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Review: We R Memory Keepers Crop-A-Dile Big Bite

It was a cold winter’s day, and my hands had taken a real beating when I walked into the craft store. I was there for some more canvas and cardstock, but I had to pause at a display of We R Memory Keepers Crop-a-dile products. Covered in craft knife slices and jabs from paper piercing tools, and with every single finger either protected with a band-aid or bearing a wound farther along in healing, I had a moment of total madness – or utter clarity, depending on how you look at it.

Without a second thought, I grabbed the Crop-a-Dile Big Bite that was on sale and threw it in my cart.

It took a pre-CHA crazy week of intense creative deadlines, but I finally caved into one of these very popular cutting tools.

So there it sits on my desk, as it has since the day I brought it home. Today I can honestly say that I wonder what I ever did without this tool. It’s one heck of a hole punch, essentially. Sure, it has eyelet setting tools, but I haven’t used an eyelet since 2004, so that part has gone wholly untested. What really works for me about it is that because of its design (it has a 6″ reach), I can punch a small (1/16″) or a large (3/16″) hole anywhere on almost any scrapbook project I make. Also, because it is so heavy duty, I can punch through almost anything. From fabric to chipboard, canvas to thick paper and even acrylic,  I’ve chomped right through many materials to make holes for ribbons, brads, or any other reason I might have.

The key to actually using it is that it is right on my desk. I don’t have to dig it out from some hidden space. – when I need holes punched I just run my project through it! Since purchasing this tool, my need for band-aids and Neosporin due to craft knife and paper piercing tool injuries from putting holes into projects has become all but non-existent. In short, I’m loving this tool!

On the flip side, despite my passion for my Big Bite, I still don’t have any interest in the original Crop-A-Dile (pictured above). Not only is it very limited in depth as to where it can punch or set eyelets, but because of the design the punched circles of material can potentially fly out of the tool – potentially causing injury. Scrapbook Update’s own Betsy Burnett experienced this first-hand when a piece of laminant she was punching flew out and got embedded in her eye. I’m sure this isn’t common – but if you’re like me and putting all kinds of materials through your tool, it would be better to just get the Big Bite – where any debris goes down through the hole (and onto your work surface) – and it would be nearly impossible to injure yourself with debris.

So that’s my story of impulse purchase turned craft staple! Since I put brads through many of my layouts (and often in the center and through multiple layers) what previously required bravery and a kraft knife now just is a push of an orange handle. In short: the Crop-A-Dile Big Bite is fabulous. I have not used a regular hole punch even once since this tool came into my studio, and I’m so glad that my deadline madness led me to discover this great tool!

The Crop-A-Dile Big Bite II is a product of We R Memory Keepers. Scrapbook.com currently has the Big Bite II for $24.99, and is featuring an informative demonstration video of the tool as well.

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19 Responses to Review: We R Memory Keepers Crop-A-Dile Big Bite

  1. Renee J. April 23, 2011 at 9:00 pm #

    May, thank you so much for the great review of the Big Bite! I am sorry, though, for your battle scars :(. I know what you mean. I came close myself when I attempted to make holes in chipboard using a hammer, etc. After more than several unsuccessful attempts and the first page of my board book about to be ruined, I decided to stop. I headed over to Michaels with coupon in hand and headed for the Big Bite!! I am so glad that I did! It made the holes with ease….and I finished my board book in time for the DT assignment I was working on. I have to say that the Big Bite was one of the best scrapbooking purchases I have ever made. I can’t wait to see what else it can do. Thanks so much for letting me share, too.

    Once, again, thank you for an awesome review of this great product!! I love reading Scrapbook Update!!

  2. Denise April 23, 2011 at 9:34 pm #

    I still don’t have the Big Bite and I used my regular Crop-A-Dile ALL the time. It’s a must have tool along with my Cutterbee scissors. :)

  3. Noelle April 23, 2011 at 11:26 pm #

    I was given a Big Bite for Christmas by a friend 2 years ago. I’ve never opened it. I couldn’t imagine what I would use it for, because I hate eyelets. But I also knew my scrapbooking tastes change, it my friend had to have found an awesome deal on it, so I kept it…unopened. I may just have to try it out, since I keep poking holes in my fingers every time I try to set a brad.

  4. kathy s April 24, 2011 at 3:31 am #

    I have been considering one of these tools and been tossing up which to get I think you just answered that question for me- I will have to source one in our area as they are hard to come by -I have just started using eyelets again (to use up some of my stash) so this could be very handy there too -thanks for the insight and info

  5. Carol 6158 April 24, 2011 at 6:11 am #

    Love the article, May. And I’m so glad you’ve finally found one of my favorite toys. The Crop-a-dile 2 has long been my go to hole punch. when all I need is a hole to push ribbon or string or an embellie thru, it is what I reach for. And it reaches where I want it to be. I was a fairly new scrapper when it came on the scene and have been using it ever since.

