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Cricut Deep Cut Blade and Housing


Are you a Cricut fan, fanatic, or just curious about Provo Craft’s Die Cut Machine? My review today isn’t about the machine itself, but an accessory called the Deep Cut Blade and Housing. If you need some background information click HERE for a previous review on the Cricut as well as some other die cutting machines.

So back to the Deep Cut Blade… love the name, it just implies mystery huh? No, in actuality this little accessory was created to enhance the versatility and provide more cutting options for both the “Baby” Cricut which many fans call the original die cut machine and for the larger machine called the Expression.

It doesn’t matter which version of the Cricut Die Cutting machine you own, the deep cut blade will work in all machines. The key factor in using this blade is making sure you have the correct housing. The original housing is green and the deep cut blade housing is blue. The configuration of the deep cut blade housing is made to work specifically with the new blade. In the picture below, I’ve got the deep cut blade housing already inserted into my machine.

Here is the exact information from the Cricut website about this little accessory:

By Provo Craft. Slice thicker material with ease! A shorter housing provides greater clearance for heavier materials, allowing you to cut material up to 1.5mm thick.The deep cut blade housing is recommended for:Magnet (0.035″/0.80mm thick) with the recommended settings of
Speed 3 (medium)
Pressure 5 (max)
Depth 6
Multi Cut 4Chipboard (0.059″/1.50mm thick) with the recommended settings of
Speed 3 (medium)
Pressure 4 (high)
Depth 6
Multi Cut 5Stamp (0.0415″/1.05mm thick) with the recommended settings of
Speed 3 (medium)
Pressure 4(high)
Depth 4.6
Multi Cut 1

Well, let me tell you that once I found this particular information on the Cricut website, it was very helpful. As a Cricut owner, I realize that the information given above for settings is really just a guideline, but its a good base to start with. I have to say that my settings vary based on all sorts of miscellaneous factors such as type of cardstock, or how sharp my blade is, or the type of cut I’m trying to do with my machine.

I also wanted to add that there is another significant difference between the original (green) housing and the new (blue) housing. The original has 6 different depth options all based on single digit increments (as in, your options are 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 & 6). The new housing is set up to offer you depths based on 1/2 digit increments (as in: 1, 1.5, 2, 2.5, 3, 3.5 all the way to 6), which should theoretically give you more control. In the picture below, I’ve set the depth at 1.5.

So, what I want to do is share some of the things that I played with after I obtained my housing and blade. The deep cut blade and housing has been on the market for about 5 or 6 months, give or take, but I had been unwilling to spend the full retail of $30. I was ecstatic to finally see it in my local craft store where I could use a coupon. I had managed just fine without it, but I was definitely looking forward to opening up my options and simplifying.

I had finally found a great source for what I considered the “perfect” acetate and I was anxious to see how it would cut with the deep blade. I wanted my own “ghost” shapes and letters, but on my terms. I have posted a picture of a new mat (not too sticky either) and my acetate sheet and the depths that I practiced with. I picked one shape, kept my pressure on MAX and speed on HI for each cut. My circle was cut at 1 1/2 on the George Cartridge (came with the original Cricut).

From the picture below you can see at which settings worked best for this particular acetate. And this is the neatest part! I did not have to use the multi-cut option. If you look closely, even though it cut at depth 2, the acetate was ripping and much harder to pull out. It was much easier at the 2.5 depth.

Here is a picture of some letters and a flower that I cut using the George Cartridge.


Now, my next tests all have to do with “chipboard”. It’s important to note here that I own a Cricut Expression that has the multi-cut option. I have the ability to have my machine cut the same cut several times, giving me the option to cut slightly thicker materials to start with. I liked this option, but to be honest, it was kind of time consuming. What I generally did if I wanted a “chipboard” look was to cut 3-5 cardstock pieces and glue all the layers together.

Below, I’ve got what we all have around the house and usually lots of it – the cereal box. In my case – Special K! I decided to cut a nice easy shape.



Here is the same material but cutting out a letter. As you can see, no problem. Just one pass and the edges are very clean.


For my next test, I went and found the thickest chipboard in my stash. I had purchased it, but had never done anything with it because it was too thick. I believe at some point, I did cut into it to make book covers, but I remember I had go over my cuts a couple times with my craft knife. This stuff is thick!

This next picture is what happened before I found the Cricut website and the guidelines I listed at the beginning of the article. It was ugly and I was getting worried. Both times I attempted to cut a circle, the machine essentially bound up and I stopped it because it made some very unladylike noises!

The picture below is what happens when you can find helpful information. See, much better and a lot prettier. I cut not only 2 different shapes, but a letter too.

