HOME > Chowhound > Cookware >

Manual Can Opener?

liu Mar 11, 2012 01:20 PM

What is a GREAT manual can opener?

Our Zyliss Lock-n-Lift just broke; I didn't love it anyhow. There have been many others before it that I also haven't loved...so what should I get next?

Surprisingly, there are many features to consider in this simple kitchen tool:

Does the handle turn smoothly?
Does the blade cut the lid itself or does it separate the lid from the can at the seam?
Does the can opener touch the food inside?
Can the can opener be cleaned in the dishwasher or does it have to be hand-washed?
Does the can opener lift the cut lid out of the can?
How durable is the cutting blade?
Does the blade shred the metal lid and leave little bits of metal in the food?
Is the cut lid sharp? Does the can opener leave sharp edges on the cut can?

Tell me what is your favorite manual can opener -- and why, please.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. lynnlato RE: liu Mar 11, 2012 01:27 PM

    I have a Kuhn Rikon can opener that I LOVE and I've recommended it countless times. I bought it at Sur La Table for like $20-$30 bucks and it was worth every penny. Flawless hand crank mechanism. It cuts the top of the can off in one go around. It doesnt touch the food. It has a side pinching mechanism that you can use to lift off the lid. No shredding. It's easy, safe, smooth and consistent.


    6 Replies
    1. re: lynnlato
      liu RE: lynnlato Mar 11, 2012 01:37 PM

      Hi, lynnlato!

      Your recommendation is very helpful...thank you!

      Hmmm -- I have never used a single handle can opener. How does it grip? Is the hold stable while you crank the opener?

      1. re: liu
        lynnlato RE: liu Mar 11, 2012 02:09 PM

        Very stable. I think most our single handle nowadays. The handle has nothing to do with the gripping mechanism. Trust me, this is an amazing can opener. The ratings/reviews on Amazon.com are mostly 5 stars. Here's a link: http://www.amazon.com/Kuhn-Rikon-Delu...

        1. re: lynnlato
          liu RE: lynnlato Mar 11, 2012 02:22 PM

          You are making it so easy for me with all your links; thanks for your extra effort!

          Yes, in my previous searches I noticed all the single-handle can openers. Old habits die hard, so initially this appeared awkward to me. However, I will try to bring myself into the 21st century and place this Kuhn-Rikon can opener on my list for serious consideration.

          1. re: liu
            Isolda RE: liu Mar 11, 2012 04:57 PM

            I have the same opener (Kuhn Rikon) and although I appreciate the fact that it cuts the lid off cleanly leaving no jagged edges, I find it very hard to use when opening multiple cans. It's just too much work. If I'm doing something involving multiple cans of beans, diced tomatoes, etc., I usually go with my Oxo two handle opener.

            1. re: Isolda
              liu RE: Isolda Mar 11, 2012 05:10 PM

              Thanks for posting, Isolda.

              Mostly, I use a can opener for one can, but I like tools that don't struggle...tools that have lots more to give than what I generally demand of them. So, your comment is extremely helpful.

      2. re: lynnlato
        rasputina RE: lynnlato Mar 12, 2012 11:17 AM

        I have the same one and really like it a lot.

      3. SanityRemoved RE: liu Mar 11, 2012 01:31 PM

        I don't know at this time but Swing-A-Way used to make great can openers prior to sending their manufacturing to China. The quality is no longer the same. The possibility exists that you may be able to find one in a store, the packaging will tell you if it is made in the USA or made in China.

        1 Reply
        1. re: SanityRemoved
          liu RE: SanityRemoved Mar 11, 2012 01:49 PM

          SanityRemoved, thanks for replying so quickly!

          We have a Swing-A-Way can opener that was made in the USA. It is old, but not so old because it has vinyl covered handles. I think the original ones were bare metal? However, the blade feels dull. I'm ready for a new one.

          It did serve us for many years, however. Long ago, we never had so many can opener options as we do today!

        2. k
          kagemusha49 RE: liu Mar 11, 2012 01:37 PM

          I haven't got one but you should check out the OXO good grips can openers that are out there. All the OXO products seem to have been very thoughtfully designed. I have an OXO corkscrew and I will never use another.

          3 Replies
          1. re: kagemusha49
            liu RE: kagemusha49 Mar 11, 2012 01:54 PM

            kagemusha49, there seem to be two opinions about the OXO products: love 'em or dislike them strongly.

            Personally, I find them a bit bulky for my hands. I prefer something with more precision. That said, however, I have not tried their can opener. I will do so before ruling them out.

