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Old 03-04-2013, 07:31 PM   #1
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Question Removing parts of rubber stamps

I would like to cut out parts of two Stampin’ Up! stamps to make them more useful to me: the word “friend” from the Just Thinking stamp, and the journaling lines from the Everything Eleanor label.

Does anyone have suggestions of what to use or not to use to do the cutting? (I was thinking of trying cuticle nippers.) Should I cut out the full thickness of the rubber, or remove only what I don’t want to remain? Should I skip this idea altogether? Thanks for sharing your thoughts.
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Old 03-04-2013, 07:52 PM   #2
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I wind up removing certain words or stray pieces of rubber that leave marks on my paper quite often. I keep a little box of single edge razor blades on my desk and push it straight down with both hands all the way to the wood.(Watch your fingers!) It doesn't work well to try a sawing motion and I haven't had much luck with any clippers even the ones made for rubber. But this always works for me. Be sure to save the words you cut off and use them on an acrylic block. I do have to scrape a little extra stuck padding from the wood block after removing the rubber.
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Old 03-04-2013, 09:49 PM   #3
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I use a hobby knife to cut them off. I am assuming you already have them mounted on wood blocks. Leave them as they are and use a hobby knife to cut the rubber completely through the foam. It may take several swipes and don't be afraid to add pressure to them cut. After you have it cut through use the hobby knife again to ease it off the wooden block.

I have actually done this to several stamps and then put the part of the stamp I cut off on the end of the block, if it will fit, and stamp as normal. I have not had trouble with it remaining sticky enough to stick. If you have an issue with that you might want to add a smear of glue to hold it in place.

Hope that helps. I'm sure there are many other ways to do it as well.
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Old 03-05-2013, 02:07 AM   #4
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I do this with a lot of stamps - both with keeping the cut-out part to use later, and some where I'm just getting rid of it.

Since I use all cling-mount, I just take the stamp off the wood block if it's on and cut it with the Tim Holtz scissors with the red handle. Then I can reassemble the stamp on the acrylic block like a puzzle if I want to use the whole thing, or just use the piece of it I want.

If I have one that has a piece that I know I won't use later (a stray apostrophe that doesn't belong, that sort of thing) and it's on an edge of the stamp, I'll just cut out the whole chunk of rubber and cushion and all. If the part I'm getting rid of is in the middle of the parts I want to keep, then I use a single-edge razor blade and just kind of shave off the offending parts. I don't try to accomplish this in one pass - take your time and test the stamp as you go along to make sure you've trimmed it low enough that it doesn't leave stray ink marks.
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Old 03-05-2013, 08:21 AM   #5
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Less drastic (and leaving the stamps saleable if you think you might want to pass them along at a later date) is to just avoid inking those parts of the stamp you don't want. I generally use a little piece of masking tape, stick it over the relevant bit of the stamp while I ink up, peel it off and then stamp.
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Old 03-06-2013, 08:37 AM   #6
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Some of my most used sentiments are ones that I have cut from a larger image stamp. Typically they are SU, though I have a lot of Studio G edited stamps, too.

I've been able to do it successfully by first cutting through the top rubber layer with some very sharp, fine tipped scissors (I think I got them from SU years ago, because they have black handles on them...not sure though). Anyway, after making the cut in the rubber I'm able to go back with scissors and easily clip through the rubber layer. Then I carefully peel the whole thing off the wood stamp. I used to remount on an custom cut wood block (DH is a woodworker so this was readily available!). Now I prefer to put the rubber on fresh cling mount material and put the stamp on a custom cut acrylic block (DH cuts down the cheapie Michael's dollar clear blocks to the size I need.).
I realize that the custom block thing won't be a viable option for most people, but there is no reason that a cling stamp has to be on a perfect sized block, or left permanently on the block like I do. They could easily be stored in an empty cd case or a SU stamp case.

