I’m excited to walk you through my favorite OLFA knives, the X-Design series. The X-Design knives are the perfect utility knives to have on hand, and they come in many sizes ranging from 9mm to 25mm. The rubber molded grips on the handle are excellent and keep the knives from slipping in your hand regardless of work conditions. The handle also features a plastic body which means it doesn’t get freezing cold in the winter like other knives made out of aluminum.
My go-to X-Design knife is the 18mm LA-X Fiberglass Utility Knife, because it is the perfect size for many applications and I always find myself reaching for it. This knife also allows for a myriad of blade options including the solid non-snap blade or the hook blades, though I typically keep a black speed blade in this knife. Another handy part of the 18mm knife is the metal pick on the bottom, because it has so many uses. From prying out staples, opening paint cans and scoring material without slicing, it comes in handy no matter what project you’re working on.
Two other knives in the X-Design series I often find in my tool belt are the 9mm and 25mm. I often use the 9mm XA-1 Fiberglass Precision Knife when I am working on a project with my vinyl cutter. After the vinyl cutter makes the shapes it’s the perfect size to weed out the vinyl graphics and decals from the sheet. I need to be able to cut and then “pick” the vinyl and this knife is the perfect size for the detail work.
I use the 25mm XH-1 Fiberglass Rubber-Grip Ratchet-Lock Knife when I’m doing a project that requires a pull saw blade because that’s the only blade I use in this knife. It is the most helpful tool in a carpenter’s bag because it’s so small and compact! I use this blade in the ratchet-lock vs. the auto-lock because I can crank the lock extremely tight to ensure the blade will stay where it is supposed to be. I use this knife and saw blade for flush cutting plugs and trim, on-the-fly notches and cuts, and for detail adjustments or cuts on finished work in tight quarters.
I hope you find the X-Design knives as helpful as I do!
Lucas Mann D’Angelo is a carpenter and fabricator based out of Eastern MA, who loves to work with wood and metal. He is also a vintage machinery enthusiast and really enjoys the process of restoring/rebuilding antique tools and machinery. Whether it's trimming out a room or machining replacement parts for a restoration, I'm always up for a challenge and love problem solving. Follow Lucas on Instagram and Youtube to stay up-to-date on his projects.