good wire cutter in the UK - recommendations?

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ilonaliss

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I finally made a semi-decent looking gradient soap. I was pretty happy with it until I took my kitchen knife to it and now I have 6 wonky bars that won't even stand up straight. I am a hobbyist so I should probably save my money but unfortunately the perfectionist in me cries every time the look of my soap is ruined by my helpless inability to cut in straight lines. I cannot seem to find a decent single-wire cutter in the UK. All the ones on Amazon have bad reviews and I am at a loss why soap making suppliers don't stock any. UK soapers- if you have any recommendations, please let me know.
 
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Have you looked on Etsy? I believe there are some UK sellers there who make soap tools and have some pretty good reviews.

PS - I am a hobbyist as well, but also cannot cut anything straight. The multibar cutter that I bought was worth the money to have nice-looking bars!
 
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Tara_H

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If you're still checking this thread, you can have my 2 cents...

I bought this one quite recently: Handmade Soap Mould Wooden Soap Cutter Set, 9 Piece Soap Making Supplies - Wood Box, Silicone Mould, Adjustable Soap Cutter, Straight Knife, Crinkle Cutter, Wire Slicer: Amazon.co.uk: Kitchen & Home

I wouldn't recommend it as a product, and I wouldn't give it a high rating for the following reasons:
  • It has markings to indicate how many cm the stop block is placed from the cut line; however they are not accurate and slightly slanted, which means they make it harder to cut at a right angle.
  • The stop block is held in place with a round-headed bolt through a circular hole, so there's nothing to stop it from twisting during use. Also, it needs to be tightened by a screwdriver from underneath while holding the wingnut and avoiding moving the block out of alignment.
  • The kerf underneath the bar is not quite deep enough, so if there's any amount of resistance it may not quite cut all the way through.
  • The cutter itself is a saw handle, a piece of wire, and a couple of washers, so I felt a bit silly buying something so cobbled together when I could have done it myself.
  • The bottom and sides are all one piece so it's a pain to clean if the soap is a little soft and sticks in the grooves. I've had to use pipe cleaners to get it properly clean.
Having said all of that, I don't regret buying it, believe it or not! Sure, it has many flaws, but it has still been a big improvement over my previous solution (a long kitchen knife in a mitre block). For the price, and given that it also included a silicone loaf mould and the box for it, I'm happy enough. It's also helped me get a feel for what needs to be improved and I'll probably build my own next time I need an upgrade, taking all those elements into account.
 

ilonaliss

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Thanks for reporting back, Tara! I actually considered getting the same wire cutter but decided against it because I already have a million silicone moulds. Having read your review, I'm glad I didn't buy it! I have looked on Etsy, and there are some reasonably priced single-wire cutters there but they always come with eye-watering shipping :( Kitchen knife it is for now, then! Thanks for your help everyone!
 

earlene

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  • The kerf underneath the bar is not quite deep enough, so if there's any amount of resistance it may not quite cut all the way through.
  • The cutter itself is a saw handle, a piece of wire, and a couple of washers, so I felt a bit silly buying something so cobbled together when I could have done it myself.
Have you tried tightening the wire on the cutter? Be careful not to overtighten because that can cause it to snap, but when it is too loose, the slackness can be the cause for not cutting all the way through, as a taught wire withstands resistance better than a slack wire.

Also after use, loosen the wire again to diminish strain on the wire. Traditionally, I believe, the wires are kept somewhat slack during shipping for this very reason.
 

Tara_H

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Have you tried tightening the wire on the cutter? Be careful not to overtighten because that can cause it to snap, but when it is too loose, the slackness can be the cause for not cutting all the way through, as a taught wire withstands resistance better than a slack wire.

Also after use, loosen the wire again to diminish strain on the wire. Traditionally, I believe, the wires are kept somewhat slack during shipping for this very reason.
Thanks Earlene :)
Unfortunately it's not so fancy as to be adjustable! It's literally one piece of wire, twisted around a washer at each end, then inserted into the part of a saw that would hold the blade.
16165971084036701196833746312859.jpg

It does the trick for the moment anyway, and I've ordered some orthodontic wire and some guitar tuning keys from Wish, so I'll make my own improved version when those show up.
 

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