Cutter Selection Guide
There are so many different kinds of cutters out there, each of them ideally suited for specific applications. Sometimes the vast variety out there can be overwhelming, and so we've created this cutter selection guide to help cut through confusion. As you browse the guide, please know that you can contact us at any time with questions by calling us at (866) 537-2244. And rest easy knowing that, no matter what kind of paper cutter you are looking for, we have the solution for you at Binding101, where paper finishing is our specialty.
Shop by Cutter Style:
Cutter Explanations | How to Choose a Cutter
Rotary Trimmers - Also called rolling trimmers, these cutters use a round blade that slides across a rail or bar, slicing cleanly through your paper or media. This style of cutter offers incredible precision, and only trims through a single, or a couple of sheets at a time. This is why they are a popular choice for professional photographers, graphic designers, crafters, etc. The base of these cutters most often has a guide pre-printed to help you achieve a perfectly placed cut, as well as clear vision of the blade and where it will cut your pages. The circular blade cuts both directions, and can often be changed out for perforation and scoring blades, depending on the brand and model.
Guillotine Cutters - This style of cutter is often the first thing that people picture when they imagine a cutter. It uses a long, single, curved blade embedded into a handle that is pulled down to cut through pages from one end to the other. These cutters are usually suited for cutting through thinner stacks of sheets, often up to 20 pages. They are a popular choice for schools, businesses, and organizations who may need to cut fliers, cards, and other general office pages. The old fashioned guillotine cutters were known as being a bit dangerous, but nowadays they are equipped with safety features to help protect your users. They are not known for being especially accurate, due to the way the blade contacts the pages and the stack shift that can take place.
Stack Cutters - A stack paper cutter is similar to a guillotine, however,the blade is straight and cuts across the entire stack at the same time. This makes them accurate and powerful. As the name suggests, these paper cutters are meant to cut through a thick stack of sheets at once, sometimes up to 3" thick. They are available in either manual or electric options,and all have extreme safety features to prevent blade movement when covers are not down, and more. Stack cutting tools are ideal for businesses, larger schools, print shops, and other organizations that must cut a lot of paper.
Electric Cutters - Electric paper cutters are the most efficient way to precisely cut very thick stacks of paper, often up to 4" thick, quickly, safely, accurately, and easily. These heavy duty cutting machines and are ideal for high volume or industrial situations; they allow a user to power through stacks of paper without any effort, as they are controlled by a button or a foot pedal. Most electric paper cutters feature true two-hand operation for maximum safety and an optical cutting line for accuracy. These features combined with an array of other safety features will ensure your operators are kept protected. Fully automatic paper cutters and semi-automatic paper cutters are available, and they are most popular for quick-print, copy shop, in-plant, offset, or on-demand operations.
Precision Bar Cutters - Cutter bars offer a rotary-style cutting motion that offers extreme precision, but using a straight blade that glides across the surface. These cutters offer extreme precision, and are not attached to any gridded table, which makes them ideal for extra large applications. They actually start at 40" wide and go up to as long as 124", so they are used almost exclusively in print shops and artist studios. They are suited for a variety of media and substrates as well, which makes them very versatile.
Card Cutters - Card cutters, or also known as business card slitters, are either manual or electric machines that turn full sheets into several cards. Most of them are meant for business cards only, but some will also cut post cards, photos, and other card sizes. These machines take the tedious and time consuming job of cutting one sheet into 10+ cards and do it all in one or two passes through the blades, making it much more efficient.
Corner Cutters - Also called corner rounders, these machines do exactly what the name implies; the round out the 90 degree edges of paper. Corner rounders can be manual or electric, and are often used for paper, plastic, and sometimes even sign metal. They can usually cut in different radius sizes with simple die-changeout. Corner cutters can be used in any industry that wants to create a rounded edge instead of the sharp corners.
Foam Board Cutters - Used almost exclusively in photo, graphic design, and sign shops, foam board cutters cut through mounting boards, and various other substrates, with ease and accuracy. They are actually designed to cut all the sheet materials used in the modern graphics industry, including paper, laminate, and several different kinds of graphic boards' some even cut/score acrylic. These graphic board cutters have a larger cutting space than rotary trimmers or stack cutters, and are therefore quite a bit longer to handle even large foam boards.
Popular Cutter Videos:
How to Choose a Cutter:
If you're still unsure about what kind of cutter you need, then you can ask yourself the following questions, and email us at firstname.lastname@example.org with your answers. We will have an expert contact you with professional recommendations.
- What type of media or substrates do you need to cut?
- What is the thickness of your thickest material?
- What are the dimensions of the material are you cutting?
- What are your accuracy requirements?
- Will you use the cutter occasionally or often?
- Do you have any physical space constraints?
Shop by the Kind of Material You Need to Cut
There is a fairly simple way to figure out which kind of cutter category you should be shopping in. Just asses the material you plan to cut. Here are a few basic rules you can consider, and below that, a more detailed list with some of the most popular substrates our cutters are used for. Many cutters will be able to handle various materials, so just choose the option below that is going to be your primary substrate.
- Your material can be cut with scissors - Shop rotary trimmers and guillotine cutters
- Your material can be cut with a utility blade - Shop cutter bars and board cutters
- Your material cannot be cut with any handheld tool - Shop electric cutters