March 2006 send to a friend printable version
Uniden Digital Cordless Phone set.

The envelope please …

1st place.
The hard-plastic clamshell

Pictured Uniden Digital Cordless Phone set. It has 14 pieces, with rivets between each.

How long to open 9 minutes 22 seconds

Experience The clamshell didn’t take longest for our reporter to open, but it wins because he could have cut himself on its sharp edges. It was impossible to open by hand, and the plastic was too thick for scissors. He switched to a box cutter, which worked well, though cutting around corners was tricky and the blade slipped. Neither brute force nor a screwdriver would pry apart the rivets. He used a razor blade to bypass them and cut around each item, but he sliced the instruction manual and nearly cut the battery wires.

What a reader said about clamshells
“I had to use a saw blade to cut through the package and still sliced open my finger trying to tear it apart,” said Mark Eaton of Massachusetts, vice president of information systems for a housewares manufacturer.

A better way
The Schick Intuition All-In-One ladies’ razor. Press the top of the box to start releasing perforations around the perimeter of its plastic clamshell, then pull the package apart.