compatible with most standard blades, this versatile knife ensures you can always use the blade that's right for your materials and project.


Westcott 15154 Hobby Knife Titanium 5 Assorted Blade, Purple by Westcott

Westcott Titanium Bonded Hobby Knife includes an assortment of five-blade types to suit your crafting needs. Contoured rib grip handle added for comfort with every use, easy grip. Blade shapes include straight, seam ripper, buttonhole, rounded detail, and fine detail.


Excel Blade K47 Hobby knife


The Excel Blades K47 Executive Retractable Knife is a stylish lightweight hobby knife with a clean cutting blade for fine detail work, cutting, scoring, trimming, and stenciling with ultimate precision. This knife’s sleek and clean-cut design is perfect for travel. It can be neatly stored away while also being utilized in all craft endeavors.

The K47 creates a smooth cut with ease. This tool has been created for a wide range of hobby and arts and crafts – scrapbooking, model kits, paper crafts and more! The Retractable replacement blade allows for quick access along with safe storage. They are also able to slightly flex without breaking to prolong the life of the edge and tip. But some users may complain that the blade edge is much shorter than a standard #11 blade. It provides a smaller cutter surface.



We have just gone through a couple of popular craft knives. They have different strengths to suit your different usage. Xacto ones are good for a precise cut and come with a very sharp blade.  But it will roll on the desk and seems not safe enough.  Fiskars one is ergonomic and won’t roll. The plastic handle is a bit big and not durable. NOVA’s one is the only one can be retracted for safety. And it provides 3 different cutting length and angle. Slim design.  Fiskars’ Fingertip knife is also no-roll and seems to have a different gripping for precision cutting. Wescott’s one comes with different blades for multi-purpose. It is good for general use. And finally, Excel K47 is a pen cutter. Very handy but smaller blade.

Hope this comparison is helpful to you and you should be able to find a knife that suits you.

(PS: the product pictures from www.amazon.com )


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