Silhouette Cameo blade problems…and mat problems…again!

Okay, so I sound like the proverbial broken record, but I’m still having blade problems with my Silhouette Cameo.

It’s such a love-hate relationship! I love what the Silhouette Cameo can do WHEN it does it. And I hate the fact that my Silhouette Cameo still has major blade problems.

Cleaning the blade: Yep, I use a straight pin or needle regularly to clean any paper debris from around the blade.

Blade settings: I have tried every combination of blade settings and papers. I have tried praying for my Silhouette Cameo. But, alas, I have been out-stmarted, again, by that fickle machine.

What I don’t get is why it works like a charm for a week and then,

it just won’t make clean cuts on anything.

The cutting mat: Argh! The cutting mat just doesn’t hold any weight of paper. Everything slides around, making the cutting mat completely useless. Now, I have to tape every sheet of paper and cardstock to the cutting mat and watch closely during the cutting process to make sure the paper goes through smoothly.

If you are having the same or similar problems, please, please, please, leave me a comment so I can share it with my readers. 

I leave you with one final word: Help!

74 thoughts on “Silhouette Cameo blade problems…and mat problems…again!

  1. I realize your post is from several years ago, but we recently were googling Silhouette issues and came across your post.

    First, the Silhouette mats are garbage. Buy a Cricut Standard Grip mat and use it with your Silhouette. I believe there’s a slight difference in paper placement, but try first with a scrap piece. When the Cricut mat loses its stickiness, wash with Dawn soap, water and a mesh scrubbie. Let your mat air dry. If the cleaned mat isn’t sticky enough, use Zig Memory System Two Way Glue Pen, Jumbo Tip (at Amazon for $7.60) and cover the entire mat. Your mat will be like new. I used to buy a mat every month until I used the Zig glue. It actually works great!! Hope this helps 🙂

  2. I just recently got my cameo, and went to do my first cut today, and it will not move up and down to cut. it goes through the whole process smoothly, but the blade itself isnt even moving up and down. i have all the setting right, i have it on cut edge and everything. PLEASE HELP.

    • Kinda late but next time turn off your silhouette and physically move the whole moter with both hands all the way to the end of the carriage six times back and forth. You may want to take a qtip with a little bit of oil and run it along the metal glide the motor sits on before you run it back and forth. That will clean it and oil it also. I was have a problem with mine doing cuts diagonally across my page and that fixed it! It didn’t seem to be picking up the blade either

  3. Hi, I’m very new to using the silhouette cameo. I use the COLORBOK cardstock and after using it for the 2nd time, my mat is cut through. I use level 4 for the regular cardstock and level 5 for the textured ones. Is this normal? I’ve already gone through 2 mats! I thought you can reuse it over and over again. Am I doing something wrong here? Also, I can’t seem to understand how the measurement works. For example, if I wanted certain things to be 2in tall, when I select the measurement to be 2in, it doesn’t come out to be 2in. One last thing, after I’m done cutting, when I try to take the paper off the mat, it’s so sticky that it just rips. And I’m having hard time taking all the little pieces of the papers off. Please help! TYIA 🙂

  4. This thing is driving me nuts the blade keeps breaking i just spent 12 bux for a new blade and on the first go it broke.. i don’t know what I am doing wrong im following the settings on the machine and everything it sucks the mat in and turns it and just goes nuts I uninstalled the software and reinstalled and I just can’t figure out what the problem is i even got ALL new blades and mats.

    • Just returned this piece of crap today. Bought it and instantly had problems with the belt skipping. I then tried to cut some simple designs on the cutting mat and it starting shifting around everywhere. Good riddance, biggest piece of garbage I have ever bought.

  5. Hello, I have a Cameo and just ordered a Replacement Blade, it’s been working perfectly for a whole day, but today i open it up to clean it out, and when i close it back up it’s stuck on the size 3 and i don’t know how to get it to move at all to different sizes! PLEASE HELPPPP!!!

  6. Hello, I have a brand new Cameo, but the problem I have is that my cameo is not running well. Starts cutting just for a second and then stucked on the same place for a seconds and continue running, also makes a really strong noice (Because is stucked on the same place). I need to work in my son Communion favors, for the next week, I really needs help! Thank you very much for your time! Muchas gracias.

    • I am having the same problem. I have used it almost daily for two weeks, and now today, I am cutting out 2″ squares. It gets to the edge of the paper and does the little grinding noise and stalls. And doesn’t cut the last square quite right. I was sooo in love with this machine. There HAS to be an answer!!!

