A can opener is an instrument designed for opening metal tins. It can also be called a tin opener. Steel cans were used to keep food in 1771 in the Netherlands safely, but effective can openers were first invented in 1855 in England. Most openers produced in the early years were different designs of a knife, though the 1855 model is still being manufactured.
The days can opener, which has a serrated revolving edge that rotates around the tin’s brim to pierce and remove the lid, was first developed in 1870. This rotating wheel tin opener has been embraced as one of the highly used tin opener designs. This article focuses on how to use a can opener.
Using a tin opener
Tin or can openers are essential kitchen requirements. They are not technical to use, but you need to learn a few things for an effective and efficient application. Apply the handheld tin opener by unfolding the arm, locating the sharp piercing end, and then revolve the handle to chop off the tin top. For the Swiss army knife opener, just spread out the razor and cut along the rim of the can to remove the lid. Always be careful not to cause unnecessary injuries to yourself when using can openers.
Ways of using a handheld tin opener
Unfold the tin opener’s arms- for the sharp end of the opener to be fitted along the rim of the can, its arms must be opened. Hold one of the tin opener’s arms with both hands and smoothly separate the arms from each other. When they are unfolded, they will again lock up without any force. Always take note of the following;
- The tin opener’s arms should be separated when fixing the opener to the can and not while the tin opener is already being applied.
- It is recommended that when removing the lid, you place the tin on a leveled surface or grasp it in the air.
Put the sharp end of the tin opener on the rim of the lid and the can- ensure that the can opener’s arms are in the unfolded posture as you orient the sharp piercing end. The sharp edge should be placed on the tin’s brim, and the keen revolving wheel resting on the cans grid that surrounds the can top. Ensure that the revolving grip is situated outside of the container to facilitate effective control. Take note of the following;
- The can opener is designed to have the sharp cutting end together with a turning handle and a jagged wheel that quickly cuts the lid as it moves along the can’s grid.
- The jagged wheel’s role is to grasp the can lid, enabling the tin opener to be firm and compact as the sharp cutting end pierce the can lid.
Piercing the lid of the can- as you push the arms of the can opener towards each other, the cutting edge easily cuts through the cover. The sharp end penetrates through the lid leading to a lot of pressure coming out of the tin. Hear some hissing sound as the penetration occurs.
- To push the can opener’s arms towards each other, you can use your two hands if you feel many difficulties using one hand.
Turn in the tin opener handle to revolve the cutting end as it cuts the lid- use one of your hands to grasp the arms of the tin opener and the other to turn its handle clockwise. This action will enable the jagged wheel to run along the can’s grid and cause the sharp cutting edge to pierce the lid. Ensure that the machine cuts the lid around until the lid is about to disconnect from the can. 1.2 cm of the lid should stand attached to the can.
You can also consider cutting off the lid
- Ensure that you apply sufficient force while twisting the handle, little pressure may make the can opener cease cutting the lid, or it will puncture the surface slowly.
- When the tin opener is not functioning correctly, please remove it from the can and fix it and start cutting again from where you stopped.
Lift the lid from the can and pull it out, unfold the can opener’s arms and keep it away from the can. Use the knife to carefully lift the lid from the tin and view the contents.
- Be careful not to cause cut injuries to your hands by carelessly touching the violent edge of the tin. You can hold the can from its flat bottom base but don’t hold its sharp sides.
- In case the lid has sunken inside, use a knife to remove it from the outside keenly.
Using a Swiss army knife
Open out the tin opener blade from the knife- the Swiss army knife has two edges; an extended linear edge with a curvy tip and the other lengthy edge has a curved hook situated at the edge’s center. Note that;
- In some cases, the tin opener blade can act as a screwdriver.
- Some can opener blades can be applied as bottle top opener. For this purpose, the can opener is designed with a small notch along the long end.
Pierce the brim of the tin with the tip of the Swiss Army knife- grasp the can tightly with your off-hand. Hold the sharp end of the Swiss army knife against the tin’s top margin and press the knife downwards firmly. Pierce through the can keenly and disconnect the lid from the can. Note that;
- It is vital to grasp the tin firmly so that the contents don’t pour out.
Cut through the lip of the tin clockwise- always use your active hand to hold the can opener blade and apply adequate force as you cut through the can. You can cut around until the lid is completely disconnected from the can, or a small part of the lid may remain attached.
- Note that you can cut through the lid anticlockwise when using a can opener blade that is also a bottle opener.
As mentioned above can openers are basic kitchen necessities. Note that apart from the handheld can opener and Swiss Army knife, we also have another tin opener known as an electronic can opener. The main purpose of an electronic can opener is to make work easier and more effective. Always handle these machines carefully to prevent accidents.