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Thread: How often do you change your blades?

  1. #1
    Super Member Flying_V_Goddess's Avatar
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    I've been teaching myself how to rotary cut. Its been going great so far. Today I decided to finish cutting my binding strips, which started off great but then it gave me problems. In some spots it hadn't cut through the second layer of fabric. Then I'd have to go back and make another swipe...and half the time my hand would shift and the ruler would be off and I'd cut in the wrong spot. I was applying the same amount of pressure as I normally would and after it wouldn't cut right I would apply just a little bit more and it still wouldn't cut all the way through.

    I think my blade needs to be changed, but I've only cut a yard of fabric (mostly into 2 1/2" strips and then a 12x14" panel). Seems like it would be too soon to change blades. But I'm new to rotary cutting so I don't know how often the blades should be changed. How often should blades be changed?

  2. #2
    Moderator Jim's Gem's Avatar
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    I have a Marteli Rotary cutter and one of their blades in the cutter. I don't remember the last time I changed the blade but I have at least 18 quilts and 11 aprons cut out on this blade and it still is good
    I find that the Marteli blades last much much longer in the cutter than the Olfa or fiskars blades do.

  3. #3
    lllog's Avatar
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    I cut fabric for customers in my shop and I haven't changed blades for several months.

    A hint when cutting fabric:

    Always keep your ruler pressed on the bolt side of the fabric while pulling the othet edge away. That way, if you need to recut, you are less likely to messup.

    Lanny

  4. #4
    Power Poster amma's Avatar
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    It may be that when you are starting to cut, you are bumping the blade into the ruler. Or pushing the blade into the ruler instead of alongside of it. This will cause knicks in the blade and the skipped cuts you are describing :D:D:D

  5. #5
    Super Member donnajean's Avatar
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    I seldom change a blade & have made many quilts. Some fabrics tend to have some toughter to cut spots, & may take a second swipe. I don't take my hand off the ruler until the piece I have cut is free & clear. I have better control of ruler & rotary cutter when I cut toward myself, even though this is not the way they teach.

  6. #6
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    I change mine, when the blade either begins to miss cutting threads or I need to press down too hard to cut through the layers.

  7. #7
    Power Poster sueisallaboutquilts's Avatar
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    I don't know when you are "supposed" to but I change mine only when they do not cut without a lot of difficulty. I'd much rather buy fabric lol

  8. #8
    bj
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    Super Member bj's Avatar
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    I change mine when I realize I'm working way too hard at cutting something out!

  9. #9
    Super Member Flying_V_Goddess's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by amma
    It may be that when you are starting to cut, you are bumping the blade into the ruler. Or pushing the blade into the ruler instead of alongside of it. This will cause knicks in the blade and the skipped cuts you are describing :D:D:D
    I try to make sure the ruler is right up against the ruler before cutting, but I don't really push up against it while cutting.

    But one thing I noticed was possibly my blade wasn't screwed on very tightly. I had taken the blade off because black lint had built up underneath the blade guard and I took the blade off to remove it. I made sure the blade was put on right, but maybe I didn't screw it back on tightly enough. It was on pretty tight, but on further inspection I noticed it could wobble the slightest bit. I tightened the screw so that the blade would still turn, but would move from side to side. Unfortunatly I'm out of fabric for the moment so I can't test out this theory.

  10. #10
    Super Member Quiltforme's Avatar
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    The spots that I miss is from the cutting mat If you have used the same spot over and over you might have a divot?? try a different area on your mat. Just a suggestion.

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