      • I have had this same problem. Machine worked fine for months and then starts to cut, then mat and cutting head “gets stuck”, machine makes a loud grinding noise, then when it starts back, it’s cutting completely out of sync with the design! I thought it may have something to do with the mat, so I started cutting from the opposite end – and that appeared to solve the problem, but it seems to now be recurring. Really frustrating because otherwise I am so in love with this machine!

        • I’m having the shifting problem too! its sometimes the mat isn’t being held on tight enough by the rollers and goes crazy – or the next time i hear the grinding noise, then it gets off kilter and resumes cutting but finishes the cut in a different area !

          • I just started having this same issue with my cameo. I love this machine. I use it for so much. I have cleaned everything, checked everything, and even begged it to work right. It cuts, stops and makes a clunking noise and a stutter cut, then starts cutting again but not on point to the image. Does anyone know whats going on or a solution?

  7. im really starting to hate my cameo, i have wrote back and forward to sillhouette america for 3 months and am now doing the same with the online company that i bought it from, i have tried again and again all the settings and instructions that they have replied and still i cant get a decent cut from my cameo, it hasnt worked from day one. im really dissapointed with the machine and now wish i could just get my money back, i had high hopes as im a graphic designer but it just seems useless, im trying to cut 210 gsm card, i wish i could just get it to work, what a waste of 350 pounds, im on designer edition. i have now came to the point where i am asking for the machine to be replaced.

    • I too have a love-hate relationship so much so I wanted to throw it against the wall and stomp on it. LOL. I hate that I waited almost 5 years to get one and this is such a disappointed. I can get it to cut vinyl, but it shreds all of my paper. I’ve had it since January and still very disappointed with this.

      • Hi, Tiffany,

        You are not alone in your frustration. So many of my readers have written to me about problems with cutting vinyl. Have a look at this article that I posted last year: Silhouette Cameo: working with vinyl. It should solve your problems and put a smile on your face, once again!!

        Let me know how it goes.
        Good luck!!


        • Thank you for taking up this issue so that Silhouette will not think these problems are the fault only of the users. I was having such a good time teaching myself and buying classes and today my joy feel apart. I had not thought to clean the blade which may mean I can go back in a moment and it will be fixed. These mats are so incredibly sticky at first that they are almost too hard to use, but just as happened to you, mine is now sliding around. What makes me particularly crazy is that is was ok though one cut and then went haywire. Cleaning makes sense, I hope that’s the answer, otherwise, this company needs to find new solutions or they will have many unhappy people saying it just isn’t worth it.
          thanks and good luck

  8. Hi My cameo was working quite well until 2 days ago,I turned it on and the blade kept popping up and down on the left hand side where it starts,thats without anything in it or any settings,than when I choose a file and load cutting mat it just goes through it out the far side and nothing cut,can anyone help please

  9. I have a cameo that refuses to cut paper. Card stock no problem at all, in fact i love it when it……….. When using card. But paper no, the blade mashes everything up and the mat just welds its self to the paper. I’ve wasted loads of paper and time just trying to get it to cut. I even have it on blade setting 1 because at 2 it was also scoring the mat. But nope, no paper cutting at all…..

  10. I am so past the point of irritation….I’m ready to throw my silhouette cameo out the window or at the least take a hammer to it. I got my machine about a year ago and it’s never cut right. I had it boxed up for a long time because of my frustration. I recently got it out and I’ve already gone through a new blade in one sitting. Seriously?? At $12-$15 a pop this is ridiculous. After paying $300 for the machine and having this much trouble with it just blows me away. I can’t buy a $12 blade everytime I want to cut a sheet of paper. What I can’t figure out is that a blade you use in a carpenter’s knife stays sharp for what seems like forever…but none of us can get a silhouette blade to last longer than 5 minutes. I feel like I just got duped into buying this machine with nothing but uncut paper to show for it. 🙁

    • Hi, April,

      Ah, I hear you. Believe me, you are not alone in your feelings of frustration. But, I promise you will fall in love with your Cameo!
      Let’s see what we can do, together, to get you past the nightmare stage and into the dreamy, wonderful world of Cameo.
      First, if your blade did not cut right from the get-go, then there are two possible reasons: 1) you got a defective blade; or 2) your blade tip has broken off. If you received your Cameo with a defective blade, like thousands of Cameo-owners, then you are entitled to a new blade from Silhouette America. Give them a call and explain your situation and they will send you a new blade. if, on the other hand, you were able to make at least one clean cut with your blade and then you began to have trouble, then you likely chipped the tip of your blade–this means it’s time for a new blade.

