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Chris Hennes

Plastic wrap box design: sliding cutters

19 posts in this topic

Over the past years consumer-grade plastic wrap boxes seem to have become progressively worse, in my opinion. Between dull "blades," annoying placement of the blades on the box, lack of tabs to hold the roll in, and various other minor quibbles, I am seriously considering mail-ordering. The latest "innovation" is the silly slider gizmo:

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This is quite possibly the most annoying "feature" in food storage packaging today. To use it you have to slow down, adjust the position of the little cutter, slip some wrap under it, and only then, slide the thingamajig to cut the plastic. WHAT!!!???!!! Pain in the butt. I hate them. Am I alone? Were the focus groups right? Does the rest of the world think these things are great? Am I just doing it wrong?!?


Chris Hennes
Director of Operations
chennes@egullet.org

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The sliding cutter on your box looks like a pain. You need to get one with a sliding cutter like I have.

gallery_25849_641_82000.jpg

The plastic gets pulled from the slot at the top, and then right over the plastic bar that the cutter slides through. Just pull the plastic across the bar, and slide this across it:

gallery_25849_641_34388.jpg

This one happens to work really well. The blade is sharp enough that I can slice the plastic with very little pressure -- pushing it with one finger.

The only problem with this set up is that if you lose the little plastic dohickey with the blade -- and it's happened -- you're SOL.

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I called and complained about the first box of Saran Wrap™ I bought that had that stupid slider. The slider had come off and, as noted above, I was SOL. They made polite noises and sent me a coupon for a free box of either type of wrap. I bought the ordinary serrated-edge-type box. I'm not sure that stuff is available any more, though.

How I do hate "innovations" that don't work. :angry:


Nancy Smith, aka "Smithy"
HosteG Forumsnsmith@egstaff.org

"Every day should be filled with something delicious, because life is too short not to spoil yourself. " -- Ling (with permission)

"There comes a time in every project when you have to shoot the engineer and start production." -- author unknown

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One pet peeve of mine, primarily for industrial sized saran wraps...Is when Somebody mistakenly screws up the roll, i.e keeps wrapping stuff when the entire roll doesn't comes out, yet they continue using a portion of it and don't bother fixing it. Causing whomever, usually myself to take countless time to cut and backtrack to where the problem originated.

Oh what a pain in the butt. Especially with the huge ones that are heavy as heck.

Jim

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I saw an ad for these wrap dispensers that are supposed to work with either plastic or foil wrap. The idea is that you put the roll inside, pull out what you need, and pull down the cover which holds the cutter bar. The reviews are good, but I'm still skeptical that there is any effective solution for dealing with plastic wrap.

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One pet peeve of mine, primarily for industrial sized saran wraps...Is when Somebody mistakenly screws up the roll, i.e keeps wrapping stuff when the entire roll doesn't comes out, yet they continue using a portion of it and don't bother fixing it. Causing whomever, usually myself to take countless time to cut and backtrack to where the problem originated.

Oh what a pain in the butt. Especially with the huge ones that are heavy as heck.

Jim

Ha! I used to purposefully do that in order to get under my old sous chefs skin. She would start screaming "Who f*cked the plastic wrap again?!".

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I must be the only person on earth who liked the plastic wrap slide cutter. I was quite peeved when Reynolds discontinued that feature months ago and went back to the wrist-mangling serrated cutter of yesteryear. I do like the more streamlined box that can easily fit in a drawer -- in my case, a narrow shelf between the pantry wall and the refrigerator. But for weeks and weeks, I kept looking for plastic wrap with the new slide cutter mechanism, for naught. It appears more than one of you called in to complain about it. :hmmm:

Since then, I've learned to make peace with the old design. It's a bit faster, I suppose, but I'm accident prone and preferred not having so many sharp edges around. I just hate when you get accustomed to a product only to have it yanked from the shelves without warning.

I need to get out more. :rolleyes:

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I must be the only person on earth who liked the plastic wrap slide cutter.  I was quite peeved when Reynolds discontinued that feature months ago and went back to the wrist-mangling serrated cutter of yesteryear.  I do like the more streamlined box that can easily fit in a drawer -- in my case, a narrow shelf between the pantry wall and the refrigerator.  But for weeks and weeks, I kept looking for plastic wrap with the new slide cutter mechanism, for naught.  It appears more than one of you called in to complain about it.   :hmmm:

Since then, I've learned to make peace with the old design.  It's a bit faster, I suppose, but I'm accident prone and preferred not having so many sharp edges around.  I just hate when you get accustomed to a product only to have it yanked from the shelves without warning. 

I need to get out more.   :rolleyes:

I could have written this post! I agree completely with everything you said. I am even more pitiful than you (re: the "need to get out more" comment) in that I actually emailed Reynolds about this. I got an email back that basically said, "go away, you plastic wrap geek" :raz: . I won't use anything but Reynolds, though, so I am out of luck.

ETA: I will defend my love of the little cutter thingy by saying that with my hand/wrist issues (pain, neuropathy, weakness), it was easier to use than the serrated edge cutter.


Edited by Kim Shook (log)

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I, too, am in favour of the plastic slider/cutter. I've had one too many wrist scraping incidents with the metal teeth. But I think the design on the industrial boxes (in my pictures above) is better than the design on the one Chris posted.