  6. Allison LP April 24, 2011 at 8:11 am #

    The Big Bite was the first Crop-A-Dile I bought. I loved the 6 inch reach. But when Wal-Mart had the original on sale for $10, how could I pass that up?
    Recently at work, one of my co-workers needed a hole in the strap of her pocket book. I told her I’d bring her something to make the hole. I brought the small Crop-A-Dile, and it punched though the leather like butter.
    I must admit I don’t use eigher too very often, but I’m glad I have them, and wouldn’t give them up!

  7. Cindy d April 24, 2011 at 8:57 am #

    I don’t have or need the original Crop-a-Dile, but I do love my Big Bite for all the reasons you mentioned. Great article.

  8. Pamela McGillin April 24, 2011 at 9:07 am #

    The big bite was one of my earlier purchases, I have to say I’ve never experienced the pain of trying to pierce the center of my page. The first time I couldn’t get the reach I needed, I went Michael’s with a coupon & got myself the big bite. I use it all the time.The eyelet setting works well after you figure it out.
    Thanks for the great review. If you ever try the Crop-A-Dile III, I’d love a review. I just don’t see how it’s useful.

  9. Jennifer Earley April 24, 2011 at 10:20 am #

    I love my Big Bite!!!! I’ve used it for so many LOs to get those brads and eyelets in the middle of the page…wonderful :) It’s a great tool for so many things. I’ve even used it to make another hole on a belt of mine!

  10. Joanne H April 24, 2011 at 10:42 am #

    May, another well written review. I just love my Crop-A-Dile II !

    I love the way it punches through the chipboard for my mini scrapbooks and its ability to reach the center of a page. I gave away my original crop-a dile, as I found I only use this big one. I highly recommend this purchase, you will find yourself reaching for this tool often :0)

  11. marchelle April 24, 2011 at 11:55 am #

    I actually have 2 one in the orig. orange that stays in my rolling tote for crops and another in PINK….that sits on my crafting table and gets its fair share of a work out daily. I could not function w/o it. I still have the orig. Crop-a-dile…but it really just collects dust for now…I even purchased a 3rd BB this past fall when I found a screaming deal and gave it to my daughter. It is by far one of the best investments that I too bought by shear impulse.

  12. Lyneen April 24, 2011 at 1:11 pm #

    Great review. I have had a Crop-A-Dile since they first came out. In fact I have two as one was a gift. Use them all the time for making books out of chipboard.

    I have never owned a Big Bite. I may have to invest in one to get to those hard to reach places!

  13. Mary L April 24, 2011 at 4:53 pm #

    As with so many things, you are correct in saying that they are more likely to be used if they are right where you can easily grab them, not buried away…I know i use the tools/stuff on the top of my desk way more often than things I have carefully stored away! Thanks for the review.

  14. Theresa Amlong April 24, 2011 at 6:10 pm #

    I have that original crop a dile and find it too big for my hand. I just can’t get a grip on it! What I wonder is if the Big Bite solves that problem. Do you just push the lever down and don’t have to grip and squeeze?

    • Melissa in SC May 11, 2011 at 12:46 pm #

      Yes! That is one fo the things I like about the Big Bite. You get leverage with the design and don’t have to rely solely on hand strength. I had the original Crop-a-Dile but recently gave it away because I never used it once I got the Big Bite.

  15. Gab April 25, 2011 at 6:49 pm #

    Great article, thanks May

  16. Nikki April 25, 2011 at 10:29 pm #

    I was feeling bad that all I used mine for was hole punching… thanks for taking away that feeling. It is one of my favourite tools. I got mine for 80% off – very lucky :)

    I also find it handy as I have bad hand cramps (I have had carpal tunnel Syndrome) but find the Big bite takes all the hassle away and is so easy to use.

    Thanks for another great article!

  17. Carrie April 26, 2011 at 7:07 am #

    I absolutely love my Crop-a-dile, so I bought the Big Bite when it first came out and was very disappointed. It sets eyelets and grommets in a very unattractive way. It’s heavy and a pain to store. However, my Crop-a-dile is one of my most used tools.

  18. Melissa Stinson April 26, 2011 at 7:43 am #

    Great review, May!!

    I seem to be the opposite with my Crop-A-Diles for some reason, though. I use my little one tons, and my Big Bite sits on a shelf collecting dust most of the time. I think I’m too lazy to actually get it out and use it, and the small one is just more accessible.

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