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4.02.2009

Making Memories Slice


{reported by Annie Hafermann}



What is it?

The SLICE is the first digital cordless design cutter. It weighs less than two pounds and is less than five inches square. It has a rechargeable battery, so it can be easily toted along and used anywhere. (It can also be used plugged in.) The SLICE is equipped with a VERY easy to follow graphic interface that allows you to quickly and easily select both your design and the size. The SLICE allows you to choose from hundreds designs and gives you the option of sizing designs between 1 and 4 inches in half inch increments. It is said to cut through cardstock, paper, vellum, vinyl, and photos up to .5 mm thick. (I have only ever tried it on cardstock (textured and smooth), patterned paper and photos....all with great success.)

I'm not normally a die cut kind of gal, so I have not been tempted by any of the previous die cutting systems. (Combination of being quickly "out of love" with an embellishment/design element (so could never see myself using a single die more than once or twice) AND the "where would I put it all" factor.) That being said, the first time I watched an advertisement for the SLICE I knew I had to get one. For me, the size was a HUGE bonus (storing a larger system and all the dies is just not in the cards for me.) I also loved the incredible number of designs that comes on each disc. I am a big fan of Making Memories and think their designs are so classic and versatile. The other big selling point was being able to select all the designs in so many sizes.

The SLICE is sold in a Starter Kit, which includes: The SLICE machine, basic shapes 1 design card, 6" x 6" glass cutting mat, 5 blades, blade replacement tool, repositionable tacky adhesive and a power cord.


Designs are stored on small "designs cards". Each card has a combination of alphabets, shapes, and often words and word art. The card is inserted in the back of the machine. amazon offers them from $22-28.

There is an incredibly helpful website called WHY SLICE. It's well worth watching ALL the videos before using your slice. The site also has design ideas and a trouble shooting section.
Please watch the Optimizing Your Paper video (as in, don't even take your SLICE out of the packing until you have watched it!!) I wasted so much paper and got so irritated before this video! I also really like the cutting into photos video.



. .
Supplies: Cardstock: Bazzill, Patterned Paper: Scenic Route and Sassafras Lass, Metal Heart: Making Memories, Die Cutting Machine: SLICE, SLICE Design Cartridges: Basic Shapes 1 and Noteworthy. The title, hearts and journaling spot were all cut using the SLICE!


What I like:
1.) The computer interface is very easy to use. Choosing a design and size are so quick and easy! I really can't be bothered with fiddly processing and quickly lose interest if things aren't "working"....but this really is SUPER DUPER straight forward!! It's really not a biggie to pull it out to cut just one or two things.....it's that easy!

2.) Each disc contains TONS of designs. I feel like I get really get my money's worth. I am thrilled at the idea of not having to buy any more circle/scalloped circle punches because now I can have EVERY SIZE on one little disc. I love that the discs will contain a great balance of basic shapes and fancier shapes...again, feel like it's good value for money.

3.) It's very easy to store and the discs are TINY (again so super easy to store!) I would never have room for a large die cutting machine and accompanying dies. I feel like I have a fancy cutting system hidden away in one small basket...LOVE THAT!

4.) The instruction book is very straight forward and easy to follow (think pictures and diagrams.) I have had to change blades a few times and found it very easy. Tightening the blade is also a cinch.

What I dislike:
1.) I found the 6 inch cutting mat (that it comes with) to be WAY TOO SMALL!! Because you can't move the machine around to maximize paper use, there is too much paper waste and you can't cut into large pieces of paper or photos with ease. Without the 12X12 mat I don't think it's worth bothering.

2.) It would be nice to be able to change the size in increments of 1/4 inch instead of half inch. It would make layering shapes/letters so much better! It would also be great if it started at 1/2" inch instead of 1 inch.

3.) I think the started kit is incomplete. It should include the spatula. Again, I would not bother with the SLICE without getting it....you will never get your designs up nicely if you are digging at them with your fingernail! I also think the starter kit should include a DVD of the instructional videos. There was a steep learning curve for me and I wasted a LOT of paper trying to figure out how to judge where the machine was cutting. Getting the larger mat and watching the videos has made it all a cinch!!!

