Let me start by saying I am no expert on cutting machines. I have never worked for a manufacturer and I am by now means a pro is in the crafting word. I have just a regular crafter/mom with opinions and a few tips on her cutting machine.
There are a lot of different craft cutting machines on the market today. I have had my Cricut Machine for over 7 years now. I really like it. I think the machine is well built, and it works well, but there are some things that drive me crazy about it! There are also some things that I love about it! I’ll also go over some of the tricks that I’ve learned over the years from owning my cricut. Hopefully, some of it will help you!
The thing that drives me the most crazy about the Cricut is the cartridges that they make you buy. I feel like it limits your creativity. Maybe, if the cartridges weren’t as expensive as they are it would be a little different. I know that there are other machines that don’t require you to have cartridges but you can buy individual cut files. I think that would be a lot better, at least for me. Then, you don’t have to have to buy one cartridge with so many different cut files just for the one that you want. That is probably my biggest complaint.
Tricks I’ve learned that have helped me with my cricut. . .
Use baby wipes to wipe off your mats. It has worked wonders! Whenever my mat loses its sticky-ness I just take a baby wipe, wipe it down, let it dry, and the sticky-ness comes back. Its great, it has saved many mats for me, because those are expensive too!
I have found the cutting slow usually works better. . . When my images aren’t working well, the paper keeps ripping if I slow down the speed that usually fixes the problem.
Using good quality paper works best. The thiner paper makes it hard for the machine to cut, it’ll still do it but really slow it down and use the right depth.
When cutting with vinyl the bigger the images the better it cuts. Sometimes I need to cut some super small words, and the cutting doesn’t work super well. First, make sure your blade it good, but second try to cut it bigger if you can. Small is hard, cutting big is easier. There are sometimes you can’t avoid it and you really need things small. Take your time and cut slow, if you try to be too fast things rip and there are just problems!
I try to remember to use test papers first to see how the cut will turn out, and if the size looks good. Sometimes I only have a limited amount of the good paper I need to use, so I just try it first on scrap paper to see if it will turn out!
There are a lot of really good things about the Cricut cutter. I do have the older cutter, so maybe these tricks wont be needed for the new cutters. . . I have enjoyed having it and I use it often! Its is a very good machine, it has worked well! After all these years of owning this machine, I don’t know if I would have bought it again. I may have gone with another brand of cutter. There are so many different options now that I wonder if there would have been something better for me. . . I think that all the options are good options, and I think that all would work probably just fine. Cutting machines tend to work well, at least all the different reviews I have read there are not huge differences in the way they cut and one isn’t WAY better then another. One of my biggest problems is that I do not loved “provo craft” they are the makers of the Cricut Machine and I have not loved them. . . I don’t love how they treat their customers, and their employee’s and that probably biases me about the machine.
It has been a good machine for me. Let me know if you have liked your machine, if you have another brand that you have enjoyed! If you have questions please feel free to contact me.