What is a Die Cutting Machine?

Die cutting is making things by cutting, shaping, or shearing a special tool called a die. This tool is made to create the exact shape, design, or pattern you want. Die cutting plays a crucial role in packaging by ensuring precise cutting, shipping, and printing according to exact measurements outlined in a dieline.

To know what is a die cutting machine, you need to know about making die cuts, and you need to know a die, which is a metal tool with sharp edges for cutting. It is like a cookie cutter because it cuts out the same shape in the material as its own shape. There are different kinds of dies. One type is called steel-rule dies, which are super sharp but have plastic or foam around them for safety. 

These are used for cutting thick packaging materials or cutting many layers of thinner material all at once. Then, there are thinner metal dies that are not as sharp and cannot cut really thick stuff. They are lighter and easier to store, and they do not have foam or plastic around them for safety.

Difference between Manual and Digital Die Cutting Machines

Die cutting is carried out using both manual and digital die cutting machines. Manual machines operate by turning a crank to cut the material. The metal die moves through the machine’s rollers, applying pressure to cut the paper according to the shape of the die. Some manual die cutting machines may also feature motors to assist in applying this pressure.

On the other hand, software typically controls digital die cutting machines. These machines don't need steel dies because they have a blade that performs the cutting. The software allows users to select the desired shape, which can be created using a computer, phone, tablet, or even a specialized cartridge compatible with the machine. This software-controlled process offers greater flexibility and precision in cutting various shapes and designs.

History of Die Cutting

The term “die cutting” has its origins in the 1300s, derived from the Middle English word ‘de,’ thought to come from the Latin word “datum,” meaning “given,” as well as “put” or “placed.” Originally, dies were mainly used to cast or stamp metal coins. It was not until the 1800s that mass production of items with similar sizes and shapes became widespread, and the term “die” was adopted to specify that they were “created by machines.” 

Moreover, “cut” refers to creating a customized shape, and die cutting involves the casting and cutting of shapes. The phrase “die cutting” was not commonly used until the 1800s, when it was employed to produce more precise and accurate shoe sizes. Since shoes were crafted from leather, the soles had to be cut by hand, a painstaking process that often resulted in errors and poorly fitting shoes. With the invention of the die cutting machine, shoes could now be manufactured in standard sizes, a convenience we often overlook today.

What is Dieline in the Custom Die Cut Process?

Before you start cutting any printed material, it is important to clearly outline what needs to be cut. This is where a dieline comes in handy in the custom die-cutting process. Dielines play a crucial role in die-cut printing by defining the shape and size of packaging boxes before any cutting takes place. With a wide variety of shapes possible in the packaging world, custom packaging manufacturers can transform materials into virtually any shape imaginable. 

Therefore, If you are unsure about how to create a dieline, you can refer to our guide on understanding dielines to help you with your packaging and printing project. Keep in mind that you will need a dieline before you can proceed with the final touches of your packaging, such as matte and gloss lamination, embossing and debossing, or UV coating.


Know about Different Die Cutting Processes

Several types of die-cutting processes are available, each suited to different needs and product visions. The method chosen for your project will depend on what you require. Some of the most commonly used methods include:

Blanking: This process involves cutting flat material by clipping it from the outer edges, resulting in a flat appearance.

Drawing: Drawing pulls material through the machine to a specific length. It is typically used for thin or long products.

Forming: Forming occurs when raw material is shaped on a curved surface. It is often used alongside drawing to create cylindrical parts for custom packaging.

Coining: Coining involves creating circular holes in the material by applying pressurized force, resulting in intricate designs in packaging.

Broaching: This method employs multiple rows of "teeth” to cut materials the steel die cannot otherwise manage.

In addition to the die-cutting methods mentioned earlier, both digital and offset printing offer various other types of die-cutting. However, the ones listed above are the most commonly used in packaging.

Apart from the different die-cutting techniques, various die-cutting services are tailored to suit different needs. For example, flatbed die cutting, also known as steel rule die cutting, utilizes a flatbed die cutting press and custom dies to create unique shapes. This method is suitable for thicker materials, larger packaging components, or even short production runs.

For larger-scale production runs, rotary die cutting is often employed. This method utilizes cylinder-shaped dies to convert flexible materials into custom boxes or packaging. It is well-suited for high-volume production runs and designs requiring precise accuracy.

Another option is digital die cutting, which operates without the use of traditional dies. Instead, it utilizes lasers, blades, and tool bits to score, crease, and cut the material. Digital die cutting is particularly useful for applications requiring quick turnaround times while still maintaining high levels of precision.

Providing Die Cutting and Other Services to Create Your Packaging Solutions

As demonstrated, die cutting offers a highly adaptable method to precisely cut, shape, and print your packaging, ensuring consistent results that can be replicated without any mistakes. Die cutting delivers accuracy and provides considerable flexibility in designing your retail packaging. At Exact Printo, you can customize your packaging boxes to meet your specific requirements.

Our company provides the best box manufacturing services, including free die-cutting to help you endorse your brand. We also provide other best services with our premium quality of the hemp boxes. For more information, you can email us to get your queries answered. Visit our Instagram page to check out a variety of die cutting boxes in numerous styles and designs.