4.) The blade quality may not be be consistent. The blade my machine came with was bogus (as in loose and wobbly.....but I didn't know that was the problem, so it was a big URGH!!) Then I had a blade that cut for what seemed like forever, then one that only cut once or twice and am now on another that has lasted through tons of cuts. I don't like to make claims about such an important part of the machine based on this very small sample size, but at the same time, I feel obliged to mention that it's been an issue for me.





Supplies: Patterned Paper: Amy Butler for K&Co. Cardstock: Bazzill, Die Cutting Machine: SLICE, SLICE Design Cartridges: Basic Shapes 1 and Noteworthy, Metal Embellishments, Vintage Music Paper, and Ribbon: Misc. The letters, circles, and scalloped circles were cut using the SLICE.


Where and How much:
Product Name: Slice
Manufacturer: Making Memories
MSRP: $149.99
Available at: scrapbook.com, happyscrappin.com, amazon.com*

(*indicates lowest price at time this review was written)

What I Think:
The more I use the SLICE, the more I want to use it! I love it more each time I cut something with it! The ease of use and value for money as far as designs per card are right on for me!!! And it honestly is as easy as it looks in the video!

What do YOU think?
Do you have a Slice? Have you tried the Slice? What kinds of great projects can you imagine creating with the Slice? Can't wait to hear from you!

33 comments:

marla said...

I was lucky enough to win one of these fabulous Slice die cutting machines. I love how versatile it is. The thing I like best is the size and how easy it is to use!! A great machine that will last me for a very long time!!

JennV said...

I am so excited to see this review! You did an excellent job covering all the ups and downs of the slice. I too have never had a need for a die cutting machine but just had to get the slice when I saw it. I have had so much fun with it! I struggled at first with wasting paper and not having a sticky enough mat, but overall my experience has been awesome! I have five design cards and I love how they each come with a font or two and some designs. So versatile! Thanks again for reviewing this cute little machine!

Theresa said...

Okay, so now maybe I've found the die cutting machine for me. I've toyed with whether or not to get a Cricut or a Sizzix or a Cuttlebug or whatever else, but have just not been able to make up my mind, so just haven't purchased anything yet. This sounds like something I would find useful, but that isn't taking up huge space or making me feel guilty because of the price of machine and assorted cards/dies. This might just be the answer to my ongoing question! Thanks for the review!

joni said...

I do not have the slice, but I did watch a demo at Archivers when they first appeared on the market. The lady holding the demo had such a difficult time operating it, that it totally turned me off....but I may have to have another look after your review! Thanks so much!

Joyce D said...

I do not have Slice or any other diecut machine. However, I have been drawn to Slice since it first started advertising. I'm attracted to its size as well as portability. I'll have to watch the demo videos. Thanks for the tips about the larger cutting mat and the spatula!

Jewel said...

Thanks for the informative review! I bought the Xyron Personal Cutting System when it first came on the market and was a bit dissappointed with it so have been very hesistant to get anything else. I feel the Cricut is just too big for me and the design cartridges are pretty expensive. The Slice may be an option for me!

Kim said...

I have wanted the Slice ever since it came on the market. I haven't seen one in person, so I've been a little hesitant(sp?) on getting one. I love the size of it. I have heard that it makes an annoying noise as it cuts, but again I haven't seen one in person.

Nathalie said...

Great review! I love how you brought up your negative findings giving a heads up to any potential user! I am still on the fence about getting one though... Mmmh, but I would take it if somebody gave me one for my birthday... so I am off to amazon to add it to my wish list! ;)

Anonymous said...

i do not have a slice. i would like to see an actual demo though. i would see it coming in handy for my kids projects, loads of cards, and sb pages


lynda in calif

Rebecca W said...

Great review- I haven't decided if I think I will get enough use out of the slice. I do like the portability of it although I have a craftrobo Pro and a cricut expression already. I do like the designs and know that the compact size allows me to think about if I would use this as well.

kgscrapper said...

Awesome Review!! I do not own a SLICE. But I have to admit, I am interested in it. I do own a Cricut and a Cuttlebug. The thought of buying another die cut machine seems a bit frivolous. But I am drawn to it's compact size. Thanks for the info on the 12X12 mat and spatula, I will keep that in mind if I ever take the leap.

Cassi said...

I like the Slice and think it's a good value. However, I am very disappointed with cut quality. My scallops are not consistent sometimes soft, sometimes more crispy, and other times wavy -- very frustrating as all three types of cuts can occur on one piece. I'm also frustrated when cutting 4 of a shape and laying them on top of each other they do not line up evenly, e.g. making the star ornament featured at Christmastime from the Fa La La card.

