I've seen some folks here extolling the virtues of their rotary paper trimmer recently. What's the difference between the rotary and the sliding edge trimmer (not the guillotine)? I'm getting ready to get a new trimmer and was wondering which I should buy.
Hi Lucinda - The rotary has a round wheel slicer that you push across the track. It seems that most of the people who are complaining about there Fiskars not holding up - it is the sliding edge.
With the rotary there is an oval opening which is clear. If you lined your pictures up with the bottom of the cardstock page and tap it to make sure its at the bottom, the bring it to the bottom of the oval opening, the roatary cutter will give you a perfect mat. You have to turn the picture to the side and tap it even with the bottom of the cardstock and then bring it until the top of the picture is at the bottom of the oval opening and when you cut, its perfect on that side.
Then just center your picture on the mat. Takes seconds to make perfect mats.
You can also buy different blade for the rotary to make wavy lines and different cuts. I bought them but never used them.
I have tried the sliding and had a terrible time lining things up or making matts.
I had one rotary trimmer. I HATED it! Could have just been that particular one. It was an X-acto brand.
I've had 2 different Fiskars trimmers. I like my newer one better, with the triple track blade. I've had it over 5 years now. I'm perfectly happy with it.
The rotary is a round blade that turns as you cut, the other is a straight blade.
I think the simplest explanation of the difference is one is like a pizza cutter wheel and the other like a razor knife.
I have both. I use the rotary most of the time - it's a 6 year old Cutterpede that has seen better days. I tried to replace it and actually ended up digging it out of the trash. I love that thing and the interchangeable blades.
If I need precise lines I use the other one. When making some styles of cards this comes in esecially handy.
I love my Making Memories rotary trimmer. The difference in the cut is that the rotary trimmers actually cut the paper and the little v-type blade ones rip through the paper and dull very fast. That's why most of the time you have the ragged edges with those type of cutters. The best part of the Making Memories trimmer is that it is a self-sharpening blade so you never have to replace a blade. I've had mine a couple years and it cuts as cleanly as the day I bought it.
I had a regular ol paper trimmerand hated it-it seems like I was always replacing the blade on it. I switched to a rotary cutter and have never looked back-although I don't use a rotary trimmer I have a hand held rotary, a rotating self healing mat with a clear quilting ruler. I don't have to move my paper or photos just rotate the mat. And after using my cutter for 5 years 3 with fabric and 2 with paper I have yet to change the blade and still get a perfectly clean cut!
I've started with the Fiskars portable trimmer type. I like that I can cut from thinner scraps. The rotary has a guide/protector close to the blade edge and won't allow for this type of cutting unless you remove it. Also, the Fiskars was nice in that I could create frames because I could pick the blade up and start and stop anywhere on the page (in a straight line of course). You can only start on the edge of the paper with the rotary.
I also have the MM trimmer. My Fiskars had gotten old and started to give me crooked cuts. The MM trimmer does a much better job getting them precisely straight. Also, as has already been mentioned above, the blade of the MM trimmer is self sharpening so you don't have to replace blades at all. You had to do that quite often with the other type.
Still, I went and bought another sliding blade version because I missed the first two assets so much. So I use both - depending on what job I trying to do.
One really nice thing about the rotary style is that you can usually get decorative blades to do deckle and scallop cuts. I love a deckled edge!
Rotary style is less precise as far as where you start and where you end up, due to the inherent nature of a round blade and the necessary housing, but I never do precision cuts like that so it's not an issue. If I did need to be that exact I would use an xacto blade and a ruler (or an xacto blade and my DH's drafting tools ... or more to the point I would try to get DH to actually cut it, lol, he's extremely precise).
I have the Cutterpede rotary with interchangeable blades (including a perforations blade and a scorer) and I LOVE it. It's over 3 years old and I've only had to replace the rubber cutting surface so far, not the blades. Finding where the cut ends is a little trial and error, but not so much that you ruin a project. Worst case you stop slightly short and finish with scissors.
I also have a brand new Fiskars mini with blade for travelling. I find that tears the paper and there is space for the blade to wobble so you can get a wonky cut if you're not careful. I'd be worried about the blades dulling quickly too, although I haven't used it enough to tell yet.
Overall, my vote would be for the rotary.
Edited by RedSquirrel on 07-11-11 07:59 PM. Reason for edit: Cutterpede not Cutterbee
I have both types of Fiskars trimmers, and I used to have the guillotine trimmer, too.
I love the edge. It's lightweight, small, easy to grab, and easy to take to crops. The blade does dull quickly if I am cutting photos. The blades last a long time if I'm just cutting paper. Replacements are inexpensive and super easy to change out. I have a scoring blade as well.
I love my rotary, too. The blade lasts for a really, really long time. I don't care to change it, though. It's very easy to cut yourself badly.
I hated the giullotine and gave it the boot. I could not get it to cut straight to save my life. Well, I could.....but 90% of my photos came out crooked.