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Re: board cutters

>From:    Melissa Hatalsky <missyh@xxxxxxxxxx>
>I would like to know what brand of board cutter I should be thinking of =
>investing in?

A nice chunk of cast iron taking up a fair amount of floor space is ideal,
but there are less expensive and invasive alternatives.

C&H mat cutters are fairly inexpensive (may sometimes be found used at
picture framing shops) and can do a good job.  Not in one swipe of the
cutting arm, as a board shear will do, but cleanly.  When you've cut your
board(s), simply put the cutter away.

The cutting head takes two single-edge blades.  One for straight cuts and
one for making a 45 degree bevel cut.

Standard single-edge blades will work alright, but a better choice would be
the C&H Advantage mat cutter blades (No. 1200SE).  These blades are
sharpened on one side only (cleaner cut edges) and are stiffer than the
blades you'll find at the hardware store which will leave a straighter cut

It is still important to first cut the boards a little bit oversize (1/8 -
1/4 inch, or so) before trimming to the final size.  Even though there is a
clamp on the board shear and on the mat cutter, a cleaner, straighter cut
will result if
there is only a little bit of material to cut away.

Another tip, when accuracy is important, I don't rely on a pencil mark. In
fact, I rarely use a pencil for anything other than making notes or a
drawing.  Instead, I use a sharp pointed awl.  Then the blade is set to cut
from the center of one hole to the center of the other hole.

Hope this helps.


Jack C. Thompson
Thompson Conservation Lab
Portland, Oregon  USA


"The lyfe so short; the craft so long to lerne."

Chaucer, _The Parlement of Foules_ 1386.

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