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How to Cut Memory Foam without Messing Up the Whole Process

April 12, 2017 by Maria

A high quality material used in the preparation of mattresses, best memory foam mattress toppers, and pillows, memory foam is essentially a polyurethane material that comprises of extra chemicals to enhance the viscosity and density. Memory foam tends to soften up when brought in close contact with the heat of the body. As a result it wraps around a warm body and gives it a greater degree of comfort. Upon removal of weight, it recovers to the original shape with the recovery process being a very quick one. This is one of the main reasons why memory foam is highly rated as a bedding material. However, when it comes to cutting or shaping memory foam it can be a very challenging process. With the right kind of equipment your disposal, you can overcome this challenge and go about cutting memory foam down to the required size.

Getting a clean edge is where you need to start

One of the most common issues faced when it comes to cutting memory foam is that it does not give you a clean edge. Being too aggressive with the right tool or starting out with the wrong tool altogether contributes towards the foam becoming rough and jagged along the edges. You should use the right tool with care to ensure a smooth and clean cut for your memory foam.

Carving knife

A carving knife comes with a serrated blade compared to those knives that have a smooth blade on them. There are tiny points on these serrated tips which are crucial to providing a straight, clean cut on the memory foam. With the help of gentle, short back and forth motions you can saw through the foam. It is important to ensure that the foam is not compressed.

Electric knife

An electric knife that is commonly available is another option. This too comes with a serrated blade similar to what you get in a carving knife. This is especially useful if you are cutting foam with the help of a template. The edge could be your guide as you slide the knife along the template to get the cut.

Utility knife

Craft knives or utility knives are surgically sharp and this makes them a good choice for cutting memory foam. The secret to using this equipment lies in making a number of easy passes over the memory foam material. Rather than sawing through the foam – something you would usually do while using a serrated blade – start by making a shallow cut-line before eventually deepening it till you finally manage to cut through the foam.

Heavy-duty scissors

You can make use of heavy-duty scissors for cutting thinner quality memory foam. Short chops are helpful in getting the right kind of cut especially when you are using the part of the blades that meet near the handles.

Additional tools to put to use

Apart from the usual knives and cutters, there are a number of other tools that you can use for cutting and shaping memory foam – marking pens, straightedge, Drywall square. All of these will help you in getting lines to give an accurate cut to your memory foam.

Drywall square

These are ideal for cutting long and straight pieces of foam. Take the necessary measurements and place the implement on the foam to square it up. Keep your knees on top so that the square remains steady. The side of the square will act as your guide with a utility knife running along the edge to give you a nice, clean cut.

An alternative to a conventional Drywall square would be a chunk of plywood with straight edges. You can use it in a manner similar to that of a Drywall square set.

Secure it down if necessary

Large pieces of memory foam have sufficient magnitude of friction that helps in keeping the object in place when you are cutting it. When dealing with smaller pieces, it is recommended that you have some heavy object placed along the edge or clamp it down if necessary. This will prevent your cut from going awry.

Some advice with the cutting

It is important that the memory foam is kept on a hard surface with the cutting edges hanging out of the surface. Hold it in place with one hand and have your cutter in the other to cut the foam along the required lines and surfaces.

Also if you are using an electric knife ensure that your fingers or the electrical cord is kept away from the cutting blade. You also need to be in a comfortable position before starting to use a cutter for cutting memory foam. Last but not the least you need to be cautious with everything while cutting the memory foam because all of it can prove to be very lethal.

Our 6 Easy Steps For Cutting Up Your Mattress

Too many mattresses are often improperly disposed of or are not always recycled, which can be a problem as the landfills grow larger each year. If you’re looking into disposing of your mattress, you need toknow how to cut up a mattress.

Naturally, recycling regulations vary from state to state, with places like California and Rhode Island requiring by law that residents recycle their beds. You should check the laws for your state and make sure you’re doing what is in accordance with their regulations.

It can seem daunting at first to break yours down, but it’s not as hard as some people may think.

6 Steps to Breaking Down Your Mattress

Gathering The Proper Tools

First off, you’re going to need the right set of equipment to handle this task. Normally, you should be able to find most of these supplies at your local hardware store, as they’re typically common.

You’ll need a saw, a bolt cutter or wire clippers, boxes to store any loose parts you get from the process, eyewear to protect your eyes, some durable gloves, preferably cut-resistant ones, a good pair of pliers, a utility knife and a box cutter. Make sure that you get all of these, as you don’t want to make multiple trips back to the store.

Step 1: Remove the Cord from the Edges

For this part, use your utility knife to get rid of the piping thread. Follow the thread to its end, then you tug until it comes loose from the bedding. Do this for every side until it is done.

You’ can recycle the thread for other uses or donate it, whichever is most convenient for you. It could be beneficial to keep if you think it can be repurposed.

Step 2: Cut off the Side Panels

Removing the side panels is an important step that could prove to be rather difficult. If you are new to this process, you might want to be extra careful, as you could end up hurting yourself. With that being said, remove the sides with your hands once the material has been cut/ripped enough to remove the binding cords and then take off the sides themselves.