            Thanks for your input.

            1. re: kagemusha49
              sueatmo RE: kagemusha49 Mar 11, 2012 06:16 PM

              I have one of these, and I think it is fine. The newer Swng A Ways are not nearly as good as the older ones. But the blades do get dull with use. My OXO works well with no fuss.

              1. re: kagemusha49
                Heatherb RE: kagemusha49 Mar 12, 2012 02:45 PM

                I have to second the OXO can opener. I've had mine for years and really love it. It's very effective.

              2. sunshine842 RE: liu Mar 11, 2012 01:39 PM

                I've had my Swing-a-Way forever, and it's still showing no signs of giving up the ghost.

                it doesn't hurt my hands, it doesn't balk on very large or very small cans, and it works every single time.

                3 Replies
                1. re: sunshine842
                  liu RE: sunshine842 Mar 11, 2012 01:57 PM

                  Thank you, sunshine842, for offering your suggestion. As I mentioned upstream, we have a Swing-A-Way that is old and not cutting like it used to. If I could replace it with a Swing-A-Way as good as it originally was, I would do that. But most of the reviews that I have read seem to indicate that today's Swing-A-Way is not the same product.

                  1. re: liu
                    greygarious RE: liu Apr 26, 2012 11:12 AM

                    I have the cabinet mount Swing-A-Way. It's probably 15-20 yrs old, the second one I've had since buying my house 35 yrs ago. It's dulled over the years but as long as it still cuts, and doesn't leave metal slivers in the food, what more do I need? I much prefer the mounted opener to hand-held. Less force needed, and no fumbling around to find it in a tool drawer/caddy.

                    1. re: greygarious
                      liu RE: greygarious Apr 26, 2012 11:21 AM

                      ...back then...things were so simple when we had but one choice!

                      I don't think I appreciated my Swing-A-Way until now, and now I can't seem to replace it with anything that works as well.

                2. Chemicalkinetics RE: liu Mar 11, 2012 01:47 PM

                  Oxo can openers work well for me.

                  12 Replies
                  1. re: Chemicalkinetics
                    liu RE: Chemicalkinetics Mar 11, 2012 02:01 PM

                    Chemicalkinetics, I have read a lot of your other posts and appreciate that you have responded here.

                    I am not a huge OXO fan as I find their products a little "gross" and bulky for my hands. Still, I will try one of their can openers in a store before I purchase anything online.

                    1. re: liu
                      kagemusha49 RE: liu Mar 11, 2012 03:51 PM

                      On the OXO bulkiness. I am 63 next month and had arm surgery last year. I could barely open wine with my rabbit corkscrew and finally it fell apart. The OXO performs spectacularly. I suspect they are designed with two markets in mind - 1) old farts like me who are starting to have ageing problems and 2) young farts who are clumsy and inexperienced

                      1. re: kagemusha49
                        liu RE: kagemusha49 Mar 11, 2012 04:06 PM

                        Hi, kagemusha49...I'm laughing at your post!

                        Since you are among several others who really like the OXO can opener, I will try it at Bed-Bath (they seem to have an extensive collection of OXO products) before I order anything online.


                        1. re: kagemusha49
                          iliria RE: kagemusha49 Mar 11, 2012 04:08 PM

                          OXO do 3 types of can openers. Is the one in this link the one you are talking about?


                          1. re: iliria
                            liu RE: iliria Mar 11, 2012 04:16 PM

                            Thanks, iliria! I am glad you posed this question. It will save me the confusion when I go looking and find several OXO openers on the shelves! There are SO many choices these days...times were simpler when a can opener referred to one specific item!
                            But I love all the gadget options! Surely, having so many choices makes it more fun when something breaks!

                          2. re: kagemusha49
                            kattyeyes RE: kagemusha49 Mar 11, 2012 06:19 PM

                            kagemusha, I'm 20 years behind you, but have very small wrists and had four hand surgeries before I was 30, so I think you missed one of OXO's markets--people who fell apart prematurely. ;) Love, love, love my OXO Good Grips can opener--it's a breeze to use. I clean it manually. And while we're talking about OXO, I completely dig my OXO peeler. It used to feel like such a chore peeling carrots or potatoes when I was a kiddo--not so with my OXO peeler--and it's fast-fast, too!

                            1. re: kattyeyes
                              liu RE: kattyeyes Mar 11, 2012 06:28 PM

                              WOW -- I can't believe the love for the OXO can opener!
                              I am definitely going to go to a store to check it out before I decide.

