Tangential Knife Cutters

In one of my favorite posts about the Sketch Chair software, there is a video demonstrating the software.  The presenter uses a little automated paper cutter to make a scale model of the chair.  I started investigating the paper cutter and found that they cost anywhere between $150-$250 for the size they used.  That was more than I wanted to spend considering most CNC routers like mine can be fitted with a drag knife and do the same thing for a lot less.

I also remember seeing the tangential knife settings in Mach3.  I pretty much understood how that would work from the name, but never looked into any further.  This time I did some searching and found that the machines are fascinating to watch.  They can cut a lot thicker material than the drag knife machines.  Most of the versions I saw on YouTube also include an “Oscillation” feature to improve the cut quality.  See the videos after the jump.  There are also a lot more on YouTube,

CNC Drag Knife

CNC Drag Knife

Mach3 Tangential Setup

Mach3 Tangential Setup


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1 Response to “Tangential Knife Cutters”


  1. Laser Cutter Adds 3D Printing Capability at Buildlog.Net Blog

    [...] in the works are a tangential knife cutting head, Pen plotter and Dremel tool head.   The entire system is open source and well documented.  [...]

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