Carolyn G said...

I recently bought the SLICE & I love it. I am a manic scrapbooker and the idea that I have countless fonts/sizes at 2am when the whim hits was a winner for me. Thanks for the tips on the alternative adhesive and bigger mat. I was somewhat frustrated with them. Also took your advice & watched the videos... duh! what a great help they were. I had no idea what the little x meant before now! Off to save a TON of paper!

PamS said...

I have the slice and it has been so frustrating to use. I have watched all the videos several times each. The design card that I got with the slice does not do all the letters in the size which I picked. For instance, the word "book", I might be able to do the b and o in 2 inch letters but the 2 inch size for the k might only be 1 1/2 inch tall. And the blade...they do need a better tool to work with it. I do think that once they get all the kinks worked out of the Slice, it will be a great machine. The one thing that drew me to it was the size and that it was so portable.

Yaritza said...

I have the Slice. In my opinion it's OKAY. But I do have most of the die cut machines out in the market. Big Shot, Side Kick, Cuttlebug, Expression, Silhouette, The Slice. I guess I'm a little spoiled with the Expression by being able to get up to 24 inches that I find that 4 inches sometimes is not enough. Oh and the 4x4 cutting mat it's so frustrating. I'm looking into trading up for the 12x12 but I just have not made the investment. Thanks for the review. I may have to watch the videos again and see how I can get it to cut where I want it to cut.

sarahau said...

I have yet to use one, but have heard both things its a frustrating machine and its the love of thier lives. aching to get to know someone who owns one closer to home

dina_cpa said...

Thanks for a great review! I just ordered the Slice (a b-day present from myself :)), so I appreciate all the helpful tidbits!

Dina K

Tricia said...

Great review here. I have been interested in the Slice so when my LSS had one on display, I went and tried it out. The store employee was unable to answer many of my questions during her demo. When I tried it myself, I found it to be cumbersome and quite limited. I think the concept is fantastic, but it needs to be tweaked a little more before I would invest in it.

Ann said...

I don't have a Slice, but I wanted to say one of my favorite things about this site is reading all the comments. I have a couple of gift certificates for Joanns that I was going to use to purchase the Slice. I think after reading the comments, I'm going to hold out to see if they'll come out with a new tweaked version.

Emilie Ahern said...

I don't have a Slice, but I wanted to say one of my favorite things about this site is reading all the comments. I have a couple of gift certificates for Joanns that I was going to use to purchase the Slice. I think after reading the comments, I'm going to hold out to see if they'll come out with a new tweaked version.

......................................

I totally agree Ann! I love the comments too. Our readers are just like us and we know they have great experiences to share.

Keep thos comments coming!

SKimsey said...

I have a Slice and I love it. Just to let the readers know...if you have an AC Moore around you, they are 40% this week at the store. I just bought two design cards this week. None of my local scrapbook stores carry the Slice and I don't want to bother with shipping. And in these times, if I can get it cheaper, I will by all means buy it cheaper. I do agree that you can't get the most out of your paper unless you have the 12x12 cutting mat. I had heard a lot of people complain about the application of the glue, but that part was a piece of cake. I don't know why people were so negative about it. I can't wait till the new design cards come out. I really want the US Travel design card. I am sure I will get some others. I really like the designs and the ease of using this tool.

Pegasus said...

It was my husband who convinced me to get one and I do not regret it a bit! He was shopping with me one day for punches and saw their prices. Then I stopped to look at the Slice and we discussed how I wouldn't need to buy the punches and the punches in my hand was nearly half the cost of the Slice to begin with! To us, it was a no brainer. My only negative is waiting for the adhesive to dry...can't find the spray around here.
:0)

Carolyn G said...

It pays to come back & read other comments! SKimsey alerted me to a hot 40% off at AC Moore! I am headed out the door right now t feed my Slice addiction! Thanks my fellow "scrap review friends"!

Anonymous said...

I have been contemplating the purchase of this die cut machine but have held off because I have a hand me down cricut. I have to say that it is a pain in the butt to haul the cricut out everytime I want to use it. I may just invest in this machine for the sheer size of it. Space is a very big issue for me and my cricut has to be put away after every use. Thanx for the wonderful article on the Slice.

