Thursday, August 26, 2010

sponsored review: AccuQuilt GO! cutter

sponsored review: accu quilt GO! cutter
disclosure: this review is in exchange for the cutter & 3 dies

 Back in June I was contacted by AccuQuilt.  They offered me a free AccuQuilt GO! Fabric Cutter along with three dies in exchange for a review of their product.  To be honest I was skeptical at first.... of the "free" part and of the cutter itself.  Those who know me... know that I'm a ruler junkie!  But in the end after a phone call with AccuQuilt I agreed to try it out.  So here is my experience and honest opinion of the GO! cutter.

 fyi...
 You will have an opportunity to enter to win a GO! fabric cutter next week courtesy of AccuQuilt.


I got the cutter a few weeks ago and immediately put it to work.... writing this review however took a bit more time... as i don't like to write! ;-)


AccuQuilt does have a large amount of YouTube videos to help guide you.  I suggest starting with the ones on how to mark your die and cutting tips.

video by accuquilt on marking your die


fabric cutting tips video by accuquilt


my experience

I had my choice of dies.  My first choice was the hexagon die since I am after all a hexagon junkie.  My second choice was the drunkard's path die since if this cutter was going to work... I wanted a die that wasn't as easily replicated with a traditional ruler.  The third die was recommended to me... the 2.5" strip cutter since it is one of their best selling dies.  I should have spoke up and said I don't want that one... especially since I don't do 2.5" binding but I didn't.  {My mistake}

I received the cutter & tested out a few things with it.  Overall I'm happy with the product.  I found a lot of success with the hexagon & drunkard's path dies and i'd recommend them.  There is a small learning curve with this machine and it does take some muscle to get the dies through.

Unfortunately I have not been happy with the results from the 2.5" strip cutter.  I watched most of the YouTube videos by AccuCut to see if I was doing something wrong, but hadn't found an answer.  Fabric is moving and it is very hard to get through the cutter even with one or two layers of fabric.  I did notice that the blades appear to be leaving much deeper marks on the cutting mat than the ones left on the same mat from the drunkard's path die.  I don't know if there was a defect with my die, or if this die is just harder to use because the blades are straight?  I contacted AccuCut and they sent me a replacement strip cutter die.  I had more success with the second one but still found it much harder to get through the machine than the other two dies.  Despite getting the second die to work I wouldn't recommend this one.  With the prep time I found that in the end it was quicker to cut 2.5" strips with a traditional ruler and rotary cutter.


Here are some photos of me testing out the Drunkard's Path-7" Finished Die

mark your die...

cut & press fabric
i used a piece 17" x 36" {basically 17" x WOF with the selvages off}

after you run it through sometimes the fabric sticks to the mat

and sometimes you have a thread or two to cut where the blades come together

but with careful planning there is little waste

and each 17" x 36" piece yielded 8 inside curves and 8 outside curves


sometimes threads get stuck in the die

but you can usually get them out easily with a lint roller

in very little time i had cut my pieces from many different fabrics



Here are some photos of me testing out the Hexagon Die



i decided to use a charm pack with the largest hexagon on the die

and it worked very well!

although i'm still not sure what i'm going to make with them now

the middle hexagon size is also perfect for 1" paper pieced hexagons

which has been very handy


so to recap...

1. Do the prep work!  Iron your fabric and cut it to the appropriate size for the best results.  We all like things to be fast... but skipping these steps just results in headaches.  Planning also = less waste!
2. Use a sharpie and mark your dies.  After doing this run a piece of "junk" fabric through as some of the ink from marking transferred onto the first fabric I cut with the die after marking.
3. Watch the YouTube videos.  They really do help!
4. Look to purchase the Applique, Classic or Geometric designs and skip the strip dies.


don't forget...
 You will have an opportunity to enter to win a GO! fabric cutter next week courtesy of AccuQuilt

8/27 Update!
I made a step by step tutorial for making a drunkard's path quilt with the AccuQuilt
It's posted on the swatch & stitch!

I also made a video for you!


49 comments:

April said...

Thanks for the review! I had a friend tell me I should get one of these, but I too was skeptical. I *LOVE* my rotary cutter, but I can see how this would be helpful for cutting circular or other more complicated shapes.

