Since 1932, we've specialized in industrial cutter sales, hard-to-find parts, service, retrofitting, paper handling machines, all-in-one paper cutting systems, paper sheeters, and three-knife trimmers for commercial print shops.
You’ve decided to buy an industrial cutter and have done all your homework, reviewed proposals, read literature and learned some key terms. But if you’re like most, you’re still a bit confused about features, various options (how do you decide?) and the extensive terminology.
In this two-part series, we'll start with basic considerations when buying a cutter: size of material to be cut, type of material, time you’ll spend cutting, available machine support (and parts), and finally safety features.
Guillotine paper cutters can be found in nearly every print shop. While safety and performance have improved in recent years, cutters still contain the same basic components—a knife, clamp, table and backgauge—that they’ve had for the past century. As a result, most industrial paper cutters will have a long usable life.
Unlike other equipment, such as pre-press, that have seen radical changes in technology, the most important factors to consider when purchasing a paper cutter are not the brand or computer system. It is more important to consider the following:
Ignoring these basic considerations can make any paper cutter the wrong cutter for your needs.
Size of the material being cut is an important factor when choosing a cutter. All paper cutters have a fixed cutting width. If your material fits in the machine, it can be cut.
However, there are other factors to be considered:
Sheets have two dimensions, length and width. If the cutter is larger then those dimensions, the material to be cut will fit. But an additional consideration, one that is often missed, is what happens to the material during the cutting process.
For print shops looking to split larger sheets, an industrial cutter that will handle the short size and allow for splitting of the longer size may be acceptable. However, when sheets need to be trimmed on all four sides, the cutter size must be larger than the longest dimension to allow for turning and alignment on the cutter table. The longest dimension on a sheet is measured on a diagonal corner to corner. The calculation for determining the diagonal of a sheet is A2 + B2 = C2.
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