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Thread: I can't use a rotary cutter

  1. #101
    Super Member chuckbere15's Avatar
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    Also, I don't know if anyone else stated, but I will let you in on a little secret. When using a rotary cutter and a longer ruler than your hand, stop the blade at the end of your hand and reposition your hand further down the ruler. Again, stop the blade before moving your hand. When you go past your hand it acts like a pivot point and you will have less than straight lines. Another trick I learned is to rest the outer two fingers on your fabric and the other three on the ruler.

    I haven't tried it it, but Joanns sells a product that you can mount on the bottom of the ruler to aid in the ruler from not slipping. I was in a shop hop and the lady that was cutting my fabric show me the hand trick and then let me try. It diffinitly will help as it did me. I heard that the sell little stick on circles that grip the fabric.

  2. #102
    Super Member chuckbere15's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cosy
    My problem is not slippage, at least not so much. My problem is getting the fabric actually cut. Even with a brand new blade, even cutting single layers, I get a lot of skips, where the fabric just isn't cut. If I go back, then the 2nd cut doesn't quite line up. I have an olfa 45 ml that I use mostly. I work on either my dinner table or the kitchen counter, the height doesn't seem to make a diference. I end up either using scissors or for strips, tearing. Any advice here?
    I would find a guild and ask someone there for pointers. Take a yard, your ruler, and cutter. Go early, you may have to pay a guest fee, but two things will happen. First, someone will be more than happy to pass on their knowledge. This I learned from this board and the two guilds that I belong to. Another member mentioned having someone watch you and give pointers on technique. Second, you will make new friends and possibly join the guild.

    I posted another comment before this reply as I'm now reading everyone advice, please take a look at my other comment and I bet you hand placement is all wrong as mine was.

  3. #103
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    My cutting has improved since I started putting several dabs of clear "rubber cement" on the backs of my rulers so
    they don't slip. Works much better for me than using those suck-on handles or the peel & stick non-slip clear backings. When they begin to wear off, just reapply new dabs (you can remove them anytime by just rolling your finger over the edges & they roll up & off).

    Also, the June Tailor Shape Cut is great for getting straight cuts. My only regret about it is that I bought the 12" one instead of the larger one. It's been worth the $$ for me as it eliminates 'elbows' in long strips. Since I bought the smaller one, I often have to fold the fabric a time or two before cutting, in which case I use a 60mm rotary cutter to cut through the four layers more easily than with a 45mm blade; easier on my hands.

  4. #104
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    Quote Originally Posted by antiquegirl68
    I don't think it is because you are left handed, I have the same problem but was thinking it is something wrong with me. It looks straight until I cut it and then it looks like I was drunk or something I hold my ruler there and everything but still comes out crazy.
    Try this, Hold the ruler on the fabric with your left hand. Using your left hand will keep the fabric and ruler from wobbling. Using a fresh sharp blade, use your right hand to run the blade along the right edge of the ruler, cutting off a piece of fabric the exact size you want. It is just cutting, nothing fancy to holding the rotary cutter, just take it slow.

  5. #105
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    One in my group is left handed, teacher put the blade on the opposite side for her and it works great.

    Hope this helps, she did well after a bit ofpractice.

  6. #106
    Super Member sewingsuz's Avatar
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    I am a lefty and I have the same problem about what side. We cannot do the cutting the same as right haned. It does make a big difference.
    Quote Originally Posted by 3incollege
    I am left handed and I only had a problem of which side to cut. Make sure you are presses down hard enough.
    Just practice and you will get the hang of it. Are you changing your blades?

  7. #107
    Senior Member auniqueview's Avatar
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    I used the rotary cutter to cut a panel out of some fabric I bought at a yard sale. DOn't ask me what it is, lol...but it is soft and silky feeling. I cut a panel out and made a bag, and had no trouble following my line. Thanks for tipping me to switching the blade to the other side.
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  8. #108
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    Quote Originally Posted by Prism99
    A much cheaper thing to try out first (for straight strips) would be a June Tailor Shape Cut mat. This is a flexible mat with cut-outs to hold your rotary cutter in place as you roll. If your problem is with how you are holding the rotary cutter (the blade should not be tilted as you roll), it will show up when you use this mat.
    I agree. The Shape Cut mat could be your answer. The slots hold your blade in place and make your cuts straight. I really love mine and use it everytime I cut fabrics for a quilt.

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