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Last updated: November 19, 2021

USCutter MH 871-MK2 Review: The Ultimate Cutting Machine?

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By
Reviewed by
Reviewed by
Last updated: November 19, 2021
Crafty Hangouts is reader-supported. We may earn a commission through products purchased using links on this page. Learn more about our process here
Ideal for:
  • Beginners
  • T-shirt printing businesses
  • Craft making and graphic design
Main features:
  • Windows-compatible cutter
  • Adjustable pinch rollers
  • Includes free VinylMaster Cut software
  • Stepper motor with 350 grams force
Editor's Rating
?
CraftyScore is a ranking system developed by our team of experts. It aggregates all the scores given to a product in various aspects including the individual product’s features evaluation given by each expert independently, its customers’ feedback rank, and sales rank.
9.7
out of 10
  • Overall performance 9.7
  • Ease of use 9.6
  • Connectivity 9.5
  • Warranty 9.8
Users’ Rating
4.3
out of 5
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    4.3
    out of
    5
    58 Users’ Ratings
    • 5 stars
      52%
    • 4 stars
      34%
    • 3 stars
      9%
    • 2 stars
      5%
    • 1 stars
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The USCutter MH 871-MK2 is one of the most purchased by hobbyists and professionals as it has great value for money. The cutting machine can process vinyl up to a length of 96 inches. If you like clean edges, a fast work process, and clean results, the US Cutter vinyl cutter will be the most ideal for you.

Today, in this USCutter MH 871-MK2 review, we’re going to take a detailed look at the US Cutter brand’s vinyl cutter. We will show you what the machine, tools, and software included look like. In addition, we are going to give you the maximum size material width that you can feed into it as well as the maximum width that it can cut across a material.

Specifications

Motor type
Stepper
Blade type
Roland compatible
Max cutting width
31 in
Max feed width
34 in
Max cutting length
96 in
Max speed
39 in/s
Cutting force
350 g
OS compatibility
Windows
Dimensions
44 x 16 x 13 in
Weight
47 lbs
Warranty
90 days

Overall Performance

The huge pack includes everything you need to start your own vinyl cutting business. This 34-inch vinyl cutter comes with a stand of its own and includes everything you need to start your business.

This set has received positive reviews from other users over its overall performance. A reviewer said the machine was easy to set up and video instructions can be found online. If you have any questions the customer service representatives are great.

The machine uses Roland compatible blades. Unfortunately, none of the U.S. cutter machines are made for cutting window tint. U.S. Cutter machines are just not built to handle that much static build-up yet. You’ll need a Graphtec with the AKZ tint kit or a rolling machine if you want to cut window tint.

Customers have commented on the quality of the machine in this set. When you look at it closely, you can see that it will last a long time. However, before purchasing this pack, you need to review all the negative aspects. There are a few things you need to be aware of. The software supplied with your cutter is not compatible with Apple or Mac computers. Only Windows 7, 8, and 10 operating systems are supported.

If you have a PC with an older version of Windows like Vista or XP, you could experience some issues when cutting, and USCutter won’t be able to troubleshoot that for you.

Nonetheless, we found a lot of users who say they use it in their graphic design businesses for cutting vinyl, t-shirt designs, drawing school projects, and lay out posters.

The high-quality metal used in the construction of this cutting stand is top-notch. The cutter has features like stored memory which will save RAM on your computer for the last job and then be available if you need to access settings again.

The cutter also includes an LED panel, as well as manual and automatic configurations of blade force or speed.

Design and Construction

The U.S. Cutter machine is a vinyl cutting equipment. 871 is the model and MK2 is the generation of it. With the cutter, you have one cable supplied that goes by USB to the computer. There is a breaker reset and then your main power source that gets plugged into the wall.

You have a full ruler for your vinyl size. You can use either 12 or 24-inch sheets but you can cut up to 34 inches on this machine. Also, you can go roll-wise as much as your paper is.

The machine itself is made of an aluminum frame which is particularly heat-resistant and cannot be deformed. Thus, the material in the blade ensures sufficient stability. It’s better than other models with frames built of steel, which is susceptible to corrosion.

The machine also comes with a three-pack of blades, a blade holder pin tool, power cord, and USB connection cable. So you don’t need anything other than the material to cut to get started.

USCutter MH 871-MK2 Review: The Ultimate Cutting Machine?

The MH 871-MK2 takes up more space than an average cutter but offers excellent cutting performance for those who need to use it often

Workable Materials

The machine can be used to cut paint masks, card stocks, and craft papers. However, where it performs best are on all types of vinyl, from standard vinyl to heat transfer vinyl.