                              I know, I know -- this is such an insignificant purchase, but it's these little things in the kitchen that make the task either a breeze or a drag. I appreciate "good" tools!

                              1. re: liu
                                kattyeyes RE: liu Mar 11, 2012 06:32 PM

                                NP...and just in case you haven't read enough already, here is an old thread with the same inquiry! But it seems you have plenty to go on so far. ;) Happy shopping!

                                I appreciate good tools, too, BTW, so I understand completely. The right tools make a HUGE difference.


                                1. re: kattyeyes
                                  liu RE: kattyeyes Mar 11, 2012 08:02 PM

                                  Actually, so as not to get stones cast at me, I did check the previous can opener post. It seemed old enough to readdress this tool search. Still, thanks for the link and thanks for your input.

                                2. re: liu
                                  omotosando RE: liu Mar 11, 2012 09:38 PM

                                  I hate my OXO can opener. I find it too bulky for my hands. It's not so horrible that I would replace it, but I recently misplaced it and now am in the market for a new can opener and would not run out to buy another OXO.

                                  1. re: omotosando
                                    liu RE: omotosando Mar 11, 2012 10:00 PM

                                    Finally, omotosando, I hear from someone who feels about OXO the way I feel. I always feel that there is too much plastic and that their hand products are too round...pregnant!
                                    But, there are a lot of Hounds here that really like their can openers, so I have promised to give them a chance.

                                    So, omotosando, which can opener are you going to buy? Would you buy one online without trying it out or will you store shop it before the purchase?

                                    1. re: liu
                                      omotosando RE: liu Mar 11, 2012 10:25 PM

                                      There don't seem to be a lot of options for a well-made can opener.

                                      I'll probably go with the WMF Profi Plus Safety Can Opener, which is more money than the other WMF can opener mentioned on this thread, but doesn't have that awful plastic. http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B002...

                                      Apparently, it used to be made in Germany, but now is made in China. I would prefer to buy something not manufactured in China, but that seems impossible with can openers.

                        2. w
                          Wile_E_Coyote RE: liu Mar 11, 2012 06:05 PM

                          We have the german WMF can opener. Here's a link to Amazon:


                          I agree with all the great reviews. This is the best can opener I've ever used, and I reach for it over our electric opener.

                          5 Replies
                          1. re: Wile_E_Coyote
                            liu RE: Wile_E_Coyote Mar 11, 2012 06:18 PM

                            Wile_E_Coyote, thanks for the link. So many times a single company will make a variety of versions of the same product. Your link is very helpful!

                            I like that this can opener is dishwasher safe. I also noticed that the turning crank is "tough plastic." How long have you had your WMF opener? Do you think that a year or two in the dishwasher might weaken this plastic piece?

                            1. re: liu
                              Wile_E_Coyote RE: liu Mar 12, 2012 08:25 PM

                              We've had it about a year and it looks like new, but we rarely toss it in the dishwasher. We usually just rinse it off and wipe dry.

                              1. re: Wile_E_Coyote
                                liu RE: Wile_E_Coyote Mar 12, 2012 08:56 PM

                                Thanks for responding to my concerns, Wile_E_Coyote.
                                I would love to be able to toss the can opener in the dishwasher, but I suspect that for many openers -- especially the ones with plastic parts -- this is not advised.

                                1. re: liu
                                  RelishPDX RE: liu Mar 13, 2012 11:33 AM

                                  My Leifheit goes into the dishwasher all the time, perhaps once a month or so. I don't think that's harmed it in any way over its impressive 25-year service life, and it has both a plastic handle and crank.

                                  1. re: RelishPDX
                                    liu RE: RelishPDX Mar 13, 2012 12:02 PM

                                    25 years...that IS impressive!
                                    Thanks, RelishPDX. I prefer a can opener that can go into the dishwasher.

                          2. r
                            redbeanbun RE: liu Mar 11, 2012 06:36 PM

                            we have a weird rosle one legged safety can opener. it took some getting used to but i like that the cut edge doesn't cut me. it cuts right under the lip of the can lid and the whole lid pops off. we've only had it for a year but i can't imagine it wearing out any quicker than your typical manual can opener. turn the knob forward to open the can, and at the end, roll the knob backward a little to release. then i rinse it off and throw it back in the drawer.

                            2 Replies
                            1. re: redbeanbun
                              liu RE: redbeanbun Mar 11, 2012 08:06 PM

                              redbeanbun, I thank you for yet another option. Although I know the brand Rosle, I don't know anyone who has experience with their kitchen tools. Surely, with your recommendation in mind, I will consider this one.

