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Rotary Cutter Help

Rotary Cutter Help

Old 05-28-2012, 08:25 AM
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Default Rotary Cutter Help

I have used a rotary cutter for cutting my quilt pieces several times and every time I have the same problem, my lines are not stright all the way through my layers of fabric....what am I doing wrong?
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Old 05-28-2012, 08:41 AM
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First question I would ask is how many layers are you cutting at a time. I rarely will cut more then two. I'm just not that brave. I did work with a layer cake recently and did it in 3 to four layers but I was only doing two cuts. I spent alot of time making sure all layers were even, almost could have just done two but I was being stubborn. Hope that helps.
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Old 05-28-2012, 08:43 AM
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Use a ruler with sticky/sandpaper on the back so it will not move. Walk your hand up the ruler as you cut. Only move the hand when you are NOT cutting. Stand at a comfortable height. Try not to cut through too many layers of fabric. Most important, use a SHARP blade, no nicks. Sometimes you need a new cutting board. Try not to always cut on the same line on the board. And, most of all be safe, I had band-aides on all of my fingers before I learned how to use a cutter; even tried to cut a few fingers off!
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Old 05-28-2012, 09:02 AM
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Be sure to keep your blade pressed against the edge of the ruler and make note of the angle of your cutting hand. The cutter might be angled slightly like this / toward the ruler at one end of the strip and like this \ at the other; both angles will affect the strip width and smoothness.

1. Next time you cut a strip, before you move the ruler and with your hand still on it, gently move the cut strip out of the way.
2. Look carefully along the cut edge of the ruler....do you see any threads of uncut fabric where you may have wobbled the cutter blade at an angle away from the very edge of the ruler?

Because I am also guilty of over- or under-cutting the ruler, I usually try to angle this way / every time.

Jan in VA
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Old 05-28-2012, 10:25 AM
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Be very sure you have only one blade in the cutter.

Lu in TN
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Old 05-28-2012, 11:34 AM
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Originally Posted by Jan in VA View Post
... like this / toward the ruler at one end of the strip and like this \ at the other;...
Oh, Jan!!! I just love your 'picture' demonstrations.
Nancy in western NY
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Old 05-28-2012, 11:43 AM
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I'd agree to be careful not to try cutting too many layers at once - I am guilty of this and I tend to over compensate by pushing too hard, which has resulted in many 'non-healing' groves in my mat. I also get so concentrated on pushing that sometimes the ruler slips and I also end up with off strips. All in all, best to take the time to only do a 2 or 3 layers of fabric, making sure you have a new and sharp blade so you're not tempted to push down so hard.
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Old 05-28-2012, 02:37 PM
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There was a tip on the board saying to paint a light coat of rubber cement on the ruler that is next to the fabric. This keeps the ruler from slipping. I did that to my rulers & have noticed the difference.
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Old 05-28-2012, 06:05 PM
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I don't over stack the pile, the problem is the fabric shifts and when you have many layers, more chance of shifting. It does help to stack the layers and press them. This does help, sorta nestles them in to each other, less shifting.
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Old 05-28-2012, 06:19 PM
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thanks for all of the information, I will try them all
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