Tere said...

Awww I love my 2 1/2" strip die! I think it works great. Maybe you got a couple of junky ones?

Thanks for the review. I want the drunkard's path die now!

Hooptee said...

Thanks for an honest review. I've been seeing these things everywhere and have been skeptical too. Good to know how they really work!

chq said...

I need one of these, I really really do. I'll come back for the contest!

It's good to know that you are happy with the hexy and d/path. Those are the ones I'd pick as well.

JMNech said...

I received one for Christmas and I must say that it is not gathering dust. Thank you for the review... it does take planning.

The Tulip Patch said...

I really respect your honest review. Lately I feel like I have been seeing so many bloggers I like "selling out" over a freebie. It's so disappointing! If I did ever buy one of these I know I'd go for a strip die so thanks for letting me know to skip it!

Tammy said...

Thanks so much for your honest opinion. I have been contemplating getting one of these and this is very helpful.

Kathryn said...

Thanks for the honest review, Julie. I can see that it isn't for every job, but has it's strong points. Kathie L in Allentown

Natalia from Piece N Quilt said...

Very interesting Julie! I am actually getting a GO! also and I was curious to some of the ins and outs! :)

Katie B. said...

Thanks for the review, Julie! I, too, appreciate the honest assessment.

Mommy Songe said...

Thanks for the honest review, I am happy to hear true feelings about a product!

Caroline ~ TrilliumDesign said...

Thanks for the review - it's good to hear the nitty gritty honest reviews. Still looks like a good product overall. Sounds like you have to be choosy w/ the dies. Thanks Julie!

Little Bluebell (Adrianne) said...

Thanks for all the pictures!! I felt like I was right there with you. The hexagons look awesome. I was thinking about that strip die too, but I'm pretty quick with my rotary & ruler. I do have my eye on the Robbing Peter to Pay Paul die. I LOVE those quilts. I like the idea of the notches the dies cut so you can line everything up.

SarahB said...

Thanks for your honest review! I don't think I'd want the strip dies either - seems like it would take longer to get things cut that way and they would tend to be off grain. But it's very intriguing for replacing template cuts!

Trisha said...

I am glad you have confirmed what I thought. That if I got an AccuQuilt I would want shapes I can't cut easily with my ruler and rotary cutter. Thanks for the honest and informative review.

natalie. beyond the reef said...

Thanks for the step by step pics, too!

Stray Stitches said...

Thank you for the review. The two videos you included will help when and if I finally get to purchase or win a GO!

Sandy said...

Thanks for being totally honest...I knew you would be!! Some of the others that are doing this have just been gushing with enthusiasm....we want the pros AND cons!

mascanlon said...

Thanks for such a balanced review Julie. I might think about this now for hexagons and some of the more complicated cutting blocks. And the pictures are really helpful!

Stormy Days said...

Thanks for the honest review. I have a GO and I have found that the 2.5 strip cuts deeper than the other dies. This morning I used the 1.5 and had a hard time cranking it. I haven't run into that with any of the other ones. I do love the applique dies and the circles.

momto2wasd said...

I originally thought I'd want the 2 1/2 inch die, but then I realized that since I have limited funds, I'd want to buy dies that are things that are time consuming to do w/out the AccuQuiltGO. It's good to know that you still find it to be a very useful tool!

stefanie said...

Don't give up on the strip dies. Those are my favorite and for me, very easy to use. I can get my binding cut in a flash.

karenfae said...

I have wondered what they are like - seems weird that the strip one was the one that didn't work well - but to me those are easy to cut - it would be the weird shapes that I would want.
Karen
http://karensquilting.com/blog/

Petit Design Co. said...

thank you for including some of the small cons. Kike having to snip a few threads, and your issues with the strip cutter. This is the first honest review I have seen.

Kenton and Marianne Ogg said...

Those Hexies are soo tempting! I'm a junkie for Hexagons too! I'm so glad to see this review! Thanks for your time in writing it up. See you for the drawing next week!

paulette said...

I love the GO! that I received and my favourite cutter so far are the strip dies...LOVE them!! I cut 1 1/2 "strips for two quilts in just over an hour!! It would normally take me two days to do this...I have arthritis in my wrist and thumb...no problem!! Maybe if you use yours more it will be easier to go through...just a thought!! Take care!
Paulette

Sinta Renee said...

