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Stay Sharp with Cutters and Routers

(June 2014) posted on Wed Jun 18, 2014

More than 50 sources of cutters, cutting systems, routers, and trimmers.

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Cutting to size or shape is often a critical step in the finishing process. But what kind of machine is best for your particular operation and the types of jobs you typically take on?

Do you need equipment that can cut a wide range of substrates from standard rollfed media to rigid substrates like metal, foamboard, and wood – and perhaps fabrics as well? How important is contour cutting to you? What kind of speeds do you feel you must have in order to stay relevant with deadlines? And, of course, what substrate/media sizes are you typically dealing with?

To aid you in your search process for the best cutting or routing solution for your shop, we provide the following sourcelist of more than 50 companies that produce cutters, cutting systems, routers, and trimmers designed for wide-format graphics. In each company listing, we highlight some of the products they have to offer (to view all of the company’s available products, visit their website). Note that we have not included printer-cutters in this list.

Advanced Greig Laminators
The AGL Auto Trim 4 is an inline automatic web trimmer and sheeter that utilizes a self-sharpening rotary blade. Capabilities include flush-edge, sealed-edge, and bleed-edge trimming; plus a program to trim step-and-repeat sheets. An optional “graphics registration” package allows trimming of individual sheets from continuous rolls of printed media. Available in 27-, 38-, 50-, and 63-in. cutting widths. AGL also offers other slitters and trimmers.

Akiles Products
Its Roll@Blade 64 is a 64-in. rotary trimmer featuring a self-sharpening tungsten rotary blade, an extra-rigid steel guide bar, an ergonomic metal blade carriage, a transparent clamping bar, an extra-wide working table, and more. Trimming capacity is 2-mm thick. Metal stand and waste catcher included. Other cutters and trimmers available.

Allen Datagraph Systems
Offers several cutters specifically designed for signage and graphics, including: the i-Tech cutters (in 24- to 60-in. sizes), which feature an EZ-Run Interface, precision motion control, and six programmable job set-ups; the Model 230 Vinyl Cutter, a 30-in. portable friction-feed, vinyl system; and the i-Tech Traffic Cutter line, specifically for materials used for highway and traffic signs including prismatic reflective materials (24- to 60-in.)