Kimberly said...

OH MY HEART! You all are enablers! LOL

Millie said...

This was a very insightful report. I have a baby Cicuit and a Stampin Up's Big Shot as well as a small sidekick and a Cuddlebug....time for a garage sale! I have been looking at the Slice but like the comment above everyone I have seen using it has struggled...maybe its time to look again.

Julia said...

I wanted a slice as soon as I saw it advertised. I now own one and am in general really pleased with it. I have had a few problems with it cutting out the smaller 1" designs as it doesn't always want to do them. I also found the blades are inconsistant, some lasting longer than others. Also I find it doesn't really hold a charge that longso I tend to keep mine plugged in all the time. Over all I think it is a fantastic little machine. I also have a cuttlebug and I think the slice is so much more usable!

cary said...

I think you need to add two points. It works most consistantly when plugged in. Can work for about an hour off the charge... but the cuts get squirrely when its tired. The basic card has some shapes that cut very irregular (1" size only). MM knows about the problem (software issue) and say they will have a fix at a later date. There is a yahoo Slice group that can be a resource with other Slice Users. Mine was a gift and I took a class at my LSS for basic use, so my learning curve was easy. I also have a cuttlebug and I think while the cuttlebug might be easier to use, its designs are limited to 2" and financial the Slice Card designs offer more choices (up to 4" of letters and shapes for each card currently available)

JoLynn said...

Thanks for reviewing this. I had been wondering about it since it first came out. I appreciate your insights.

Anonymous said...

You can use Aleene's Tack-It Over & Over Repositional Glue just like you use the Slice Glue.(use the same directions as the Slice Glue - you can also wet the sponge brush and squeeze out the excess water from it. This will help you spread the glue more evenly when you apply it to the glass. Just use warm water a little soap and the Aleene's washes right off or you can use rubbing alcohol and a paper towel to remove it when you don't access to running water)

You can get the Aleene's Tack-It from www.createforless.com
It comes in 4oz bottles for $2.97 a bottle. You have to buy 3 bottles at once since they sell it in bulk.
(I do not suggest using the Krylon Spray because it does not go on even enough and it can cause the cutting head on your Slice to drag, which could wear out the motor on the Slice eventually)

Also is you need a larger cutting glass mat and if you have a old computer scanner or old all in one printer that is out of date or is no longer functioning (both have tempered glass in them). You can remove the tempered glass plate from the scanner or the all in one printer and use it as your new cutting mat. Buy some stick on rubber bumper feet to use for feet on the glass plate and tape a piece of graph paper to the underside of the glass.
The tempered glass from a scanner or old all in one printer will be thinner glass than the Slice Glass plates but it is tempered glass and if it breaks it will not sliver like standard glass does.

Anonymous said...

Thanks so much for the invaluable comments and advice tips. I have a slice from QVC and am still working out whether to keep it or return it. I asked Making Memories if it's possible to download my own designs through the SD card and they said they're working on software to do this for the future so that will be interesting! I wondered if it would be a bit limiting with the size after I've found a new freedom to design etc but it is so convenient and portable that I just might accept that I've fallen in love with this little baby!
Suzan

Shannon Clattenburg said...

I purchased the Slice machine when it first came out about a year ago, and have never been fully satisfied with the cutting capabilities of the machine.

After quite a few attempts to get it to cut the image out fully, I consulted the place of purchase. They informed me that there was a bug in the original models and that I would have to order a chip to "calibrate" the machine. I put my order in for the chip (it was complimentary), but never received it.

The machine does work about 70% of the time, and when it does... it works great! I just became overly frustrated with the 30% of the it wasn't working, so I stopped using it all together. I find once I run into a roadblock such as that, it kills my creative buzz.

I plan on upgrading to a Cricut in the near future.

Wishing the rest of you better luck.

NV said...

I literally just started using the Slice, after getting a starter bundle deal a few weeks ago.

I REALLY REALLY like it ... so far!
I'm still a little paranoid because of all the issues I see floating around regarding it, but some of those truly are operator error (based on the quick fixes others have supplied via online forums).

I'm still learning to gauge placement to make the most of my paper but other than that, I had mine up and running within 5 minutes! (After, of course, reading instructions and letting it charge for about 2 hours.) Seems to definitely deliver for the price.