Step 3: Remove the Top and Bottom Layers

The next step is simple but necessary, and it shouldn’t take you too long. When you’re removing the top and bottom layers, it’s important to keep an eye out for any staples. These are used to keep the fabric on the outer layer bound and secure.

Take off the fabric until you see foam or cotton padding. Once this is achieved, gently slip off the top layer until it’s completely off.

Step 4: Sort the Internal Layers and Fabric

The next step requires some precaution. Get your gloves ready, because it could get a bit messy. You should collect all of the inner filling and fabric up and ready it for either recycling or reusing.

You should store the filling and so on somewhere dry, preferably in a bag, until you figure out what you’re going to do with it. Figure out what can be recycled and how the material could be potentially reused.

Step 5: Carefully Cut the Metal Springs

Safety should be a priority for this next step. There’s a chance for injury, as the metal springs may be quite sharp. You may want to wear gloves and have your wire cutters ready.

Once the fabric is removed, you should only have springs left. You’re then going to need to slice up all of the springs into smaller parts. These can be reused for a variety of purposes if you don’t want to just throw them out.

Frequently Asked Questions

What if there is a fiberglass fire barrier

This is important to consider when you’re cutting up your mattress, as you could potentially get fiberglass everywhere if you’re not too careful. Be sure to carefully dispose or recycle the material after removing it. If you’re not entirely sure how to handle it, you could consult with a local recycling center as to what to do.

Conclusion

Recycling a bed can be of great use to both you and the environment, as you’re getting rid of old bedding you no longer want, while potentially giving new life to old things. It can be intimidating when you’re starting out but with a few tips, you should be able to handle it perfectly.

Hopefully, with this guide, you’ll know exactly what to do and how to do it. If you use the right tools and take the proper precautions you should do just fine. Take care not to hurt yourself and all the steps should go according to plan.

More Reading:

Author: Sleep Advisor

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Sleep research is changing all the time, and we are 100% dedicated to keeping up with breakthroughs and innovations. You live better if you sleep better. Whatever has brought you here, we wish you luck on your journey towards better rest.

How To Cut A Mattress In Half

Mattresses are a common household item and can be costly depending on the type purchased. Once used most people dispose of it rather than recycle the mattress. With a little effort, you can convert them into other useful items in the house. For example, the most common types such as viscoelastic memory foam can be cut to smaller pieces and the resulting cushions used as smaller beds for the kids, car seats and used in the kernels as sleeping mats for the dogs. Not only is it an idea to dissect to recycle into other goods, but can also help in the disposal process in order to perhaps fit into your vehicle.

Mattresses range in size and density depending on their composition. From pocket spring to organic latex mattresses the ease of cutting through it depends on its structure. For example, an innerspring is relatively harder to cut through, but given the right tools and procedure, you can easily cut them into half too. The other foam mattresses are made of relatively soft and easy material to cut through.

For the purpose of this exercise, we decided to split ours into two, not to recycle or dispose of, but simply to reduce it in size and gain two from one. Below is the description of how we did it; your type might be a little different from the one whose description is given below but the steps followed should be relatively similar. The one cut into half below is an innerspring; therefore it is essential to know your mattress type before trying to cut it in half. Knowing that will help you identify the tools required and amount of labor needed.

Table of Contents

Step By Step Instructions

Tools Needed

  • A pair of scissors
  • A pair of pliers
  • A sewing machine or needle
  • Thimble
  • Dremel tool with a fiberglass reinforced cutting wheel
  • Strong sewing thread
  • A lot of straight pins
  • Wax
  • Staple gun
  • Sharp scalpel
  • Tape measure

Step 1: Cut Through The Outer Covering

With the help of the sharp scalpel make an incision on the softer outer covering and cut the cover right down the center of the mattress using the pair of scissors to expose the inner layer of springs. Using the tape measure, measure the midpoint and mark the springs to be cut through using the sharp scalpel. Make the marks conspicuous enough.

Step 2: Cut Through Springs

Use the Dremel tool to cut down the line of springs marked earlier with the scalpel. Be careful when doing this in order to avoid injury to the finger. Hold the tool steady because any jerky movement will break the wheel. Use the pliers to clip off any hard remnants of the spring that the Dremel can’t cut off.

Step 3: Fold Sharp Spring Ends

Using the pair of pliers carefully fold the sharp protruding ends of the metallic springs to form a new section of the cut mattress. The springs should be folded inwards to avoid injury when someone sits on it. Using a piece of cloth or rope, tie the springs of the new section together – this is for support.

Step 4: Close Up The Ends

Close the new ends of the mattress using the spare cover. You can either buy a new cover or use an old one depending on availability. Using the sewing needle cover the mattress end. Use the thimble while doing this to avoid injury to your finger. Use the wax to soften the thread and as a lubricant to make the sewing easy. Staple thoroughly the ends and trim the excess cover. Repeat the procedure to the other half of the mattress. You should now have two halves of the original mattress.

