Mini to Nano: Cutting a Sim Card

The other day, a friend asked me about what phone I recommend that they get. They had some unique needs, and I recommended a phone for them. One thing that I didn’t consider was that the new phone used a nano sim card slot, and their old phone used a micro sim card slot.

Fortunately, this wasn’t really a problem for me, as I have cut down sim cards before. It always causes the person I’m helping to raise an eyebrow, though, and sometimes it can be difficult to get them to accept that it is okay for them to hand over the sim card to me and my scissors. I think that they were particularly doubtful, since their new phone came with specific instructions and warnings against cutting down a card to fit.

However, with a little calm reassurance, I convinced them to let me cut down their sim card. I used this template:


WARNING: cutting your sim card could cause it to never work again, and at the least, it will not be the bigger size that it was before, and certainly can’t go back into the phone it came out of. Do this at your own risk!

One thing that card cutters often forget is the thickness of the card. On the above pdf file, they mention this as a foot note:

The difference in thickness between NanoSIMs and previous SIM cards (90µm) corresponds to the thickness of a human hair and should therefore not make any difference in practice. Nevertheless you may slightly grind the plastic side of your SIM card. Never grind the chip side!

I typically just sand the back plastic side for a few seconds with a 200 grit sand paper, and I have always had a good fit. So, if you are willing to accept the risks, and run into a similar problem, then this might be a good option for you, too.

Linux – keep it simple.