16 vital pieces of information for the purchase of a paper cutting machine

Welcome to the second part of our paper cutting machine guide. Find out here what else is important when buying a paper cutter. The first part of our buying guide can be found on our paper cutting machine info page.

A sharp and robust blade

No matter how well a cutter is made, a sharp or hard blade is critical to the quality of the cut. Whether it is the round blade of a rotary cutter or the blade of a lever cutter, only a sharp or well-made blade ensures a permanently clean and precise cut.

When buying a paper cutter, make sure that the quality of the blade is good. If the blade is dull, then the paper will either fray or it won’t cut properly at all. You will not be satisfied with the result of such a cut. Also important is how sturdy the knife or blade is installed. Weak and imprecise fixtures are bad for accuracy.

The blade of the lever cutter
The blade of the lever cutter

But even the best knife wears out over time. To ensure that the quality of the cut remains excellent, the blade can be replaced with a replacement blade or resharpened on many models. Some rotary cutters have a circular blade that sharpens itself.

You can find more info on roller and lever cutters in our guide.

The equipment

Reliability – Safety first

Every one of us knows that you have to be careful with scissors. This also applies to paper cutters. Therefore, adequate protection should not be neglected.

Rotary trimmers should have a cutting head that shields from the sharp circular blade. The blade of a lever cutter, on the other hand, is not sharp. The blade is sturdy and hard. There is more of a risk of bruising. That is why well-equipped machines are equipped with safeguards that prevent fingers from accidentally getting under the blade.

Finger guard
A finger guard prevents the worst from happening.

The Table Size

The size of the cutting table  plays an important role in the selection of a paper cutting machine. The size of the cutting table determines how large the size of the materials (photos, cardboard, paper or even foils) can be. Often, larger cutting machines  allow cutting harder and thicker materials.

The larger the table, the larger the work surface and therefore the larger the paper size. Usually, the size of the table of the paper cutter is specified in the product descriptions with the help of the table length and table width.  The actual usable area is usually somewhat smaller.  Angle systems and  the attachment of the blade also take up some space, thereby reducing the working area.

Therefore, the space for working is often smaller than the table size specification.  You should always  pay attention to the format specifications of the manufacturer.  Only then you can cut your desired paper size  without any problems.

Table width, table length and usable area Paper cutting machine
Table width, table length and usable area Paper cutting machine

8 Best Sellers & Offers Paper Cutting Machines

A piece of advice

The maximum size (A4, A3, A2…) is usually specified for the long side of the paper. If the narrower side is to be cut, this is also possible for the format next in size. We try to take this into account in our product comparisons.

Sufficient table size

If you want to cut more than just rectangular angles, make sure the table is large enough to rotate the sheets accordingly.

Angular systems

Angular systems simplify the work with the paper cutter. These border the table surface at the top and bottom respectively.

In good cutting machines, of course, these angular systems  are selected to match perfectly with the cutting length. In addition, these angle units can be used to cut rectangular angles precisely.

Comparison angular system paper cutting machine
Angle units simplify the cutting of 90 degree angles.

Length and format specifications

Rulers and scales

A sharp blade is not enough for a cut to succeed. The cut must also be made in the right place. Therefore, paper cutters offer different tools to help you work more precisely.

The more professional a paper cutter is, the more extensive the range of length specifications. Consequently,  the price of professional equipment is often higher than that of simple entry-level models.

A ruler or measuring scale may be positioned on either side of the paper cutter table. In Germany, centimeters and millimeters are normally specified. Sometimes paper cutters also offer inch measurements. The length specifications are convenient to cut the appropriate lengths and DIN sizes without much effort.

ruler grids and scales
A ruler and auxiliary grid help when cutting.
Auxiliary grid

In addition to length specifications, auxiliary grids are also very helpful. If smaller formats are to be cut, then these are particularly helpful. The spacing of the lines on paper cutters with an auxiliary grid is usually one centimeter.

DIN format specifications

In addition to auxiliary grids, DIN format specifications, such as for example. DIN A4, DIN A3 or DIN A2,  extremely useful.  If an appropriate format is to be cut, then these format specifications help to ensure that this is done easily and quickly.

The most important DIN paper sizes and their corresponding lengths and widths in millimeters.

DIN Page length Page width
A0  841mm  1189mm
A1  594mm  841mm
A2  420mm  594mm
A3  297mm  420mm
A4  210mm  297mm
A5  148mm  210mm
din format specifications
DIN format specifications are very convenient.
Angle specifications / angular grid

In addition to lengths  and formats, printed angles are very helpful when you want to cut different angles.

With the help of these angular grids, the paper can be cut cleanly and precisely at the desired angle. Therefore, anyone who regularly wants to cut different angles should make sure that the paper cutter has such angle specifications.

angular grid and specifications
Angle specifications help when cutting different angles.
The adjustable backgauge

The  backgauge of a paper cutting machine can be moved along the angle system. Once it is positioned at the desired location, the paper can be inserted quickly and easily.

adjustable backgauge
An adjustable backgauge significantly increases the working speed.
The pressing

To prevent the paper from slipping during the cutting process, it must be adequately held in place. The paper must either be pressed manually or the paper cutter is equipped with automatic pressing. With such a pressure rail, the paper is sufficiently held by a corresponding mechanism.

