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What are some options for trimming my laminated documents?

Jeff McRitchie posted this on Jul 8, 2015

Laminated documents are easy to produce. But what happens if they’re surrounded by excess laminate? Don’t fret because you can trim the film to make your work look better. Here are five methods for trimming laminated documents.

  1. A rotary trimmer. If you want to quickly trim your documents and make sure the cuts are perfectly straight, use a rotary trimmer. These cutters are easy to use and cut cleanly so your Swingline SmartCut Commercial 18" Rotray Trimmer 9618document won’t have any ragged edges so long as the blade is sharp.
  2. Scissors. Chances are you have a pair of scissors at your disposal. If you lack another kind of trimmer, you can definitely use the scissors to trim your laminated documents especially if you used thinner film. If you do use scissors, slide them through the laminate – don’t open and close the blades. This will give you a smoother cut.
  3. A craft knife and straight edge. If you need a perfectly straight cut, use a craft knife and straight edge. The straight edge will keep the document perfectly flat so you can cut without any problems. You will need a cutting mat to use these tools so you can protect your work surface. Also, be careful–it’s very easy to accidentally cut yourself with a craft knife.
  4. Zippy knives. These cutting tools fit right in your hand and are used like a letter opener. Zippy knives are safe to use and they allow you to trim excess laminate quickly. These knives are great for irregularly shaped documents but getting a straight line with them can be tricky. 
  5. An automated laminating trimmer. Most of the suggestions listed already are perfect for small amounts of documents. However, it you regularly crank out a lot of laminated items, consider getting an automated laminating trimmer. Using this type of machine will save you a lot of time and make your documents look great. There are even devices that can laminate your document and trim the excess film in one step. Be sure to consider an automated laminating trimmer if it sounds appealing and can fit in your budget.