      The blade in the Cameo, as you can see, is super tiny. When you choose a blade setting that is too high for what your are cutting, the tip will break off and you will have have tearing or no cutting at all. Time for a new blade.

      The Cameo blade housing needs to be cleaned regularly to remove any debris from previous cuts. Simply remove the blade from your machine and use a straight pin to clear any bits of paper from around the blade.

      When you install your next new blade, be sure to always use the settings recommended in the Silhouette Studio software. Also, remember to physically set the blade to the same setting. So, for example, if you are cutting something that Silhouette Studio recommends blade 3, speed 3, thickness 25, be sure that the Cameo blade is set at 3.

      I went through three blades before I finally got one that worked. As you may have read in my blog, the first blades that were produced in China were defective. However, by February 2012, Silhouette America began to distribute new blades that were produced in Europe. These blades were great…but, many of the defective blades may have still been in circulation (and could be even today).

      I urge you not to give up on your Silhouette. I promise you will fall in love with it the moment you see your first beautifully cut shape. You’ve come this far, so why not give it one last shot? I tore up many a sheet of cardstock before it all came together. But, now, it’s second nature–I don’t even worry about things not working right, because they always do. I am an avid card-maker and I have been using the same blade for the past year. I clean the blade housing regularly (which only takes a couples of seconds) and I always use the “test cut” feature to make sure I have all the right settings.

      Keep calm and carry on. And, please let me know how it works out.


      • Thank you for responding Gloria. 🙂 I appreciate you taking the time to help. I think I chipped the tip of my blade like you said but setting it to 3,3,33 seemed to really help. I think most of my problem is that I’m trying to use glitter paper and it doesn’t seem to want to cut it. I get not turning the blade past 4 or 5 but it seems like I have trouble finding the correct setting for the glitter paper. And then I feel like it’s going to dull my blade out by cutting it. I do clean the housing the blade sits in to make sure it’s clean when I put it in. I have also had a sticky mat that was used once and for some reason after I pulled the sheet off it wasn’t sticky. I ran it under room temperature water for just a minute and the sticky stuff was just peeling off. I didn’t even use soap. I want to love this thing so bad. I am going to give her another go. I just got a new blade today. I also have the sketch pens in my amazon cart but haven’t pulled the trigger on them yet. Do you know anything about them? Would love to hear your opinion. Good and bad. 🙂 I also bought the fabric blade….I haven’t used it yet but again….if you have info you would love to share…I would be ever so grateful. 🙂 Thanks again for all your help and encouragement!!

        • Hi, April,

          Sounds like you’re doing everything right!! 🙂

          When you are cutting glitter paper, you can go ahead and set your blade at 6 and use the default settings for speed (3) and thickness (33). You might want to try doing a double-cut just to make sure you’re cutting all the way through. Of course, the test cut always helps. Don’t worry about dulling your blade, the Cameo blade can stand up to a great deal when set correctly…which isn’t always easy to do!! LOL!!!

          If you have chipped the tip of your blade, you will no longer get clean cuts with any blade settings (in fact, it may not cut at all). So, if your blade is still cutting, then it’s not chipped.

          I’m sorry to say that I haven’t cut any fabric, nor do I have the sketch pens, so I can offer any advice. Once you try them out, I would love to hear how they worked out for you and any advice you might have for me!!

          Good luck, and come one back anytime, I’m always here!!


          • i have been reading your messages about the cameo and have now found a solution as to why mine has suddenly stopped cutting through my card . the blade tip is broken boo hoo! i have used it alot even though i have only had it about a week. will have to get a new blade. it’s a great machine i love the noise it makes when it does circles. the cuts were really precise(they aren’t now).i’ve always wanted an electronic cuttting machine i brought the xyron years ago but didnt think much of it but this is great. bird cages , boxes, candy dispensers, bags, christmas decorations, flowers, allsorts. i’ve made tons of things. don’t know where i’m going to put all these things though!!!!great blogs thanks for the help….

