Welcome To CARL USA. All products are serviced and sold here in the US!
Well.. it is a hit or miss product that could be made 5 stars with 2 simple adjustments.
1) Make the magnetic bar go ALL THE ACROSS the cutter to secure to both ends and provide a locking nut on the end to tighten it so it cannot move. Whoever designed this should be fired immediately for not including at least a full bar. You can''t keep the bar in one place which is crucial for repeating cuts AND the bar shifts at the slightest touch so you never get a straight edge.
2) Trim away that extra yellow/green plastic so you can get small paper to cut. There is no need to that curved piece... in fact, I'm tempted to just take it to the circular saw and cut it off....
To be honest - none of the other trimmers on the market - even ones that cost a lot more - are any better. But come on Carl.... fix these 2 issues will ya!??!
It's not generally difficult for me to make purchasing decisions, but a paper trimmer became a glaring exception. I needed it primarily to create labels for a product we make by hand, and no matter how hard I tried, I couldn't make the labels by hand that were up to the standard of the product.
With their generous one-item coupons in mind, I checked the on-line catalogs of Joann Fabrics and Michael's Crafts, gave eBay the required cursory look just for price comparison, and concentrated on Amazon for reviews & Prime. I was prepared to drop $25 or $30.
I bought this trimmer from Amazon, and that was the right decision for me. Here's why. I needed to see the exact place where the cut would be made. I print tiny registration marks in the labels to help me keep them lined up properly as I change the item specifics in each, and also to show me precisely where to cut. For whatever reason, my printers haven't always placed a print in the exact same place on a page from copy to copy. Once I cut that first line, then the rest can be cut in a stack.
That brings me to a second point. The old guillotine cutter I bought years ago only manages a few pages of this 32# 100% cotton stock at once. It takes 2 passes of the cutter head, but with this trimmer, I can cut 20 pieces of that paper at once. The cuts are perfectly clean, straight, and square, and effortless to make.
The locking mechanism is both brilliant, and the reason this trimmer works so well, cuts such straight lines. If the lever is raised, the mechanism is unlocked, and paper can be moved around under it. Once lowered, it holds the paper absolutely still while you cut.
Many of the trimmers in the $25 to $30 range, and well into the hundreds, have some part of the contraption built into the base in such a way that the scale and/or grid is missing which makes cutting a narrow strip from a narrow strip impossible. You can do that with this trimmer, and the entire base is both intact and visible, though the portion directly under the locking mechanism is somewhat obscured by it.
The only other trimmers I saw with metal bases like this were made by X-Acto, but they lacked a sophisticated locking device for the paper, and they only cut a few pages at one time. I didn't want plastic.
The single con is the magnetic bar that's intended to be used for making multiple cuts of the same size, and the way it relates to the Slimer-green "light-gathering acrylic" guide. First, since my labels are about 1.275" wide and the guide is about 2" wide, the magnetic bar can't be brought close enough to use. Second, the magnet is quite strong, and that's good; it prevents accidental movement. It's also not so good in that the bar doe not have any mechanism to stay square, and must be manually squared each time it's moved. It takes a little effort because you need to fight with the magnet. I solved that by removing the magnet.
I like well made tools, and I have some of my grandfather's who passed more than 30 years ago who also invested in good tools during his life. I've skipped meals to buy well crafted tools, and I scrimped to get this one. Quality tools last, and they pay back much more than they cost over their lifetime of service. There weren't any shortcuts taken in the fabrication of this tool so far as I can see. Seams & corners meet perfectly, and the craftsmanship in general is impeccable. I feel comfortable in recommending this trimmer to anyone who's serious about their work. I wish I had another star to give out every hundred reviews. If I did, this would get it.
I have only had this cutter for a couple of days, but I have cut several hundred squares with it in that time. While not without some flaws, this is the best trimmer I have used.
After a couple of negative experiences with some cheaper trimmers, I bit the bullet and got this one. Yes, it is more expensive, but it is also better designed than the other ones I have used. It cuts very consistently and is accurate even when cutting through 20 sheets of 120gsm paper. Basically, this seems like a great paper cutter, so I will just outline the cons.
* the guides, while square with the blade and usable, are made from molded plastic and so they have a couple of small spots where they pull away from the guide edge by <1mm or so
* the movable magnetic guide could be a little bit better made both in form to fit the side guides and in they way it is constructed (also molded plastic)
* the light gathering plate, while useful, makes it very difficult to make cuts that are less than 3.5 inches wide, particularly if the amount you are trimming off is small
* the ruling marks could be a little finer to make it easier to measure accurate cuts
* the cutting mat strip seems like it may wear a bit quickly, but I did cut quite a lot of paper with it so far
Aside from these minor issues, this paper cutter works very well. I had read one complaint about the way the blade has to be locked and unlocked for every cut. This is true, but in the same way that my manual transmission car requires me to put it into gear and use the clutch every time I want to go anywhere. In both cases the upshot is better control.
When locked down the guide held the paper securely and the blade cut effortlessly, requiring no downward pressure at all, although cutting many layers requires more than one pass.
As a papercrafter I have used several paper trimmers. Even the nicest ones I used had a flaw--the paper could jump a little when running the slicer, blade or rotary over it. I knew I needed something that held the paper down while cutting besides my hand. This trimmer was the answer!
The only two flaws with it that I have found (but don't matter enough to me to detract stars):
1) I wish the back magnetic bar extended across the entire length of the board to attach to the other side.
2) If I want to trim small things that are already cut (less than 3 inches) I need to use another trimmer because the yellow paper clamp impedes this.
I have found that some of the machine trimmed papers (8x11 or 12x12, etc.) sometimes are not square and this baby makes the sides accurate. My OCD loves the straight lines every single time.
The back bar is very useful for cutting things the same length over and over. I bought this size to use it to cut 12x12 papers on an angle, which it does beautifully. The blade cuts so nicely and doesn't tear the paper leaving a smooth edge. It is also nicely weighted (read a bit heavy) so it doesn't slip around on the table when cutting!
I would buy this again in a heartbeat!