Thanks for doing the test drive... I am not a gadget girl, so I would be slow to embark on the GO otherwise! Thanks for your honesty too! It does seem like a wonderful tool for those unique shapes.

Patty said...

Very clear and honest review thank you.

Kelli said...

Thanks for the review Julie, I have thinking of getting one of these for my Mum, She has hand problems and can't hold a rotary cutter. Thankyou for being honest about the dies.

Val Miller said...

Julie - I love that you were totally honest about the product!! I have been very skeptical myself ... and being honest, good and bad helps people make smart choices!!

SewCalGal said...

Great post. On your 2 1/2" die are you using the original opaque mats or the newer light grey mats?

SewCalGal
www.sewcalgal.blogspot.com

Barb said...

I really enjoyed your review. I have used the 2 1/2 strip cutter and found I didn't have a problem at all....but I am glad that you were honest.

Thanks again,

Becky said...

Excellent review! Thanks for the recommendations especially marking the die and watching the videos. Take care!

Barb said...

Cutting strips doesn't get much easier than with ruler and rotary cutter! I really want a GO! for applique and the more difficult to cut shapes. Thanks for one of the best most honest reviews I've read :)

WoolenSails said...

I enjoyed seeing an honest review. I have arthritis and using the rotary for long periods, is getting too much for me. You mentioned it was hard to turn? Is that with six layers? Also, how do you feel the edges are, after cutting, are they as nice as ruler cut or more rough?

Debbie

Mary on Lake Pulaski said...

This is the best review of the Accuquilt Go cutter I have read. No one else said that you need muscle to crank them through. Makes sense to me to only buy dies that are more difficult to cut with a rotary cutter and ruler. Thanks Julie and I'll be back to try to win one!

RETRO-fabulous said...

Thanks for your honest opinions. I won a GO! Cutter not long ago. I was thrilled with the results of the 2 1/2 inch strip die and am happy I chose it. It's ideal for creating kit quilts for charity. Anything that can reduce prep time and get me on to piecing is good with me.

*BONUS* the cuts are precise, even with constant interruptions from the kids and I don't worry if I happen to leave it out like I do with my rotary cutters.

Happy Quilting,
Heather

Amanda said...

I m so glad to see an honest review of this product. Grad school means money is tight, and I hedge back and forth between getting one or not. It's good to know what dies are great, and what are easier produced with my rulers. Thanks so much!

Mini MNM's said...

Thanks for the review. I haven't seen one that is honest like this is!
babyfickas@gmail.com

angela said...

yes - great job on the review - very engineer like :)

Leah B said...

This looks awesome. Thanks for the giveaway!

Vicki @ DottyJane said...

Thanks for your honest opinions. I was wondering about cutting strips with it. I also love your tutorial for the Curve Master foot. It certainly beats all those pins!

lips said...

Thank you for the great review - I know it takes time to do this, but I for one really appreciate it!
Colleen

a.niza said...

thank you for the review, now an AccuQuilt will be on my wish list.. LOL

OkayLetsGoKnitting said...

Thanks for the great review.

jojo's circus said...

Honesty is the best policy and I LOVE the fact that you were, as with all technology somethings are great and others not so

thanks so much for giving it a go..it makes the decisions a whole lot easier for the rest of us and I want a drunkard's path quilt NOW!!

Meghan said...

My jaw dropped when you started piecing with the curve master. That is amazing!

Cheryl Arkison said...

Accuquilt is doing a good thing with this promo - honest opinions matter. Very tempted, only because of the notches on the curved pieces...

Lisa said...

I own a patchwork shop in New Zealand, I have the Accuquilt Studio and Go Cutter for hire and several different dies. I haven't had a problem with any die and find it a breeze to roll through, no muscle at all? We use the 2.5" strip die all the time to make up our own Jelly Rolls, ours have several strips per die which is obviously way quicker and have very little wastage. I have had a machine sitting in the shop for sale ages and surprised that nobody has brought it (probably the price!) but once you had one you wouldn't be without it, especially for shapes like circles and other applique dies.I think the Go Cutter is fabulous!