      • Hi Gloria,
        I was wanting to know, my cameo is cutting some of my designs beautifully, but with small fonts or patterns I am getting a lot of tearing, is it because I’m pushing my cameo to points it can’t handle or can u suggest something?
        Regards Kate

    • Hang in there! I am the one of the least mechanical people on earth, but I read a lot of the trouble shutting issues and figured out all my issues. First when you place your matt into the Silhouette make sure the mat is being gripped by the ends of the white roller things. If you notice the ends come down farther the rest of the white rollers and make contact with the mat. My mat was flinging all over the place until I did that. I never even looked at that! I guess everyone assumes everyone would know that, well no! I was so worry about everything else!

      Next issue, my paper ripping. I am on my 2nd blade since November 2012. Looks like I shouldn’t be. I read that putting a pin in the needle cartage to clean it out will help. Forget that, a can of 3M Dust Remover sprayed in the needle cartridge after every cut will do magic! Just like new! When my current needle dies I am going to try spraying in my old cartridge (yep, still have it).

      Good Luck! 🙂

      • Hi, Kimberly,

        Thanks, so much, for the tip about the 3M Dust Spray. I know this will be a useful tip for all my readers. I’m going to try it, too!!

        Happy crafting,


  11. Hi Gloria,

    Thank you so much for your encouraging words. I have heard back from Silhouette, who at least are prepared to back up their product by sending me a new mat and cutting blade since the blade is faulty and the mat is torn (the sticky liner ripped off the mat when I pulled off the cardstock!) I am hoping that this will fix the problem, but of course I will need to wait about three weeks before I can try again. In the meantime I will stare at it and sigh and wonder if it will ever cut intricate cuts for me. = )

    Many thanks for your support,


    P.S. I tried to post a reply to your comment, but the spam detection kept coming back wrong……last I checked 2 + 4 = 6 and 4 + 6 = 10, but aparently I may need some refresher classes in basic math! Lol! = )

  12. I just got a Silhouette Cameo for Christmas. I know I am new to it, but I hate it! The cutting mat I have is so sticky it is impossible to peel off paper or cardstock without tearing it to shreds. The blade won’t cut a single thing cleanly, just hacks it all to bits! I get half a snowflake, then a hacked mess. I have cleaned, repositioned, everything! It also doesn’t seem to be able to “keep track” of its cuts as it doesn’t cut the snowflake right. It seems to buzz and skip bits like it’s getting stuck but I’ll be stuffed if I know why. I have given up on the cardstock and tried with plain paper as I thought maybe I had the settings wrong, but it still sucks! In short, I was really excited to get it and now I wish I hadn’t. Supreme waste of money. Have wasted most of my day off trying to get one cut out of it.

    • Hi, Jennifer,

      Merry Christmas! I promise you will change your mind about your Cameo. You will LOVE it, once you get past the initial problems. I will help you through…I promise!

      Let’s start with your cutting mat: Everyone has the same problem when the mat is new. The solution is to take a towel and lay it on your cutting mat; press the towel down and then pull it off. Do this a few times and it should be fine.

      Next, your blade problem is also not unique. I have had hundreds of crafters write to me with the same problem. It sounds as though the tip of your blade is chipped. The blade is so tiny and if it is set too high for what you’re cutting, the tip of the blade will chip and will tear up your paper. Silhouette America recently provided us with an update to the software and all the settings have been changes. I generally cut 80 lb. paper on a blade setting of 3, speed 3, thickness 33. You could experiment a bit with the blade setting, but don’t go beyond 4 or 5. The bad news is, that once your blade is chipped, your only solution is to buy a new blade. The good news is that the blades last a really long time. I had all of the same problems you are having when I first bought my Cameo. It turned out that I had a defective blade…in fact, Silhouette America sent me three blades before I finally got one that worked. I have been using that same blade for the past nine months, and I use my Cameo regularly.

      I know how discourage you must feel, Jennifer. I felt exactly the same way. I was sure I had wasted my money on a piece of junk. But, believe me, once you sort out the blade issue and get the stickiness off your mat, you WILL fall in love with your Cameo.

      I have posted several articles on Cameo problems and solutions which I think will help you out, so please feel free to search my blog for more information.

      One more thing, Do call the Silhouette America support number and tell them you have a defective blade. The will send you a new one. I keep a new one on hand at all times, just to be on the safe side.

      I am always here to help with Cameo problems, so write to me anytime!

      Good luck!!

  13. I have paper stuck in my blade and now every time i cut a design the blade rips the paper, i have tried cleaning my blade with a needle and a pin and i can see the paper, but i can never get it out. I even seem to be pushing the paper further into the blade, what can i do?