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I, too, am in favour of the plastic slider/cutter.  I've had one too many wrist scraping incidents with the metal teeth.  But I think the design on the industrial boxes (in my pictures above) is better than the design on the one Chris posted.

I think this is a good point: the use of the commercial box differs in a very fundamental way, I think. With the commercial box, the box is sitting on the counter next to the item you are covering. You reach across the item with your left hand (assuming the box is on the right, of course) and pull the wrap across, then use your other hand to slide the cutter. The action is almost the opposite with the consumer boxes, where I use them by picking up the whole box, grabbing the plastic wrap with my left hand and sweeping the box across the item I am wrapping. With the metal blade cutter a quick yank at this point sliced off the wrap and you were done. With the plastic cutter I have to set the box down, fiddle with getting the cutter and plastic wrap aligned, and then slide the cutter. Much slower and more frustrating. I can't say I can recall ever injuring myself with the metal zigzag cutter, but maybe I've just blocked the awful memories :smile:.


Chris Hennes
Director of Operations
chennes@egullet.org

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I can't say I can recall ever injuring myself with the metal zigzag cutter, but maybe I've just blocked the awful memories :smile:.

I have nerve damage on one hand from a serrated edged box. Mind you, it was one of the big, freakin' industrial metal case boxes of plastic wrap...


Karen Dar Woon

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I, too, am in favour of the plastic slider/cutter.  I've had one too many wrist scraping incidents with the metal teeth.  But I think the design on the industrial boxes (in my pictures above) is better than the design on the one Chris posted.

I think this is a good point: the use of the commercial box differs in a very fundamental way, I think. With the commercial box, the box is sitting on the counter next to the item you are covering. You reach across the item with your left hand (assuming the box is on the right, of course) and pull the wrap across, then use your other hand to slide the cutter. The action is almost the opposite with the consumer boxes, where I use them by picking up the whole box, grabbing the plastic wrap with my left hand and sweeping the box across the item I am wrapping. With the metal blade cutter a quick yank at this point sliced off the wrap and you were done. With the plastic cutter I have to set the box down, fiddle with getting the cutter and plastic wrap aligned, and then slide the cutter. Much slower and more frustrating. I can't say I can recall ever injuring myself with the metal zigzag cutter, but maybe I've just blocked the awful memories :smile:.

You describe the motion with the home-use boxes perfectly, Chris. I've been thinking that when we remodel our kitchen I want a drawer or cabinet door that's designed to HOLD the boxes of plastic wrap, foil, and so forth to make them into more useful dispensers.


Nancy Smith, aka "Smithy"
HosteG Forumsnsmith@egstaff.org

"Every day should be filled with something delicious, because life is too short not to spoil yourself. " -- Ling (with permission)

"There comes a time in every project when you have to shoot the engineer and start production." -- author unknown

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I was flummoxed when I got home with one of the slidey ones the first time. Had to have a friend walk me through it. It worked really well. Then suddenly I was getting the wrap crunched into the slider. I often call out for one of the teens to come hold the box so I can get a taught fit and slide/slice neatly. Pain in the patooty. I found an old serrated cutter box in the pantry and look forward to using it when this one is done. Yes- I also have radial nerve damage, but the mental frustration is way worse than the minor physical ouch.

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Those slide-y cutters were evil. EVIL, do you hear me? I actually quit buying Reynolds plastic wrap (which is the only *domestic* plastic wrap I think is worth a damn........) for about a year when they had them. I struggled through Saran and Glad and store-brand stuff and I don't-know-what-else, none of which ever stuck to anything but ITSELF, to avoid that hideous slide-y cutter thing.

Yes, I've given myself a couple of good cuts on the metal teeth thingies on the boxes of various kitchen wraps. Good news is, eventually I learn to avoid the pain-causing thing.

Happily, Reynolds has seen the error of their way, and I am back to using the only *domestic* plastic wrap that actually works. Small household, even smaller kitchen, hence the *domestic* stuff is the best option.

Of course, it is a total mystery to me how even the Reynolds plastic wrap can only seal ONCE, and never ever again, even if you only lift the teensiest, tiniest little edge of the stuff, but that's probably another topic. :hmmm::huh:


--Roberta--

"Let's slip out of these wet clothes, and into a dry Martini" - Robert Benchley

Pierogi's eG Foodblog

My *outside* blog, "A Pound Of Yeast"

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I think this is cool. Stretch Tite brand, (now sold at Costco) acctually gives you a choice of what type of cutter to use. They put a slide cut insert inside the roll that if you want to you can snap over the serrated teeth. I tried it and I think it works pretty smoothly.

Also Stretch Tite brand got top ratings in a recent Cooks Illustrated products testing.


"enjoy every sandwich" Warren Zevon

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I have the Stretch-tite Wrapmaster (third item down). I have mine mounted on the wall under a kitchen cabinet. It's great.

I also have this. I've been using it for over 4 years and keep it on the counter. You can just place your bowl or whatever you're covering in front of it, pull the plastic wrap over the top of the bowl, hit the top of the dispenser, and it falls perfectly over the bowl. Works like a dream. I'd considered mounting it on the wall so as to not take up counter space, but I really like the way it so easily covers things this way. No fighting with the wrap sticking together. And it's really not that big.

Highly recommend it, either way you end up using it.

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I love the slide-y thing - so much that every year when I go to the States, I buy a roll of it. As someone pointed out earlier, Costco carries it and because it's Costco size (big) the roll lasts until my next visit to the States.

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