Vinyl is a special type of plastic also known as PVC. The abbreviation PVC stands for polyvinyl chloride, which is simply a chemical substance. From a temperature of 160 degrees vinyl begins to become malleable, which is why it is ideal for floor coverings. Vinyl panels are very cheap as it is a man-made material. It is also resistant to sunlight, water and air, and it is shockproof.

However, asides from the mentioned materials, the tool cannot be used to cut laminates, tints, low intensity, and high-intensity reflective, sandblast resists, as well as un-linered and un-backed media.

Blades

The machine comes with three blades. The blade stays sharp for a long time even though there are still additional blades supplied. Each of the blades will stay sharp even after a year of cutting jobs in a graphic design studio.

Vinyl cutters with cutting blades like the USCutter MH series are tools with a sharp knife that splits the vinyl into two pieces. The lever principle remains the same, but the effort required is much less because the blade helps you. However, this also means that the risk of injury is increased and you have to be even more concentrated at work. Here, too, you benefit from a great deal of time saved.

The big disadvantage of vinyl cutters with cutting blades is the high price. That is also the reason why many hobby craftsmen decide against it and, above all, professionals fall back on the efficient tool.

Size and Weight

The machine weighs 47 pounds and measures up to 44 x 16 x 13 inches because of its extra stand. The right size and weight of a vinyl cutting machine depend on what you use the tool for and what you focus on. If you have to transport the vinyl cutter regularly, for example, because you are laying vinyl at work, then it should have a comfortable weight of less than 15 pounds. If, on the other hand, you only have the tool in your home and you need it a few times, it can be a little heavier. At the same time, however, it also depends on the possibility of storage, because you cannot completely disassemble the vinyl cutter.

How It Cuts

USCutter MH 871-MK2 Review: The Ultimate Cutting Machine?

The machine uses the print and cut technology

The machine supports a feature called contour cutting Trusted Source What is Contour Cutting? Contour cutting is the process of cutting around the outer edge of a printed image in a predetermined shape or following the very contour of the design. It works like this… stickerbuzz.com or what is otherwise known as print and cut. This allows you to load the image into your software and put your cut marks and assign registration marks around the image. The vinyl cutter will then scan these registration marks to get the exact position of everything and then perform the contour cut.

Cutting Size

The maximum cutting width and length are quite important when purchasing a vinyl cutting machine. If you have already bought the pieces of vinyl, you should not underestimate the two criteria. The maximum width is approximately the length of the blade. Ultimately, you can only cut a material that is shorter than the blade. Depending on the model, there are big differences in this regard, but at least a width of 30 inches should be possible. Some vinyl cutters even have a maximum width of up to 20 inches. However, the USCutter MH 871-MK2 has a maximum cutting width of 31 inches, a maximum feed width of 34 inches, and a maximum cutting length of 96 inches.

But is the maximum length important? In some types, you will not find an indication of the maximum length because it is unlimited. Vinyl cutters that can cut lengthways can cut any length. This is possible because, like a band saw, you can push the material steadily backward. This means that you only cut piece by piece and you still have a perfectly split laminate in the end.

Aside from the width, you can’t ignore the thickness either. This means the thickness of the material, which in the rarest case may be more than 15 millimeters.

But what is the thickest material you can cut with an MH? Well, it really depends on the density of it but let’s say if we’re using a premium 60-degree blade, you could probably go as thick as about 31 inches. With the MH, we can’t advise you to put through anything thicker than that.

Here too, think about the dimensions of the material and which laminate cutter is suitable for them. So find out in advance what your preferred type of vinyl is and what dimensions it has. Under no circumstances should you try to cut the vinyl with a smaller or larger tool, as this will only destroy the material.

Cutting Force and Speed

The USCutter MH 871-MK2 has a cutting force of 350 grams and a cutting speed of 39 inches per second, thanks to the stepper motor. The machine has three fully adjustable pinch rollers. So, this means the pressure and speed can be adjusted. It has a dual roller system with balls that feed the vinyl into the machine to be cut.

Software

USCutter MH 871-MK2 Review: The Ultimate Cutting Machine?

The MH 871-MK2 cutter is compatible with the VinylMaster Cut software

The USCutter 34 inches Cutter/Plotter comes with the VinylMaster Cut cutting and design software. VinylMaster Cut is one of the most widely used designs and cut applications for this type of business. Although it also works with other popular software such as Sure Cuts Alot, SignBlaser, Flexi, as well as SignCut Productivity Pro.