    • Hi, Leila,
      Keeping the blade clean is a pain! Try using canned air and blowing it from the top of the blade. I have not tried this one, myself, but a number of my readers say it’s by far the beat way to clean the blade. Also, you won’t risk harm the blade as we do when we use a pin.

      If you blade is still tearing the paper once you get the residue paper out, then the tip of the blade is chipped and it’s time for a new blade.

      Let us know how it goes! We would all love to know the best way to clean the Cameo blade.

      Good luck, Leila!

  14. ughh! I am so frustrated. I am having blade problems but I’m not sure what the problem exactly is and how to fix it. My blade does not go up and down. It is like it is stuck. I pushed it down while it was moving and it seems to help for a little bit but after a few minutes it gets stuck again and won’t go down. Has anyone else had this problem? I’t not exactly the blade but the mechanism that makes the blade go up and down to cute.

    • Hi, Kelly,
      I haven’t heard of anyone else having this problem. It sounds like there is a mechanical problem with your Cameo. Have you tried taking the blade out and then re-inserting it into holder, just to make sure it is set in all the way? If you have tried this and you’re still having a problem, you need to talk to Silhouette support. Perhaps they have some trouble-shooting ideas that we aren’t aware of. If any of my readers have any ideas for Kelly, please let us know!
      Let us know what happens, Kelly. Best of luck!!

  15. Yep, not alone. I also have had blade issues. I have gone through 2 and they just sent me a new one. It’s SO frustrating. I wish the cap came off to allow you to clean out little bits of paper. They suggested using a paint brush. I have also adjusted the fin so that it sits in the 6 o’clock position. I never did that before.

    They are very prompt at responding to emails and give very thorough answers but the bottom line is the blades are clearly flawed and designed poorly. This is my first cutting machine and I am finding it very costly to keep up. Not at all what I expected.

    • Hello, Mrs. Foster,

      Well, you’re right about not being alone! I can’t even begin to tell you how many Cameo owners have written to me about the defective blade issue. In fact I just responded to Dawn, who is now on her fourth blade and is still having problems.

      I had the same problem when I bought my Cameo. it took three months and four blades before I was able to cut out anything. With the defective blades, everything I tried to cut just ripped to shreds.

      My advice to you is to continue to contact Silhouette America–by phone–until you finally get a blade that is not defective. It’s much more effective to speak with a support person because they can’t brush you off. Let them know that you are fully aware that their blade issue is global and that the blades made in Taiwan are defective. As of the end of February 2012, they receive new blades that were manufactured in Europe–these blades have been very reliable.

      You are a paying customer and you deserve their respect and prompt attention to your problem. Don’t let them off easy!!! We consumers must insist on good service and good products.

      I am now extremely happy with my Cameo. I use it every day and cut out very tiny and intricate designs. You will, too…as soon as they send you a good blade!!

      Please let me know how it goes. I’m here, anytime, if you have questions or need to toss around some ideas.

      Good luck!!


  16. I have a new Silhouette as well and it cut contact paper beautifully the other day. Now it’s not cutting. The blade moves and it says “successful cut” when it’s done, but the paper is not cut. I can see that the blade isn’t low enough to even touch the paper. I don’t use a mat and have selected it so. Any thoughts?

    • Hi, Debbie,

      It’s very possible that the tip of your blade has broken off and, although the machine is going through the cutting process, the blade just cannot reach the paper.

      Can you recall what you cut last? If it was something that required a higher than 3 blade setting, did you remember to physically reset the blade when you were done? I’m thinking that if you didn’t reset the blade to a lower number, you may have broken off the tip.

      Or, is your blade set at 1, and just not able to cut through your medium. If you can pin it down to one of these, you will likely have your answer. I hope your blade tip is not broken off, but if it is, you will have to buy a new blade. :o( I’m keeping my fingers crossed for you!!!


  17. problems!! So glad to have found this blog.

    I am having similar problems, after contacting Silhouette they actually dispatched a replacement blade from their Europe base, took 3 weeks to arrive!! I pop it in this morning to cut a project for my art group, it cuts one sheet beautifully, there’s me getting over excited, only to come and cut the exact same image, same cardstock, same setting, it got half way around and refused to cut all the way through….OMG!! I did a second cut and still nothing, switched to the Craft robo blade holder set and it cut great. I suspect the blade has broken, but how is that possible when its sitting there cutting away and mid cut, it just breaks???

