BIG AND LITTLE PIERCED CHAIN STAR DIE SET - Gina Marie Designs
When using steel dies I like to reccomend for machines that need 2 plastic cutting plates to keep one new and use the other to cut into. Make sure you are flipping the one your cutting into to help reduce the wave that will happen with excessive cutting. Keeping one plate new at all times helps the die not need to flex to two plates and only one. I find you typically get a better cut using this trick!
Plate dies and larger dies with straight edges NEED to be ran into the machine at a slight angle. That means to run them in by a corner first and not flush into the machine. This is very important not only to get a good cut but to keep your machine in good working order.
Believe it or not most cutting machines say to cut with the die facing up. You dont have to do this but if a die is proving a little more difficult it is good to try this. I find it applies the most pressure from the roller to the blade of the die and not the back of it.
Prior to shimming a die if needed try to remove the "outer paper" and run the die back through your machine. Sounds crazy but removing that trash paper can allow you machine to cut down the slightest bit more helping you get a cleaner cut on very detailed dies!
While we still make products in the USA 4 years ago we moved our die production to China. Our $10 dies would have cost $10 to manufacture here so we made sure to pass the savings onto our customers. Please know cost was not the only reason we moved our production to china. It's very important to GMD to test all products prior to selling them and unfortunately while manufacturing in the usa that was not an option given to us. Packaging was not an option either and sadly mold fees made it much harder for us to make a large variety of dies in the states