OS Compatibility

The software supplied with your cutter is not compatible with Apple or Mac computers. Only Windows XP, Vista, 7, 8, and 10 operating systems are supported. The computer system must have at least 512 MB of random access memory.

Connectivity

The only computer to machine connectivity technology available for use on this machine is USB. There is no wireless technology but a USB cable for connectivity is provided. The machine can plug into a standard wall outlet using a three-prong plug and then the machine will connect to your computer using a USB connection. Unlike this model, the Prism Cut is the only vinyl cutter right now that is currently Wi-Fi enabled.

Ease of Use

The machine comes with easy-to-learn and uses image design and editing tools. Customizing and editing nodes as well as adjusting shapes, welding, and manipulating between paths are quite easy to do thanks to the reliability of the VinylMaster Cut.

You can pick any image up on the Internet and use the image tracing feature on VinylMaster Cut, and it will convert into a plotting file which you can edit further or just cut it.

The machine has a control panel with keypad on the top. The digital readout screen allows you to adjust the speed pressure as well as set the origin point, perform a test cut, and many other functions as well.

Accessories

Everything you need to start making signs, t-shirts, and any other heat press business is included. All Roland blades are compatible with the blade holder.

The Ultimate ClipArt sign minipack is included in this set. It comes with 5 rolls of Greenstar vinyl, each with a different color. There are also two sheets of magnetic blanks, one ultra-clear transfer tape, a hobby knife, and a squeegee.

Price

When you compare the machine with other models of its type, the USCutter MH871 is a much more price friendlier device. While the MH871 costs less than or around $300, models such as the Brother ScanNCut SDX125E costs more. But remember that the USCutter model doesn’t feature a wireless connection nor does it have a scanner or heat press like other models.

Also, a few users mentioned that the machine is almost impossible to be used for large jobs. But, we have to be realistic (considering it’s an under $300 cutter), it’s not a top-of-the-line machine but it does the basic things for a hobby user. However, it still surpasses the expectation of many users. It’s a large machine fantastic machine for cutting decals.

Warranty

Every single MH cutter from USCutter comes with a one-year warranty and an option to extend it to two years at checkout. There is also free lifetime technical support. So even if you have issues after your warranty is up, you can still contact the brand for support, and they’ll help you get to the bottom of it.

Should You Buy It?

The MH cutter from USCutter has been the best value vinyl cutter in the United States for a few years now and it is a great machine to start with if you’re looking to get into the vinyl cutting side of things. So, yes, you should buy it if you’re looking for a good value cutter to start with without digging too deep into your pocket.

Do not purchase this unless you have a machine that has a valid copy of Windows installed and running. It is also guaranteed to run on any version of Windows that is currently being supported by Microsoft.

Key features

  • Stepper motor with 350 grams force

It has a stepper motor with a maximum downforce of 350 grams making it great for cutting indoor and outdoor adhesive vinyl for signs and stickers, heat transfer vinyl, for designing t-shirts, and all types of other clothing. The machine is also great for cutting cardstock as well as cutting paint mass stencils with ease.

  • Comes with VinylMaster Cut software

USCutter includes a copy of Vital MasterCut with every MH. So, you will have software that will allow you to create basic designs and turn pictures and cuttable files using the vectorization tools.

  • Control panel for ease of use

The machine has a keypad on the top of the machine with the digital readout screen that allows you to adjust the speed pressure as well as set the origin point, perform a test cut, and many other functions as well.

  • Adjustable pinch rollers

The MH871 has three fully adjustable pinch rollers along the top and then a wide roller bar across the bottom giving you the ability to place in almost anywhere as well as cutting smaller sized pieces of vinyl.

  • Two ways to use it

You can also sit every single model of the MH on a tabletop if you like. But the stand that comes with it is pretty nice and it has a rack with some rollers to hold a roll of vinyl if you want to feed it in there and cut it.

PROS

CONS

  • Adjustable speed and pressure
  • Comes with a free and easy to use software
  • Can cut standard and heat transfer vinyl
  • Great value for money
  • Ideal for beginners
  • It doesn’t contour cuts
  • It’s not compliant with Apple or Mac devices

 

Conclusion

The only question you need to answer is whether or not you will continue to procrastinate your t-shirt design or signature business that you have dreamed of for years or if you will take this amazing set to get all that you need for your business all at once.

The USCutter MH 871-MK2 review covered everything in the pack, which includes the machine, tools, and software. They not only save you money but also make you have everything you need in one package.

References

1.
What is Contour Cutting?
Contour cutting is the process of cutting around the outer edge of a printed image in a predetermined shape or following the very contour of the design. It works like this…
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