The weight and material of a paper cutting machine

The weight of a paper cutter should not be neglected. Even when using a simple device attention should be paid to the ideal weight as well as the appropriate material. The more stable the cutter is and the more stable it stands, the easier it is to work precisely and cleanly. On the other hand, heavier devices are not as handy to use as light and compact cutters. Before buying, you should consider whether the machine  will get a permanent workplace or will have to be stowed away after cutting each time.

Summary of the features of  Paper cutters.

The different models can be evaluated and compared with regard to the following properties:

  • Blade quality
  • Cutting length, which among other things determines the maximum format
  • Clean and precise cutting
  • Different format specifications and sizes
  • Maximum cutting height and the maximum possible thickness of the paper
  • Maximum number of paper sheets that can be processed in one operation
  • Measuring scales (auxiliary grids, rulers, angular grids and DIN A formats)
  • Angular systems and an (adjustable) backgauge for comfortable work
  • A stable and secure stand
  • An automatic pressing to prevent the material from slipping

In our comparisons of paper cutters , we have evaluated and compared many different models in terms of these features.

Where can I buy a paper cutter?

Nowadays there are two ways of buying a cutting machine. Either in specialized stores or online.

Large home or electronics retailers and specialty stores for photography and craft supplies sell paper cutters. The selection of paper cutting machines is based on the orientation of the specialty store. Craft supply stores offer equipment for crafting. Photography specialty stores offer specially designed paper cutters suitable for cutting photos. Large retailers usually have a wider selection.

Online retailers offer a similar selection of paper cutters. The assortment of an online retailer tends to be larger than that of a normal retailer. In return, you have to wait longer for the delivery.

More information on buying in retail stores or online.

How much does a paper cutter cost?

The price of a cutting machine depends on several factors. In addition to the quality, the cutting length and height play a decisive role along with the equipment. Simple paper cutters are available for around ten euros. Professional devices can cost even 1000 euros. If you want to tinker at home, you will not have to spend more than 50 euros. A decent device for the office can cost up to 150 euros.

Paper cutting machines and their cutting height – a comparison

As already mentioned, the cutting height is an important criterion for choosing the right paper cutter. This determines, among other factors, how many sheets can be cut in one pass. Lever and rotary cutters often differ considerably in this respect.

The slitters we have selected  feature cutting heights between 0.2 and 2 millimeters (Dahle 552). In contrast, the cutting heights of lever cutters range from 0.5 to 4  millimeters. If you intend to cut very few sheets at once, then it is worth taking a closer look at both types of paper cutting machines. However, if cutting heights of more than two millimeters are required, lever cutters have a clear advantage.

Price per cutting capacity and number of sheets

We were interested  to see how  a greater cutting height  would affect the price of the cutting machine. In our sample comparison, the price* for slitter rewinders with a cutting height of 1mm  is in the range of 15 and 25 euros. Lever cutters with this cutting height are priced between 20 and 30 euros*.

Since different manufacturers do not always use the same units in their specifications, we applied the following rule for our research:

[su_note note_color=”#f2f2f2″ text_color=”#333333″ radius=”3″]
[fac_icon icon=”info-circle” font_size=”50px” color=”#e64946″]
The number of sheets is ten times the value of the cutting height. This means, for example, that a cutting height of 0.5 millimeters gives the number of sheets 5. If the manufacturer has only specified the number of sheets, then we have calculated the cutting height accordingly. Thus, 20 sheets give a cutting height of two millimeters. We did not distinguish between different leaf thicknesses.
[/su_note]We have shown the relationship between the maximum number of sheets and the respective price* in the following figure.
Comparison of sheet number Price roller cutting machine

Up to a number of twelve sheets are relatively cheap roller cutting machines. For 20 sheets you have to go deeper into your wallet. On average, the price is about 25 euros. For a cutting height of two millimeters (20 sheets), on the other hand, the price is about 100 euros.

The price range* for lever cutters is as follows:

Comparison sheet number price lever cutting machine

The lever cutters selected as examples tend to be somewhat less expensive up to about twelve sheets.

Paper cutting machine manufacturers

Novus Dahle GmbH & Co. KG (Dahle)

Die Novus Dahle GmbH & Co.KG gehört zur deutschen  emco Group, welche in verschiedenen Bereichen tätig ist. Novus Dahle Gmbh & Co. KG manufactures paper cutting machines, document shredders and flipcharts and also offers fastening technology. Paper cutters are known under the brand name Dahle. The range includes roll, cut, lever and stack cutting machines. These are offered in various price ranges for a wide range of applications. The Dahle 507 roll and cut trimmer  and the Dahle 561 lever trimmer are very popular.


Fiskars is a Finnish manufacturer that offers a wide variety of products. Fiskars is especially known for garden tools. The range also includes  paper cutting machines and paper cutters.

Fellowes, Inc.

Fellowes is an American family-owned and operated company that has been around since 1917. The product portfolio includes office machines, such as paper cutters, laminators or document shredders. Fellowes operates worldwide and also has a subsidiary in Germany.


Ideal is a German manufacturer of paper cutting equipment based in Balingen. In addition  to roll cutting machines, lever and stack cutters are also produced and offered. In addition to cutting machines, Ideal’s products include automatic staplers, paper shredders and air purifiers.

Preise inkl. MwSt., zzgl. Versandkosten / Letzte Aktualisierung am 2023-01-29 at 08:02 / Affiliate Links / Bilder von der Amazon Product Advertising API

This post is also available in: German

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *