DBL PHOTOGRAPHY BLOG

Images from life and things that intrigue me

Dahle 444 Rotary Trimmer

I recently purchased the Dahle Model 444 Rotary Trimmer for use in cutting out prints.  While not cheap, it really does a great job. The Dahle 444 has a cutting length of 26 3/8" which provides a lot of flexibility in sheet sizes. The initial goal was to have a way to cut multiple prints from a single larger sheet.  As an example, I can get 4 - 6" x 9" prints from a 13" x 19" sheet of photo paper with a 1/2" border.  I really liked being able to get really crisp edges on all my prints doing it this way.  As I became comfortable with this process, I ended up doing the same for single prints onRead More smaller sheets of paper.

To make this work, I created a set of templates in inDesign (and Photoshop) that provided a 1/2" or larger border around the image and cut marks outside of the print area.  Depending on the paper and image size, you either have the ability to cut the edges of two prints at the same time or have gutter space with extra cut lines to give a little fudge room.

Once used to the process, I find that it just adds extra steps having the gutter space, since you then have to cut the other side of the gutter.  More forgiving, but more work in the process.  With that said, I suspect as I work with larger sheets of paper and print sizes, it will make more sense to insert the gutter, since the prints will be easier to work with.

Using this process provides an incredible amount of flexibility and control over the use of paper.