Nathan Newbury of TheMagicTouch tackles the common problem of wobbly cutter blades

My cutter is cutting all wobbly! What’s causing the problem and how do I solve it?

This is a common problem, with a number of different causes. First, the cutting strip wears with use and should be replaced when a deep groove has been formed. The groove causes the blade to deviate from its correct path and the cuts become distorted.

Next, there’s the blade holder: over time, as material is cut, dust and general rubbish enters the tool holder. The effect is to cause the blade rotation to become stiff and in the worst case the blade will drag sideways through the material. Cutting tools need maintenance, too, so remember to oil your blade holder regularly.

Finally, the cutting tip of your blade and the centre it rotates on are not the same: the difference is known as the ‘offset’. This enables your blade to make turns correctly – think of a shopping trolley wheel. If the blade offset is wrong, or your blade has lost its tip (which will alter your offset), you will end up cutting some odd corners. A quick way to establish correct offset is to cut a triangle, then compare it to the diagram below


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