Help, how do I stop tearing paper in my Pazzles?!

If you are new to the Pazzles world, join the rest of us with that question.

In the beginning I wasted so much paper it should have been a crime.  It seemed like no matter what I did I kept wasting tons of paper.  I would set the blade at this and a pressure of that and still disaster was near me.  I wanted to throw the machine out of the window.  I think I was expecting the ease of the Cricut cutting.  One thing to note, you had better not use a blade depth of 2 or 3 with a new blade; it will cut through your mat if you’re not using Chipboard or Acrylic.   Yikes!

I’ve been using my Pazzles Inspiration since July 28, 2011, so I am very new to using both the machine and the software.  I took the plunge and bought the Pazzles Inspiration Pro 2010 software and I am kind of happy I did (only because I think there are some glitches. but I hear there may be some updates soon).

Oh, if you just got your machine, be sure to do the firmware and software updates before you start cutting or you will get undesired results.  If you have a new machine and you purchased the Pro 2010 software, do all the updates (there are updates for the Pro 2010 software too).  Once you load your software, click on Help, Internet Pazzles Online, then Software Updates (or something like that, not sure if this is the same way in the basic software.  Just in case, here is the link to the updates for the firmware and basic software updates: Pazzles Updates.

Another thing:  If you have a MAC you will need some way to use the PI software in a Windows environment.  I’ve seen members use VMFusion, or something like that, so they can use their PI Software, so not all is lost for MAC users.

Anyway, here is the lesson I learned: cut out stars for test cuts at the bottom of whatever type of paper you are using.  This will save SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO much paper!  I use stars because of the angles.  If the angles cut good, then all else is a piece of cake.

I basically use three kinds of papers; Michael’s Recollections, Kay & Co. (or K & Co.), and Walmart's ColorBok.  They seem like different weights of paper, but I can use the same blade settings for them.

Anyway, with a new blade I start out with a blade length of 1 and a pressure of 18 for the papers I mentioned above.  For vinyl and a new blade, I start out with blade length of 1.5 and 13.  If I don’t get good cuts, I increase the pressure by two numbers and continue to do test cuts until I get the ease of getting the design off without straggly paper left over.
DEC 2011 UPDATE:  My machine had to be replaced again.  I am now on my 3rd machine since July 2011!  Not cutting on the right side was ONE of the machine flaws.

And…………….you will find that you will have to change the blade length and pressure over a short time because the blades dull very fast (but I cut every day, so it’s fast to me).  One thing I have been thinking about, but have not tried, is what my grandma used to do with her scissors - get them sharpened.  I wonder if that will work with these tiny blades.  Hmmmmm.  Knowing me I would muck them up, but it’s worth a try.  I’ll just go and find my little pumice stone and see how it works.  I’ll get back to ya on that one.

Hope this information helps ya.


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