A guillotine is a device used for cutting sheets of paper and documents to a required size and producing a straight edge. Guillotines are also known as arm cutters or lever cutters. How does it work?The guillotine consists of a heavy board with measurement aids on it such as a grid or angle lines with a ruler across the top. These measuring aids enable the paper to be accurately lined up before cutting. Some guillotines have clamps or transparent rulers on them for holding the paper in place. Along the side or top of the guillotine is a blade or knife with a lever on the end for cutting the paper. The paper is inserted into the guillotine, aligned using the guides and the cutting arm is pulled down to make a clean cut. Guillotines can cut multiple sheets of paper at a time and allow documents to be repeatedly cut in an accurate and consistent manner Rotary Paper CutterA rotary paper cutter or rotary trimmer is used for trimming the edges of documents and is used for lower volumes of paper than the guillotine. These paper trimmers share some of the same features of a guillotine but instead of a cutting lever they have a circular blade. This circular blade is contained in a shuttle which slides along a rail across the top of the cutter. As the blades are enclosed these cutters are safer to use. Rotary paper cutters can be used to make different types of cuts, perforations or score the paper depending on the blade used. These cutters are more precise than guillotine arm cutters and are used by photographers, designers, advertising agencies and schools as well as general home and office use.