How to Cut Memory Foam without Messing Up the Whole Process

April 12, 2017 by Maria

A high quality material used in the preparation of mattresses, best memory foam mattress toppers, and pillows, memory foam is essentially a polyurethane material that comprises of extra chemicals to enhance the viscosity and density. Memory foam tends to soften up when brought in close contact with the heat of the body. As a result it wraps around a warm body and gives it a greater degree of comfort. Upon removal of weight, it recovers to the original shape with the recovery process being a very quick one. This is one of the main reasons why memory foam is highly rated as a bedding material. However, when it comes to cutting or shaping memory foam it can be a very challenging process. With the right kind of equipment your disposal, you can overcome this challenge and go about cutting memory foam down to the required size.

Getting a clean edge is where you need to start

One of the most common issues faced when it comes to cutting memory foam is that it does not give you a clean edge. Being too aggressive with the right tool or starting out with the wrong tool altogether contributes towards the foam becoming rough and jagged along the edges. You should use the right tool with care to ensure a smooth and clean cut for your memory foam.

Carving knife

A carving knife comes with a serrated blade compared to those knives that have a smooth blade on them. There are tiny points on these serrated tips which are crucial to providing a straight, clean cut on the memory foam. With the help of gentle, short back and forth motions you can saw through the foam. It is important to ensure that the foam is not compressed.

Electric knife

An electric knife that is commonly available is another option. This too comes with a serrated blade similar to what you get in a carving knife. This is especially useful if you are cutting foam with the help of a template. The edge could be your guide as you slide the knife along the template to get the cut.

Utility knife

Craft knives or utility knives are surgically sharp and this makes them a good choice for cutting memory foam. The secret to using this equipment lies in making a number of easy passes over the memory foam material. Rather than sawing through the foam – something you would usually do while using a serrated blade – start by making a shallow cut-line before eventually deepening it till you finally manage to cut through the foam.

Heavy-duty scissors

You can make use of heavy-duty scissors for cutting thinner quality memory foam. Short chops are helpful in getting the right kind of cut especially when you are using the part of the blades that meet near the handles.

Additional tools to put to use

Apart from the usual knives and cutters, there are a number of other tools that you can use for cutting and shaping memory foam – marking pens, straightedge, Drywall square. All of these will help you in getting lines to give an accurate cut to your memory foam.

Drywall square

These are ideal for cutting long and straight pieces of foam. Take the necessary measurements and place the implement on the foam to square it up. Keep your knees on top so that the square remains steady. The side of the square will act as your guide with a utility knife running along the edge to give you a nice, clean cut.

An alternative to a conventional Drywall square would be a chunk of plywood with straight edges. You can use it in a manner similar to that of a Drywall square set.

Secure it down if necessary

Large pieces of memory foam have sufficient magnitude of friction that helps in keeping the object in place when you are cutting it. When dealing with smaller pieces, it is recommended that you have some heavy object placed along the edge or clamp it down if necessary. This will prevent your cut from going awry.

Some advice with the cutting

It is important that the memory foam is kept on a hard surface with the cutting edges hanging out of the surface. Hold it in place with one hand and have your cutter in the other to cut the foam along the required lines and surfaces.

Also if you are using an electric knife ensure that your fingers or the electrical cord is kept away from the cutting blade. You also need to be in a comfortable position before starting to use a cutter for cutting memory foam. Last but not the least you need to be cautious with everything while cutting the memory foam because all of it can prove to be very lethal.

How to Cut Memory Foam

Updated: July 26, 2019 | References

This article was co-authored by our trained team of editors and researchers who validated it for accuracy and comprehensiveness. Together, they cited information from 9 references.

wikiHow’s Content Management Team carefully monitors the work from our editorial staff to ensure that each article meets our high quality standards. Learn more.

Memory foam is a common material used for mattresses and pillows since it’s comfortable and it conforms to your body. If you have a piece of memory foam that’s too large, you can easily cut it at home with an electric carving knife. Be sure to double check your measurements before you make your cut so you don’t make a mistake. When you’re finished, you’ll have a piece of memory foam that’s the perfect size!

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\u00a9 2020 wikiHow, Inc. All rights reserved. wikiHow, Inc. is the copyright holder of this image under U.S. and international copyright laws. This image isnot licensed under the Creative Commons license applied to text content and some other images posted to the wikiHow website. This image may not be used by other entities without the express written consent of wikiHow, Inc.
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\u00a9 2020 wikiHow, Inc. All rights reserved. wikiHow, Inc. is the copyright holder of this image under U.S. and international copyright laws. This image isnot licensed under the Creative Commons license applied to text content and some other images posted to the wikiHow website. This image may not be used by other entities without the express written consent of wikiHow, Inc.
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Warning:Be careful not to compress the memory foam while you’re taking your measurements, or else they may not be accurate.

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