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Board Shears, Cutters and Boards

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Hello list!

I am relatively new to bookbinding, well new to making them for other
than myself or for family, and I am looking for some advice on board
shears... I hope I am using the right terminology.

Anyhow, I am looking for something to cut book board with as I have been

using the good ol' exacto knife and a straight edge, I fear my fingers
days' are numbered - wow, that really sounds horrible :  ) . Right now I

am using mill board that measures 1/8" or 2.5mm (I am not sure what
calliper that is). I am looking at needing to cut enough board to make
approximately 20 - 25 books per month. This amount of board is enough
for me to want to get a piece of equipment to do the cutting so I do not

have to do it by hand (yikes), not to mention the amount of time that
cutting by hand takes.

However I do not feel that that amount of cutting justifies the cost of
a 40" Jacques board shear that was quoted to me the other day - $3,900
and change US (again, yikes...). Although the Jacques looks to be a
beautiful and no doubt accurate piece of equipment, and from what I tell

from lurking on the list, Jacques are the way to go. I just do not have
the space, the money nor the volume to support it.

On the other hand there is the Dahle Special Purpose Cutter 30" of which

I have been e-mailing back and forth with Pedram about. It looks pretty
good and the price is much more affordable, however at the same time I
am wondering if it will suit my needs.

I am wondering if others on the list have a Dahle and what they think of

them. Also, if anyone out there has any other suggestions for a cutter
/board shear I would greatly appreciate them.

As a side I have looked into ordering the boards pre-cut and am #1
concerned about the boards being cut to the grain properly, this matched

with #2 I think it near impossible to predict how much of the order to
get cut to what size; and #3 what if I change my mind about the sizes -
which undoubtedly will happen as I move along and change things as I go
- I don't want to be locked into using a particular size. It just seems
a little bit more freeing to have my own means of cutting my book board
- other than my exacto knife of course : ).

Another thing I need to look at is the board: thickness and type. Is it
best to be using Davey board? If so, where is the best place to order in

bulk in Canada? What is the usual thickness to be using for books? For

Thank you so much in advance for all of your time and consideration for
even just reading this :  ).


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