Hot Wire Foam cutter

Simple Hot Wire Foam Cutter made out of an old kitchen cutting board

Maker/DIY

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Description

This is a hot wire cutting system made from an old cutting board my wife was throwing out. It features about 9cm of cutting height, 16cm of reach, and a rubber band to tension the wire, and printed feet to elevate the cutting board.

The main horizontal arm is mounted to the vertical support via a pivot. The rubber band on the end keeps the wire in tension while heated up. The wire is looped around the screws as shown in the picture. Not shown in the picture are the power leads alligator clipped to the 6-32 screws at both ends of the wire.

On my power supply with 40 gauge nichrome wire,  I was pushing 8 to 9VDC, at about 300mA to cut closed cell Polyethylene foam.  But power requirements will depend on what you're cutting and the wire you use.

Sketchup files are included so feel free to modify as you see fit.

The arm is a relatively long piece measuring 243mm from the ends of the mouse-ears I put in the model. You may have to break it up to print.

It's all printable without support, with just a little bridge required on the vertical stand piece.

Materials and methods

- Old Cutting Board or similar flat object
- M4 or 6-32 screws.
- Rubber Band
- Nichrome wire (I used 40 gauge)
- Power supply (~9V, ~500mA)

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