                              1. re: redbeanbun
                                JackpineSavage RE: redbeanbun Apr 8, 2012 08:02 AM

                                I also like the Rosle safety can opener for 95% of my can-opening work. The opener basically de-crimps the lid from the body of the can, so there are no sharp edges. As for the other 5%, because of the way it removes the lid, it is difficult to drain a can of tuna for tuna salad, at least the way I was taught to do it -- cut all but a little of the lid away, and squeeze the liquid out.

                              2. g
                                GH1618 RE: liu Mar 11, 2012 08:20 PM

                                I have a Pyrex brand opener which works by breaking the seal instead of cutting through the lid. That's a nice feature often, but the downside is that there are some cans it won't open. My imported sardines, for example. And commercial-size cans. To compensate, I have kept my hand-held Swing-a-Way made in 1969. It looks bad, and it shows signs of wear, but it still opens everything. I don't know how long the new one will last, but I wouldn't bet on it making 40 years.

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: GH1618
                                  liu RE: GH1618 Mar 11, 2012 08:32 PM

                                  Pyrex makes can openers? I didn't know that and checked to see it on Amazon. I have been wondering about those openers that break the seal, and you have made some very good points. I thank you for the specifics about imported sardine cans and commercial-size cans.

                                  Those Swing-A-Way can openers of long ago get rave reviews! I will keep mine as a back-up, and only hope that I can find something to compare.

                                2. a
                                  AmiAmi RE: liu Mar 11, 2012 10:50 PM

                                  I like my Good Cook can opener. http://www.goodcook.com/default.aspx?... . I found it at my grocer for $12. No blade, separates the seam, smooth, very few moving parts. It has lasted longer than my old zyliss opener, or my oxo one. Doesn't touch the food. THE BEST>

                                  3 Replies
                                  1. re: AmiAmi
                                    liu RE: AmiAmi Mar 12, 2012 02:04 PM

                                    Hi, AmiAmi. This Good Cook brand is new to me, but Amazon does carry several different Good Cook models:


                                    Thank you for dropping one more brand into the mix!

                                    1. re: liu
                                      AmiAmi RE: liu Mar 12, 2012 03:05 PM

                                      Also I want to mention that there is no gunky blade to get dull. wipes clean with a damp cloth and has been in the dishwater and the dish washer with no hassle or rust/corrosion. And no dual handle, just one lightweight grip. Get one and look no further.

                                      1. re: AmiAmi
                                        liu RE: AmiAmi Mar 12, 2012 03:15 PM


                                  2. r
                                    RelishPDX RE: liu Mar 11, 2012 10:52 PM

                                    I'm in the same boat, in the market for a new can opener. I've been using the same Leifheit for so long, it says "Made in West Germany", so it must be near 25 years old by now. It's just now starting to not grip cans properly.

                                    I recall trying one of those can openers that cut the side of the can instead of the lid, but found it awkward to use. It was difficult to use the lid to strain liquids from the can, liquids often spilled over the edge while opening cans, and the lid was useless to squish water out of tuna cans. I finally gave up and gave it away.

                                    I'll probably replace it with this: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B002...

                                    Amazon has it on their 4-for-3 promotion, plus it qualifies for free shipping when your order is over $25. The review for another one of Leifheit's can openers says they've moved manufacturing to China, so I don't expect the new one to last as long as the current one I have, but who knows. For $15 plus the promos, I'm willing to take the risk.

                                    I'm thinking about buying the Leifheit egg slicer as well, since it has the same promotion at Amazon, and the one review on it says it's capable of mushroom slicing too, something I've broken two cheap egg slicers doing so far.

                                    N.B. I hope everyone tosses their can opener into the dishwasher every now and then. I read an article on restaurant inspections once that said the most germ-filled item in kitchens is often the can opener!

                                    1 Reply
                                    1. re: RelishPDX
                                      liu RE: RelishPDX Mar 12, 2012 02:11 PM

                                      A couple things you said struck me, RelishPDX. Most of my past can openers just stopped gripping, as you described. They would then ride off the track while I was opening the can and that was annoying! Perhaps some of this is due to a dulling blade...I don't know, but I don't want to think so much about my can opener!

                                      Also, you made a great point about cleaning the can opener. "Stuff" does build up unless they are thoroughly cleaned. Although I think that the dishwasher is tough on these kitchen gizmos, I want a product that I can clean in the dishwasher.

