The leather crafting industry cannot survive without leather cutting tools as they play a significant role in deciding the quality of the end product. However, as a player in the leather industry (whether a beginner or pro), you need to determine which tools you require the most.
Some of the standard leather crafting tools include the utility knife, mega cutter, scissors, awl, steel bevel, gouge, shoe knife, knife paring, knife saddler, mega cutter, micro trimmer, and more.
Did you know that China tops the list of leather exporters with the lion’s share of 40.8% of the global value of exported leather goods?
How to Identify the Best Cutting Tools
The primary quality to look for is the tool‘s sharpness, which is essential for effortless and effective cutting. Remember that a dull knife in the hands of a leather cutter is not only useless but may be dangerous. A dull blade requires you to put more pressure, leading to improper, uneven cutting and is likely to cause injuries.
Even the sharpest knives tend to dull through use and need to be sharpened to retain their cutting edge. Too much pressure on a dull knife can break the tip of the blade, making it useless.
Awls are sharp tools that end with a sharp metal point used to pierce or mark the leather. They are used to trace pattern templates or mark small spots where holes need to be punched (like in belts). These tools include ones with curved blades used to negotiate delicate areas.
Awls are one of the most versatile tools a leather crafter needs, and a specialized cutter may have a collection in different sizes. Also known as scratch awls, these cutting tools come in handy for scratching and putting marks on the leather.
They are great for drawing lines (where a knife cuts) or piercing point marks where holes go. Awls are a leather crafter’s favourite tool and a must in the toolbox.
Leather burnishers are rounded tools used to smooth out leather, which is known as burnishing. The surface of the leather and its rough edges are smoothened through friction. Burnishing ensures that the finished leather product wears well and lasts longer. It is common to burnish leather to attain a smooth finish and make it harder and stronger.
Burnishers come in plastic or unique wood and are hand-held tools. Burnishers are moved across the surface of the leather, generating heat through friction to make it smoother. While some industries prefer to use motorised tools for burnishing, hand-held burnishers are preferred most because leather requires precision to make it look unique.
The trick with burnishing leather lies in generating sufficient heat and transferring it. Hence, care should be taken to select burnishers made of heat-resistant material. Plastic burnishers are the least expensive leather finishing tools that are lightweight and easy to use.
The mega cutter is a sharp knife used to make precision cuts on leather. It features a thin blade capable of making detailed cuts required to finish a leather product to perfection.
A mega cutter is best for working on thin pieces of leather that need precision cuts at specific spots.
Summing it Up
The leather industry specialized, and it takes painstaking work to produce exquisite leather goods. To make the best leather products, you need to have the appropriate tools. The leather industry requires a wide range of craft tools to ensure quality.