Introduction: Broken Scissors Reparation


When your scissors brake you have few options what to do next with it. Probably the most sane idea, especially if you are dealing with "high" quality "Swedish" steel (see above), is to throw them out. And buy a new proper one. But where is the fun in that?

So after my scissors broke I chose to fix them.

Step 1: What I Used to Create Better and Nicer Scissors

For renovation i used (see photo above, starting from upper left corner clockwise):

  • two types of plywood for three layered handle (one plywood is thicker than the other, different colors of plywood results in better looking handles. Make sure that plywood used for middle layer is at least that thick as metal blade),
  • paper template (shape could be same as original handle, but it can be changed to suite better your needs. I tested new shape with a temporary cut cardboard handles (not displayed)),
  • scalpel (to cut paper template),
  • pencil (to draw paper template and to transfer shape from template to plywood),
  • double sided adhesive tape (to put plywood layers temporary together for sanding),
  • pliers (to turn screws and nuts on coping saw and to destroy old handles),
  • sandpaper of different grit (only one type is displayed, I used 60, 120, 240, 400, 1000 for this project),
  • spare saw blades (because they are easy to break, especially when not paying full attention during sawing),
  • wax (to lubricate the saw blade to make it move easier in the wood),
  • coping saw table with clamp,
  • coping saw,
  • drill,
  • and of course, original metal blades of the scissors.

Other thing used but not displayed in the picture:

  • Dremel rotary tool with cutting wheel and drum sander,
  • cardboard (to test new handles shape),
  • epoxy glue (suitable for wood and metal),
  • masking tape (to mask parts I did not want to expose to glue or lacquer),
  • clamps,
  • high gloss clear lacquer spray for surface finish (because it is easy to apply and it happened that I just had one).

Step 2: You Need to Break It First

Before handles removal be sure to copy shape of old handles to paper and mark where handles ends on metal blades so it is possible to position new handles properly. Then remove old plastic handles from the scissors' metal blades. I used Dremel rotary tool with cutting wheel and pliers to pry them away. To not damage scissors' final look be careful not to scratch metal during old handles removal.

Step 3: Cut It Out

Because those scissors are ambidextrous it is possible to use same template for both handles. I was not satisfied with original shape of the handles so I modified (widened) the shape a bit. To test the new shape I cut temporary handle from the cardboard and attached it to the blade to see how it feels and looks. Unfortunately I have no picture from this step, feel free to skip it if you are satisfied with old handles shape.

Take the paper template prepared in previous step and outline it on the plywood. Each handle is composed of three layers of plywood, outside layers are thicker and darker (I used beech), middle part is thinner and lighter (I used pine).

To cut the handle use coping saw. When cutting inside of the handle drill the hole first, pull the saw blade through and fix it in the saw. To make blade movements through wood easier wax the plate before use.

Put middle layer to the scissors blade (use mark you created in the previous step) and outline metal part on the plywood. When cutting the shape be sure on which side of the line to cut so the metal blade will fit the middle layer of plywood tightly. Make sure middle layer is same thickness as metal blade, sand it down if needed.

Use double sided adhesive tape to put three parts of the handle together. Sand both handles to the final shape, use as many grits as you wish to reach the desired surface finish. For rough sanding I used Dremel rotary tool with drum sander and I finished the sanding by hand with sandpapers of grit 60, 120, 240 and 400.

Of course it possible to sand the handles after they are glued to metal blades, but it is more complicated and there is a risk of scratching the metal and damaging the final look.

Step 4: Put It Together

After handles are cut out and sanded properly it is time to put everything together. To glue layers of plywood and metal blades together I used epoxy. Feel free to use any kind of epoxy you want, just be sure it is suitable for gluing wood and metal. My recommendation is to use one that has longer working time so you have time position everything correctly. Read the instructions how to use the epoxy. Use gloves, it is better for your hands to not to clean the epoxy from them after the work. Use masking tape if you are not sure if glue will not stick to clamps used to push glued parts together.

After you put everything together and clamp it properly, remove epoxy squeeze outs from the handles and especially from the metal blades. It is hard to remove hardened epoxy without risk of damaging the metal surface.

After epoxy cures use sandpaper to remove the excess from handles if needed.

Step 5: Finish

After gluing everything together and sanding off excessive cured epoxy I have applied few layers of high gloss clear lacquer to handles. I sanded the surface with 1000 grit sandpaper between applying the lacquer layers.

Be sure to apply masking tape to metal parts of the scissors before using lacquer.

In photos above you can see the final result. Nice, isn't it?

First Time Author Contest

Participated in the
First Time Author Contest