                                      I did not know about the Leifheit can opener, so I am glad to add it to my list.

                                    2. njmarshall55 RE: liu Mar 12, 2012 11:21 AM

                                      Not ONE mention of the old standby ...the P-38. My fave.

                                      6 Replies
                                      1. re: njmarshall55
                                        rasputina RE: njmarshall55 Mar 12, 2012 11:27 AM

                                        LOL we used to use the p-38 before we got the Kukn Rikon. It's now relegated back to the camping box.

                                        1. re: njmarshall55
                                          liu RE: njmarshall55 Mar 12, 2012 01:48 PM

                                          P-38...I had to look it up online. That's a "cool tool!" Does anyone still sell them?

                                          1. re: liu
                                            rasputina RE: liu Mar 12, 2012 02:50 PM

                                            every military surplus store

                                            1. re: rasputina
                                              INDIANRIVERFL RE: rasputina Mar 12, 2012 02:57 PM

                                              For the larger version used by cooks to open B rations, look for a P-39. My mess sargeant gave me one to mollify me after I looked into his 5 conexs.

                                              1. re: rasputina
                                                liu RE: rasputina Mar 12, 2012 03:01 PM

                                                I'm drawn to it as a "cool tool"...but I don't know why I would want one for my kitchen.
                                                Still, you amaze me for posting about this!

                                                1. re: liu
                                                  njmarshall55 RE: liu Mar 12, 2012 03:13 PM

                                                  Merely as a novelty in this late stage of my life. But there WAS a time when it made life a whole lot easier in the field.

                                          2. liu RE: liu Mar 12, 2012 01:58 PM

                                            This reply is addressed to all those on this post who recommended the OXO can opener. Although I mentioned that I don't care for most of the OXO products because they feel bulky to me, I did promise to go and check out their can opener.

                                            Bed, Bath & Beyond features a lot of their products. As iliri pointed out on this post, OXO makes at least three different can openers and Bed, Bath & Beyond has all three. The only one that felt good to me was their Smooth Edge Opener:


                                            I will keep this one on my list for consideration. Thanks to all of you who posted their love for these OXO can openers.

                                            1. rosetown RE: liu Mar 12, 2012 02:42 PM

                                              I have a Presidents Choice manual - 8.99 in Superstore (Loblaws Canada) solid stainless steel - weighs just over 350 grams. It's a top cutter as opposed to an edge cutter. It works beautifully - I've included photos in case you can't find an identical product, but maybe one with a similar design.

                                              Does the handle turn smoothly?
                                              - yes
                                              Does the blade cut the lid itself or does it separate the lid from the can at the seam?
                                              - it cuts from the top - the rim remains
                                              Does the can opener touch the food inside?
                                              - not that I notice
                                              Can the can opener be cleaned in the dishwasher or does it have to be hand-washed?
                                              - you risk rust in diswasher - lots of moving parts - just rinse when necessary
                                              Does the can opener lift the cut lid out of the can?
                                              - no
                                              How durable is the cutting blade?
                                              - it's a rotating cutting wheel - sharp and durable
                                              Does the blade shred the metal lid and leave little bits of metal in the food?
                                              - no
                                              Is the cut lid sharp? Does the can opener leave sharp edges on the cut can?
                                              - fairly smooth - still cut edges beg using caution

                                              3 photos
                                              - photo 1 shows the gearing, cutting edge - canted inwards, and cogged gripping edge - to grip the rim - because it's geared both the gripping edge and the cutting edge rotate.

                                              10 Replies
                                              1. re: rosetown
                                                liu RE: rosetown Mar 12, 2012 02:57 PM

                                                What a comprehensive report, rosetown! I appreciate your photos and all your details.

                                                It is astounding to me that there are so many brands of can openers; it is such a simple tool, yet each brand manages to make this item its own.

                                                President's Choice is not a brand I am familiar with and I do not find it available on Amazon USA, so this might be one that is difficult to secure here in the States. However, I remain in awe of your thorough post; you answered all of my questions...thanks!

                                                1. re: liu
                                                  kagemusha49 RE: liu Mar 12, 2012 03:32 PM

                                                  Dontcha have to go to Albertsons to get one? It's a supermarket private label.

                                                  1. re: kagemusha49
                                                    liu RE: kagemusha49 Mar 12, 2012 04:13 PM

                                                    OK...surely I can check Albertson's. Thanks!

