Wednesday, 14 December 2016

Cutting thin dies on a Cuttlebug without a C-plate

Hello my friends, thanks so much for joining me!  today's post is written for my sister, Kerry.  She lives about 3000 miles away on the other side of the country.  She has started doing some paper crafting this year and so I decided she needed a Cuttlebug, whether she wanted one or not, lol (I am the bossy older sister, can you tell? lol)  Luckily, she did want one!  However, it does not come with the C-plate which adapts to the thin dies.  This is fairly new to Kerry and she had never used, or even seen the Cuttlebug before it showed up at her door.

 So, I have done some experimenting and am going to try and show her (and anyone else who may find it useful) a way to shim it up for the thin wafer dies.  Right of the top, I want to say that Provocraft, the manufacturer of the machine, and any of it's distributors would probably recommend that you get a C-plate, and not try shimming it.  If you can, that is certainly the best option.  That is what I use.  Please be careful not to shim it so much that you cannot run it through safely.  So as much as I hate to add a disclaimer, you will be trying this at your own risk.  I can say that I had no trouble with this before I got a C-plate and I have been using the shim all night to do my die cutting tonight, instead of the C-plate.  Pay attention to your machine, if it is too thick, don't try and force it.

I used some heavy chipboard from the back of one of my paper pads.  This is the stiff heavy card found on the back of some pads, not the flimsy card.  If that is all you have, though, you can also make that work, you will just need to layer more pieces together.  I placed a B-plate down on the chipboard and traced around it.  Then I cut out 2 pieces. (After using it for a while, I would suggest that you cut them slightly smaller)

The "sandwich" that I used was first, as always, the A-plate, then the 2 shims that I created (cut card), then a B-plate.  Then I put down a sheet of fun foam.  You don't have to do this, but it is something I always do, especially when I am using an intricate die.  I find it seems to cut better, come out of the die easier and does a bit of embossing at the same time with the dies that offer that.  But this is just a preference of mine and totally optional.  On top of the fun foam, or the B-plate if you are not using the foam, I place the paper I am going to cu.  I place my die, cutting edge down, on top of that and then, finally, the second B-plate.  Then I run it through the Cuttlebug.  Each Cuttlebug may be calibrated slightly differently, so you will have to play with your shims.  You want the fit to be tight because you are using the pressure to cut your paper or card.  BUT, DO NOT TRY AND FORCE IT IF IT DOES NOT WANT TO GO HROUGH! You could damage your machine.

I have found it helpful, whether using shims or  a c-plate, to offset the centre of the sandwich just back a bit, so that feeds more easily into the machine.

If you are using several layers of lighter card to shim, then I would suggest that you tape of glue them together so that they are not sliding around.

I hope that you have found this helpful!  Kerry, I hope this helps, give it a try and give me a call!  I will look forward to seeing some photos of your new creations!

Thanks again, for stopping by!  Wishing you all a wonderful and artful day!


  1. Great post Kimberely! It just so happens, Angela R. from Google and I just had an email convo about the Cuttlebug! I asked her about the wafer dies and what you just described!
    Never thought to use the fun foam, though must give that a try!
    Thank you for your informative posts-always very enlightening! Best wishes to your sis on her new machine-hope she has a blast!
    Happy creating!

    1. Thanks so much Jackie. I am so glad that you are enjoying my posts and finding some useful, you just made my day! I use the fun foam all the time. It really seems to make a difference on the intricate dies


  2. Aren't you the world's best sister? Can you adopt me? :D Love the Cuttlebug and the photos...thanks!

    1. Lol, thanks Win! It's hard crafting together when you are so far apart, but it's so much easier than it would have been 20 years ago! My sister is much closer to you!


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