Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Stampin' Up! Big Shot/Big Kick Compatibility

Recently I have read numerous questions regarding compatibility among Stampin' Up!'s new Big Shot die-cutting machine and dies & other competing brands. In order to help answer some of your questions, I'd like to present some information to help clarify compatibility with the Stampin' Up! Big Shot.

First of all, let me just answer some very frequently asked questions (VFAQ?):

  1. "Will my my Cuttlebug dies and embossing folders work in the Stampin' Up! Big Shot?" YES

  2. "Will the Stampin' Up! BIg Shot dies work in my Cuttlebug?" YES

  3. "Will the Stampin' Up! Top Note die work in my Cuttlebug?" YES

  4. "Do Spellbinders Nestabilities work in the Stampin' Up! Big Shot?" YES

  5. "Will Cuttlebug Embossing Folders work in the Stampin' Up! Big Shot?" YES

However, keep in mind that there are some exceptions. Remember that while die-cutting manufacters generally try to make their machines as universally compatible as possible, the only "sure-fit" will usually be with the dies and machines made by the same manufacter. For example, it's pretty obvious that any of the Stampin' Up! dies will certainly fit in the Stampin' Up! Big Shot. And because it's manufactured by Sizzix, ANY Sizzix products from other retailers will fit in the Big Shot too! The same goes for Cuttlebug, all Provo Craft dies will fit in the Cuttlebug machine. However, Stampin' Up! Big Shot owners also get the benefit of being able to use just about any die or embossing folder available, including Cuttlebug and Spellbinders.

But, when using a die manufacturered for a different machine, plan on tweaking until you find the right fit. In my personal experience, Cuttblebug dies and folders work perfectly fine in the Big Shot without any tweaking. The Nestabilities dies also cut beautifully in the Big Shot. However, embossing with the Nestabilities requires adding just the right amount of shim to make the embossing crisp. This is just a matter of experimenting until you find the right thickness to make the sandwich work. Once you've mastered this one time, you'll know exactly what you need to do each time in the future.

So, in summary, it's fair to say that for the most part - the Stampin' Up! Big Shot will work with every available die, but just remember that some dies may take a little bit of effort in terms of determining what the appropriate sandwich is. And of course, email me if you has any questions!

For more on die cutting, please check out my die-cutting tutorial.

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