                                                    1. re: liu
                                                      omotosando RE: liu Mar 12, 2012 09:26 PM

                                                      I just came back from Albertsons. There was no President's Choice can opener. Albertsons only had a brand called Kitchenmate. Since with Albertsons card, the can opener was only $6.51, I picked one up.

                                                      I haven't actually opened a can with it yet, but it feels rather heavy in the hand and has the usual cheap bulky plastic crank. However, I figured for $6.51, it would do until either my lost OXO showed up or I decided to spring for the expensive WMF Profi Plus Safety Can Opener, which seems to be the least objectionable of a lot of bad options.

                                                      1. re: omotosando
                                                        liu RE: omotosando Mar 12, 2012 10:07 PM

                                                        omotosando -- Oh, I'm so glad you went to check the Albertson's can opener; you saved me an errand!
                                                        Please, please report back when you use the Kitchenmate one...wouldn't you like a can of soup now? A can of garbanzos? I'm waiting... !!!

                                                        1. re: liu
                                                          omotosando RE: liu Mar 13, 2012 11:17 AM

                                                          Okay, so I opened a can of tuna this morning. It did the job -- i.e., it opened the can. I can't say I'm in love with it, but I'm not sure it is any worse than my misplaced OXO. I hate the ugly plastic crank. But for less than $7, it will do in the short term. I'll probably order the WMF Profi Plus Safety Can Opener next time I place an Amazon order.

                                                          1. re: omotosando
                                                            liu RE: omotosando Mar 13, 2012 12:08 PM

                                                            Tuna...a true Hound would have told us what kind!!!! (just kidding, omotosando)

                                                            I am not hearing enough enthusiasm to make my move on this Albertson's can opener.

                                                            So, I will follow this thread for awhile longer and then decide between the Kuhn Rikon, the OXO smooth edge, the WMF, the Good Cook and the Leifheit. I think those are my leading contenders at this moment.

                                                        2. re: omotosando
                                                          kagemusha49 RE: omotosando Mar 13, 2012 02:20 PM

                                                          I'm sorry if I sent you to the wrong supermarket. I know for a fact that president's choice is a supermarket private label. I thought it waas Albertsons but maybe it's publix?

                                                    2. re: liu
                                                      rosetown RE: liu Mar 13, 2012 10:49 AM

                                                      One reason that I posted photos it is a very common design and there are many products on the market that follow this design principle. However some are more heavy duty than others.

                                                      1st photo right to left:
                                                      o - crank
                                                      o - shaft with spring
                                                      o - 2 gears - 1 canted and attached to cutting wheel
                                                      o - notched rotating gripping wheel
                                                      o - canted rotating cutting wheel

                                                      1. re: rosetown
                                                        liu RE: rosetown Mar 13, 2012 11:14 AM

                                                        rosetown, I am impressed at the way you have approached this challenge! Your attention to detail is extraordinary. That seems like a fine can opener!

                                                        Thanks for deconstructing your can opener, but I wonder if this exact product is available here in the States.

                                                        omotosando, who posted yesterday, did go to Albertson's market for this product. I am waiting to hear from him to see if what he purchased is similar to your Presidents Choice.

                                                  2. a
                                                    AmiAmi RE: liu Mar 13, 2012 03:12 PM

                                                    Ok Liu, you have the scoop on can openers. Are you going to try them all? Which one did you get?

                                                    1 Reply
                                                    1. re: AmiAmi
                                                      liu RE: AmiAmi Mar 13, 2012 03:32 PM

                                                      Hi, AmiAmi!
                                                      I am beginning to think that there is an inverse correlation that is applicable here: the smaller the purchase, the more time contemplating the pieces!

                                                      As I posted upstream, I have about 5 on my list for consideration: Kuhn Rikon, OXO Smooth Edge, WMF Profi Plus Safety Stainless, Good Cook Safe Cut and Leifheit 03051 Proline.

                                                      Of course, I would love a side-by-side comparison, but perhaps that would be over-the-top for a can opener purchase!!!

                                                      Are there any others that I should add to my list?

                                                    2. f
                                                      flavorjam RE: liu Mar 13, 2012 04:28 PM

                                                      You’ve really got me thinking about this. I have an old Swing Away that I don’t even know where it came from. (Actually never knew what brand it was til I just looked it up. LOL) I like its durability and feel but it’s a pain to clean (manual) and the lids always drop into the can (I always wash lids before opening. You never what dirt and critters have been on the tops.) But for kitchen gadgets I have had great results with Lehman’s Hardware in Kidron, Ohio. They carry many Amish and old-fashioned items that you can’t find anywhere else. Here’s a link I found for can openers. http://www.lehmans.com/store/Kitchen_... I may have to order one myself.