*** please don’t mind the marks – thank you to the little kiddos for that****

Here’s a close up so you can see the thickness. In my opinion, this stuff was thick and definitely counts as “real” chipboard. I had my pressure on HI, speed at MED, Depth of blade at 6 and Multi Cut option at 3

Now, I had one more piece of material that I wanted to try. Earlier, I said I had found the perfect acetate, but in my stash I had even thicker acetate. It is too thick for me to use as a card base, and up to this point I couldn’t cut anything with it, so I thought I would test it with the deep cut blade.

Unfortunately, I was not successful at cutting all the way through. It did cut it, but I had to then take my scissors to cut the rest of the layer. It wasn’t bad, but not what I was looking for. What you are looking at is where I took off the protective film and that is why one part is clear and the other part is filmy.


I do have a little something fun to share with one of the shapes I did cut using the deep cut blade and the thinner acetate as well as a chipboard letter. I cut a small purse from the Tags, Bags, Boxes, and More Cartridge and then decorated it.


And a close up of that chipboard. I didn’t distress or cover up the edges so you can see all the layers that make up this particular chipboard. This one had a nice white top layer to it.


I am definitely glad that I purchased the deep cut blade, even more so that I was able to purchase it with a coupon. Overall, I think it did a great job, and of course, I didn’t test it on a huge variety of materials, but rather focused it on the things that I would use my deep blade for – basically thick paper or paper-like products.

One thing to keep in mind is that just like the regular blade, the key component (I believe) is that you have to be able to keep your material stuck to your surface. It doesn’t matter how thin or thick your material is, it won’t cut unless it stays put on your mat.

As I was doing my cutting, I kept a mindset that the regular blade was for “regular” things and that the deep cut blade was for “special” things so I found that I had to keep changing my housing for specific cuts. For example, I cut my chipboard letter, but I wanted a designer paper to cover it up. I wanted to do the same cut while my cartridge was in so I had to change the housing. My thinking is that maybe you wouldn’t necessarily have to change out the housing and blade if you set the depth very shallow. What it means is that you have to have your project planned out and make notes of sizes, depths, pressures, etc. to make the most of your time.

Here are some pros and cons and my final thoughts on this item.

Pros:

  • It does indeed cut deeper
  • Is now available (at least in my area) locally
  • Easy to put in and take out of the machine

Cons:

  • Best results are with the machine that has the multi cut option
  • The blades are very consumable items meaning that if you cut a lot and depending on the materials you cut, the blades will dull quickly
  • I would have preferred that the cutting guidelines were included in the packaging

As I stated earlier, the deep cut blade should be available in you local craft stores, but here are 3 online sources where you can also purchase the deep cut blades and housing.

  • Retail Value for housing and one deep cut blade is $30.00
  • Retail Value for a package of 2 deep cut blades is $14.95
  • Very easy to use (read conclusion)
  • Excellent Value (read conclusion)
  • Rating of 9 out of 10

In conclusion, I’m very happy that I purchased this item. I was excited to see it at the store and am still excited after I used it, but I would not have have purchased it for the full retail value. You can easily find it for much cheaper on line or by using a coupon. The same thing applies to the blades, especially if you are a heavy user. I also have to state that the housing and blade are quite easy to use once you get the quirks worked out with your machine and the types of materials you cut. As most Cricut users would attest, sometimes our machines have a mind of their own. I feel as though mine changes when I change mats and blades. It also depends on the types of cuts you are using too. I would definitely say there is a slight learning curve for new Cricut users; experimenting is part of the process.

Thank you for visiting Craft Critique; I hope that if you have any additional information regarding your own experience with the deep cut blade and housing please share it with all our readers, or if you have any specific question about this item please ask.

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22 Responses to Cricut Deep Cut Blade and Housing

  1. Cristy G April 1, 2009 at 12:21 pm #

    Thanks for the info. Have you had any problem with the match box from Tags, Bags, . . .? When I do it the sleeve is slightly too small when I score it on the lines provided. I have tried different sizes and everything else I could think of. I even called Provo Craft without much luck. Any advice? Help please!!!

    cristygammon@hotmail.com

  2. Youa April 1, 2009 at 12:27 pm #

    Thanks for the article. It is SO timely, I was just talking with friends about trying to cut chipboard, but we were too afraid to try it because we didn’t want to damage our machines. Now I can do it with confidence with the new housing/blades.

    Thanks again!

  3. Rosie April 1, 2009 at 1:30 pm #

    Thanks for your article. I love the Deep Cut blade too.

  4. ~Amber~ April 1, 2009 at 4:36 pm #

    Thank you for the review. I plan on purchasing this blade sometime in the near future so this really came in handy.

  5. Mix-on The Memories April 1, 2009 at 5:27 pm #

    Thanks for this review. I had been planning to buy a deep housing and blade in the near future.

  6. Cat April 2, 2009 at 2:47 pm #

    Thanks for the review on the Deep Housing Blade. I’ve been on the fence on this one.