I am not overly concerned about devaluing the stamp or stamp set by doing this. My past experience is that stamps are a diminishing asset - selling them would yield only pennies on the dollar of the original investment. With that in mind, I concluded that I might as well make them as useful as possible and cutting them apart is one of the ways I do this. Just my thoughts on the subject.
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Old 03-07-2013, 04:53 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alice in Md View Post
the word “friend” from the Just Thinking stamp.
That's funny because that is the first thing I did when I got that stamp! I use a craft knife that came with the tool kit for the Cricut. It is a flat tipped knife so you don't have to "slide" it across the rubber, you just sort of push it down and it cuts a straight line. Makes it really easy for me. Like I said, I did this with the word "friend" from the Just Thinking stamp and it inks up and stamps perfectly. I was afraid it would leave an inked up square where the word used to be but it does not...somehow it did not occur to me that the stamping part is raised up away from the rubber so it had no adverse effect whatsoever.
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Old 03-13-2013, 09:17 AM   #8
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I use mostly unmounted and clear stamps. So I do this alot. Not only to remove a word but also to stack 2 or more sections of a long phrase. I used the Tim Holtz scissors made for cutting rubber. Or if the words are really close together I use a really sharp blade in my exacto(sp?) knife.
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Old 03-13-2013, 11:39 AM   #9
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If you are working with a wood-mounted image and are having difficulty, put the whole thing in the microwave for 10-12 seconds which will looses the adhesive enough for you to remove the stamp from the block. Then you can use a scissors (except in the tinniest of spaces where an exacto knife will be better) to cut out the parts. I remove all sentiments from images to give me more versatility.
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Old 03-13-2013, 12:29 PM   #10
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I used to never cut mine apart. Then I cut them apart quite a lot. Now I fall in the middle and I'll tell you how I decide. If I never want to put them back together, I cut them apart, no problem. If I just want to use a single word or part of the sentiment, I use tape and mask off the unneeded words while inking then remove the tape and stamp (make sure your stamp is very clean first). If i want to realign a sentiment from straight to multiline or multiline to straight, then thats harder and therefore harder to decide what to do.

If I want to stamp more than once (making multiples), taping is not an easy method to use so then I have to decide what I want to do based on how patient I am feeling and how badly I want this stamp to stay intact. Some stamps are harder to realign that others. Stamps with descending letters on the top line that you cut around actually make the stamp easier to put back together if the sentiment is more than one row of text of course.

Ultimately, if you will use the stamp as is a lot, don't cut it unless it saves you a ton of time stamping multiples. Otherwise you will waste time later putting it back together over and over again.
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Old 03-13-2013, 12:35 PM   #11
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I use the Tim Holtz Tonic scissors to cut and trim stamps. Love them!
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Old 03-13-2013, 12:44 PM   #12
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Yep! Cut them up all the time. Just be sure to count your fingers before and after you cut! In case you have to sift through the rubber pieces! LOL
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Old 03-13-2013, 01:12 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rebecca Ednie View Post
I used to never cut mine apart. Then I cut them apart quite a lot. Now I fall in the middle and I'll tell you how I decide. If I never want to put them back together, I cut them apart, no problem. If I just want to use a single word or part of the sentiment, I use tape and mask off the unneeded words while inking then remove the tape and stamp (make sure your stamp is very clean first). If i want to realign a sentiment from straight to multiline or multiline to straight, then thats harder and therefore harder to decide what to do.

If I want to stamp more than once (making multiples), taping is not an easy method to use so then I have to decide what I want to do based on how patient I am feeling and how badly I want this stamp to stay intact. Some stamps are harder to realign that others. Stamps with descending letters on the top line that you cut around actually make the stamp easier to put back together if the sentiment is more than one row of text of course.

Ultimately, if you will use the stamp as is a lot, don't cut it unless it saves you a ton of time stamping multiples. Otherwise you will waste time later putting it back together over and over again.
Anther idea is to use a marker and a stamp positioner. That way changing from a single line to multiple lines is easier AND keeps the stamp in tact The taping thing seldom works for me as I either forget to remove the tape (duh!) or I want to emboss and the residue from the tape collects embossing powder (ugh!).
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Old 03-14-2013, 04:23 PM   #14
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I've been cutting apart stamps for years. Makes them much more versatile. You can use one word or stagger the words to fit into a space smaller than the entire stamp. I use KIA scissors or if the words are really tight to each other or another image I use a paper snips that is dedicated only for sticky stuff. When I do cut them apart, I make sure that I don't trim anything off in between the cut surfaces so that I align them perfectly. Has worked for me. Hope this helps.
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Old 03-15-2013, 11:41 AM   #15
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For me it depends on the type of stamp. If it's cling or clear, cutting it up is an easy choice since lining the pieces back up to use again is so easy. If it's wood mounted then it is harder to decide and I would probably only cut if I knew I would never use it whole.
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Old 03-16-2013, 02:42 PM   #16
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I quite often separate images from words or split greetings or verses. If they are wood mounted I use a craft knife and cut straight between the images. Then gently lift the image I want to remove and if it is small enough I place it after trimming on the end of the same block. If it is too large for this I treat the set as a double mounted set and simply put it on the other side of the block trimming it first.
Remember to always cut in straight lines to prevent compromising the foam mounting on the back of the rubber or you may not be able to get a perfect stamped image.
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