                                                      7 Replies
                                                      1. re: flavorjam
                                                        liu RE: flavorjam Mar 13, 2012 05:24 PM

                                                        flavorjam, those are interesting can openers. I see that the second one in the photo on the lower right is a Kuhn Rikon, but I don't see a brand name on the main one in the link you sent. It looks similar to the Zyliss that I just had that broke, but it looks a little different, too. (Our Zyliss had a lock on top which was sometimes a little bit of a hassle. The one on the Lehman's site looks like it also might have a lock on top.)

                                                        Your idea is a good one; I love local hardware stores.

                                                        1. re: liu
                                                          petek RE: liu Apr 8, 2012 09:39 AM

                                                          I just picked this up.Works like a charm.


                                                          1. re: petek
                                                            liu RE: petek Apr 8, 2012 11:59 AM

                                                            Hi, petek!

                                                            I am the original poster and I still have not purchased a can opener! Truly, nothing has wow'd me yet.

                                                            This one looks good. Did you purchase it from this site? I think I found the same one on Amazon:


                                                            What do you like about it? Does it cut the can or just the lid? (I think I prefer that it cut just the lid.)

                                                            1. re: liu
                                                              petek RE: liu Apr 8, 2012 12:17 PM

                                                              Hey liu.
                                                              I didn't purchase it from this site(they were sold out at the time)so I had to buy from a local big box store(kitchen stuff plus) for a slightly higher price :(.
                                                              It's much more comfortable and cleaner to use,just cuts the lid,so much better than the p.o.c opener I was using before.
                                                              Yup,it's the same one as sold on Amazon..

                                                              1. re: petek
                                                                liu RE: petek Apr 8, 2012 12:27 PM

                                                                Thanks, petek! I can hear your enthusiasm...this just might be the one I will try!

                                                                I'll report back as soon as I settle on something. I am using an old Swing-A-Way that was made in the USA; it was great and still works. However, the blade is a little dull and it frequently slips off the can. I know I am due a new one...

                                                                1. re: liu
                                                                  petek RE: liu Apr 8, 2012 12:32 PM

                                                                  No problem liu.

                                                                  I had the same problem with the old can opener.Always slipping and getting gunked up with crud...,gross :D.I like the fact that it clamps down on the top of the can,not the side.

                                                                  Hope you enjoy it!

                                                                  P.S..I get just as excited over a $10. can opener as I do with a $300.Japanese knife! :)

                                                                  Anything that makes my life easier is a good thing.

                                                                  1. re: petek
                                                                    liu RE: petek Apr 8, 2012 01:12 PM

                                                                    "I get just as excited over a $10. can opener as I do with a $300.Japanese knife! :)"

                                                                    I get it! I feel exactly the same way, petek!

                                                                    Thank you for all your very useful information.

                                                      2. jmcarthur8 RE: liu Apr 8, 2012 01:38 PM

                                                        I've always used Swing-Away, and love mine. Last year, at TJ Maxx, they had a left handed Kuhn-Rikon, which I bought because my son is left handed, and so am I. I like it, he doesn't, because he's 6'1"( which makes his hands and fingers long). It's too small for him to use comfortably.

                                                        Now it seems to have gotten dull already, and if there is any flaw in the edge of the can at all, it just won't cut it. (pun intended)
                                                        I'm glad I kept my Swing-Away. It's a little dull with age (aren't we all?!), but it works even on dented cans.
                                                        I have seen some KitchenAid can openers on closeout shelves, and they look nice, but I don't know if I will like them at all. Anybody have an opinion on those?

                                                        1 Reply
                                                        1. re: jmcarthur8
                                                          liu RE: jmcarthur8 Apr 8, 2012 02:18 PM

                                                          "I'm glad I kept my Swing-Away. It's a little dull with age (aren't we all?!)"

                                                          Very funny, jmcarthur8!

                                                          Yes, those Swing-A-Way openers from so long ago are still great, even if they aren't as good as when we bought them. I don't know why, but I, too, tossed my old one into the back of the drawer and attempted to replace it. I bought a Zyliss, but it died. The old Swing-A-Way still does the job okay while I am looking for another.

                                                        2. liu RE: liu Apr 22, 2012 09:10 PM

                                                          After several weeks of searching and researching and fretting, we finally broke down today at Bed, Bath & Beyond and purchased the Oxo Steel Can Opener. I have not loved any Oxo products in the past and I did not plan to purchase an "ordinary" can opener. Truly, I wanted something fine and elite in its class! Why, I don't know, but I like tools that work beyond all expectations!

