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How to Do a Cut Score on Your Folding Machine

[fa icon="calendar"] Sat, Jul 19, 2014 / by Andre Palko

Here’s a ‘scoring’ technique borrowed from the greeting card industry. It might seem a little old school, but it’s still used quite often, and it’s a great technique to have available when you need it.

cut score diagram325The video below demonstrates how to create a cut score (also called a kiss cut, or semi slit) on your folding machine. The term has a slightly different meaning in the packaging industry, but for our purposes, we’ll define it as a method in which you cut partially through the sheet. The purpose of the cut-score is to create a fold that’s nearly flat. As you’ll see in the video, it makes for cards that lie extremely flat.

Generally, a cut score is used on uncoated paper. For aesthetic reasons it’s usually not applied where there is ink coverage, but I have seen it done. I haven’t seen it used too often on coated paper, but I’m sure there are applications where it makes sense. As long as the visible cut line is acceptable, there is no reason not to do it. Cut scores work best on stocks 7 pt. or heavier.

This technique will work with any Technifold Micro Perforator, Multi Tool or CP Applicator. We’re running this on our “new” 20 year old MBO B123 to show that your folder doesn’t have to be brand new. But it does require a certain level of precision and mechanical upkeep. Our slitter shafts are new and the bushings and fold rollers are in good shape.

If you have any of the Technifold tools mentioned, all you need is one of our cut score blades (a.k.a. kiss cut) to fit in place of your perforating blade. The kiss cut blade has a much smaller diameter than regular cutting or perfing blades, since we don’t need it to cut all the way through the sheet. (Note: because our perforating tool design is different than most OEM tools, these blades are not interchangeable with other devices. They only work on a Technifold product.)

You’ll see in the video that I ran three different stocks. The green 65# cover and yellow 110# index are each about 8-9 pt. The dark blue stock is a Cougar Cover, which is about 14 pt. All of them worked well with the cut score, registering and folding perfectly.

You might not have to resort to cut scores very often, but when you do, you can see that it’s easy to accomplish. It’s an awesome finishing tool to have available when needed. It’s also great to educate your clients about this alternative solution, one which they might not have known about.

Click the video below to watch the demo.


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Topics: Bindery How-To Tips, Folding Machines, Cut Score

Andre Palko

Written by Andre Palko

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