    I noticed you cut cereal boxes and have seen others doing it as well. Do you know if the boxes are safe for scrapbooking? Acid and Lignin free?

  7. Katie Renz April 2, 2009 at 4:34 pm #

    Hi Cristy,

    I haven’t cut this out recently, but I’ll have to go see and check it out. If this is consistently happening to you, have you tried scoring the sleeve slightly outside the hash marks? I know that there have been times that I score not based on the marks, but rather on the shape (seams) of the item. Does that make sense?

    Thanks,
    Katie

  8. Katie Renz April 2, 2009 at 4:40 pm #

    Hi Cat,

    The boxes aren’t acid free, but if you were planning on using it in a scrapbook, Krylon makes a spray that neutralizes the acid. I don’t think, but don’t know for sure either that there is anything like that for the lignin. From what I’ve read, if you keep it away from photos you should be ok.

    So it really depends on your comfort level. I have a high tolerance for putting whatever I want on my cards and scrapbook pages as long as the majority of my products are appropriately safe.

    Thanks,
    Katie

  9. retiredheather April 2, 2009 at 5:45 pm #

    Absolutely great info. I now know what I want… I have not seen it around yet but I will be looking for it.
    Hugs
    Heather

  10. Anonymous April 3, 2009 at 7:44 am #

    I loved this post.
    Wendy

  11. Jen April 4, 2009 at 12:55 pm #

    Thank you for sharing this information! I’m excited to go buy one!

  12. Susanna April 6, 2009 at 8:27 am #

    Thank you so much for this review (you did a great job) I just bought the housing on Saturday (at HL with a coupin 🙂 and it’s sitting on my desk because I didn’t know what to do with it. Thanks to you review I am going to cut some chipboard!

  13. Sarah April 7, 2009 at 11:32 am #

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  14. Mimmers49 April 8, 2009 at 6:25 pm #

    I have been eyeing the DC blade for a while, but can’t find it in my town. I may resort to buying it online.

    Thanks for all the great info..I would love to cut my own chipboard and acetate!!!

  15. Robin May 18, 2009 at 5:54 am #

    Thanks so much for the info! I have been searching the web all morning, trying to find out if I could use the deep cut blade and housing with my personal cricut. The pictures of projects that you tried were a added bonus! Even your blunders and boo boos’. Now, I am sold on getting the expression. The cricut commercials really don’t do their new product justice,by not revealing how the differences between the Expression and previous Cricuts. I am very thankful for your site and will visit often!

  16. Anonymous May 25, 2009 at 11:05 am #

    BEST indepth review I’ve read. Get Job and appreciated so much. Glad you went and investigated at Cricut’s web site for specs of settings to use and then implemented that in your research & trial. Most reviews haven’t taken the time to do that and post negative reviews off of inaccurate settings on their part. Glad you did your homework. A+ Girlfriend!

    Brenda
    Hastings, NE
    05/25/09

  17. barbara in florida May 28, 2009 at 11:28 am #

    Really helpful. I have some OLD paper (burgundy with gold dots that are raised in a swirl pattern) that I’m trying to use for a layered pointsetta flower. Anybody tried using the deep cut blade on it? The regular blade won’t cut thru the gold part. I even tried laying the paper down upside down so the gold dots were against the mat. That was worse!

  18. Julie November 16, 2009 at 2:21 pm #

    Hi Christy
    Thank you so much for a detailed and informative post on the cricut and cutting, I was searching for advice on cutting acetate (ohp I am using)and it was all here on your blog. I think my blade may need changing and also that I need to invest in the deep blade and housing as I have tried to cut with my expression on a 3 x multi cut and it has not gone through the acetate. Will change the blade and see it that helps
    Thanks again. It is very kind of you to spend the time to share your knowledge

    Hugs
    Julie

  19. Kim April 24, 2010 at 11:33 am #

    Thanks for the great info. I was wondering if you have tried to cut wood veneer with the deep cut blade? My husband thinks that would be an awsome accent to any card or scrapbook page.
    Thanks again I will be using the tips you have provided.

  20. Anonymous June 23, 2010 at 10:02 pm #

    Thank you for your posting on the deep cut blade for the cricut. I was very excited when I purchased this blade but have been disappointed with the performance. I have tried to cut thicker chip board with it several times with no luck. the machine starts to make crazy noises and cuts off the mat. I am going to try the settings you listed and see if that helps. I will let you know.

  21. Schweet Caroline October 21, 2011 at 4:33 pm #

    Thanx Cristy! What a pity it does not work with the Baby Cricut 🙁

  22. Pam March 10, 2014 at 12:50 pm #

    I’ve been reading about the deep cut blade and would like to try it. I have a question though. If you plan to use a chipboard letter and cover it with patterned paper, can you adhere the patterned paper to the chipboard before you cut out the letter? It just seems like that would be so much easier.