                                                          Oxo has at least three can openers at Bed, Bath & Beyond. This particular steel can opener was heavier than the others. With the discount coupon, it was just less than $14.00. At that moment I realized that I was spending way too much time making this decision!

                                                          I have not yet tried it, but I will report back as soon as I have had some time to check it out.

                                                          If anyone else has this same Oxo steel can opener, please let me know what you think.


                                                          My sincerest thanks to everyone who contributed their preferences and thoughts to this post! I found every response interesting and helpful.

                                                          8 Replies
                                                          1. re: liu
                                                            liu RE: liu Apr 25, 2012 07:40 PM

                                                            I have had a chance to try this Oxo steel can opener a couple of times...well, it's nothing special and therefore disappointing. It works, but it's not very smooth. It feels no different from any other can opener that I have used over the years.

                                                            I continue my search!

                                                            1. re: liu
                                                              AmiAmi RE: liu Apr 25, 2012 08:48 PM

                                                              Liu, Get the Good Cook safe cut can opener. I said before, look no further. So simple, elegant, inexpensive. It is a single handle no cut, no blade, lid unsealer-lifter. Just go get it and review it. You have an audience.

                                                              1. re: AmiAmi
                                                                liu RE: AmiAmi Apr 26, 2012 08:02 AM

                                                                Hello, AmiAmi. I do hope you're in sales; you are so convincing. I love your spirit!

                                                                There are two deal breakers for me with this Good Cook safe cut can opener that you have recommended. First, I have played with the single handle openers and I feel like an old dog trying to learn a new trick. Perhaps my being a Southpaw doesn't help my coordination!
                                                                The second deal breaker with this particular can opener is that I have reservations about the type of cutter it is. With these lid/side cutters, I wonder if they perform as well with cans that are not perfectly round...I refer specifically to a can of sardines.

                                                                1. re: liu
                                                                  AmiAmi RE: liu Apr 26, 2012 10:53 AM

                                                                  Ah, yes. I too am south paw. The opener works on square cans. The deal maker is that the lid lifter style is a safe cut. There is no gunked up germy blade and very few moving parts. Try it. You said you were disappointed with the OXO, so the search is on. Everyone wants to know what you think is the best can opener.

                                                                  1. re: AmiAmi
                                                                    liu RE: AmiAmi Apr 26, 2012 11:10 AM

                                                                    Thanks for the link, AmiAmi!

                                                                    As I'm sure you saw, the Amazon reviews are mixed on the longevity of this tool. Other owners, like you, are quite satisfied.

                                                                    Yes, you have stirred my interest in this particular can opener. I will be thinking about it over the next few weeks while I continue to shop. Thanks!

                                                                    1. re: liu
                                                                      AmiAmi RE: liu Apr 26, 2012 09:22 PM

                                                                      Liu, 20 excellent reviews out of 25...That's pretty good, you must admit. Also I hear that you can use it to take the top off an aluminum pop can! BUT~ the search is on..How about this one, with a bottle opener, in white, to not be lost in the deep recesses of kitchen drawers?
                                                                      OR this with a crank to it? The Trudeau Stress-less
                                                                      http://www.amazon.com/Trudeau-Stress-... I'm gonna hafta try this one.

                                                                      1. re: liu
                                                                        sunshine842 RE: liu Apr 26, 2012 10:44 PM

                                                                        Liu, I think you're thinking too hard on this one.

                                                                        The advent of the Internet means that everyone can share their every opinion about everything...this is good, because there are reviews to consider.

                                                                        This is also bad, because for every good review, you can find a bad review not very far behind.

                                                                        You are never, ever going to find a can opener that has complete agreement that it is the most fabulous can opener ever found (well, there's that guy on TV, but you know....)

                                                                        Can openers are not major investments -- go buy one, use it, and if you hate it, give it to Goodwill and go get another one.

                                                                        But you're just as likely to find one you really, really like.

                                                                        Then you'll have the free time to think about great food and how you'll enjoy those meals with your loved ones.

                                                                        1. re: sunshine842
                                                                          liu RE: sunshine842 Apr 27, 2012 06:24 AM

                                                                          Well said, sunshine842!

                                                                          A lot of life's pleasures -- for me -- are in the details.
                                                                          This search is not about the can opener as much as it is about finding a good tool.

                                                            Show Hidden Posts