    This is so irritating, I see all these lovely designs cut by everyone else and my Cameo is nowhere close to cutting a simple design!

    Someone mentioned the paper bits being caught in the blade, this really irritates me, getting out those little pieces out is a real pain and if you blade isn’t cutting great to start off with, I am almost ready to give up at that point! I have found that my craft robo blade holder set has screw off blade cap which is prefect to get out the fiddling little pieces of paper, would be nice if the Cameo blade had a screw off blade cap, life would be easier.

    I too had mat problems, overly sticky…I used an old cotton pillowcase, lay it flat over it, rub quite hard and peeled off, did that a few times, found it worked fine.

    Mat moving around, sounds like the blue drop handle on the right is up or it is not places under the rollers quite right.

    Mat not sticky enough, I use photo reposition spray. I actually purchased an A3 non-brand cutting mat from Ebay, found the tacky to be just enough.

    I am just soooo desperate for this to work correctly, I would love to cut fabric and vinyl, but do I risk messing up expensive vinyl?? No I do not!

    Well I am off to contact Silhouette America once again as I am quite sure my blade should not have stopped working with it being brand new, out the package and only it’s second cut!

    I hope we all soon are able to make peace with our Cameos.

    • Hi, Kat,

      Welcome to the wonderful…but irritating world…of new Cameo-owners! LOL! I really feel your frustration, because I and sooooo many others have gone through it. I completely agree with that your blade should have continued to cut the second time around. However, it is certainly possible that your blade broke–which could be an unfortunate fluke.

      One way to really clean out the blade housing is to physically turn it up to 10 (not on the screen)…that pushes the blade out of the housing as far as possible. It may push some of the paper debris out, also. It will also make it easier to clean out any debris that is around the blade. BE SURE to turn the blade back down to three or lower before you put it back in the Cameo.

      I would certainly ask Silhouette America for a new blade. They send me three new ones, before we actually got one of the non-defective ones.

      I remember feeling so frustrated when I first got my Cameo–in fact, I thought I had made a big mistake buying it. However, with time and patience, it all worked out. Now I have a reliable Cameo that I couldn’t be without.

      Thanks, so much for sharing some of your tips with us–the one about the “too-sticky” cutting mat is a great!

      Come one back when you have a minute and let us all know how it turns out for you. We are all INTERESTED.

      Keep smiling and don’t give up hope!!


  18. I just purchased the unit and this is my first try. I have three questions.
    I have not seen any questions about cutting fabric. I have backed my fabric with Wonder Under and stuck the paper to the mat. On the recommended setting of 3, the fabric was barely scored. On a setting of 4, the cutter cuts the left side but not the center or right. On a setting of 5, everything is shredded. What’s up with this?
    In the design mode, I set it to trace only the outside of the leaf vine image but it also traced the inside. When I tried to clean up the inside because it had placed interior lines running somewhat the shape of the outer leaf line, the program just kept putting the lines back in. They did not go in exactly as they were before, but they still could not be erased. Is there a setting that will get it to stop replacing the lines?
    Is there a setting to reduce the size of the eraser or change the shape?
    Thanks for your help.

    • Hi, Jane,
      Sorry it took me so long to respond to your questions. It’s been really busy in our family with graduations, new career beginnings and birthdays! Anyway, let’s see if we can figure out some of your problems…

      1) Cutting Fabric: I haven’t done any fabric cutting, yet, but I did find a great site that might be of help to you. There’s an article entitled: “Sewing with Cameo.” Here it is:
      2) Tracing: Rather than write a long text on how to trace, here is a fantastic video that shows you, step-by-step, how to do it.
      3) Eraser: I don’t know of any way to change the size of shape of the eraser tool. If any of my readers know about this, please drop by and share your knowledge and tips!
      I hope this helps, Jane. Come on back, anytime. I always here and happy to help.

  19. Thank you for this blog. I am also having blade issue. It worked fine on Monday, but today I tried to use it and it will not cut anything. I increased the blade to 10, speed to 3 and hit double cut, but nothing.
    I have ordered 3 additional blades from Amazon, but wont have them until next week. I just bought my machine in April, so I did not think I would have to replace my blade already. I have a message into Silhouette to see if they have any suggestions.

    • Hi, Karie,

      I thought I would write to you, personally, to help you with your blade problem. I had exactly the same issue when I first got my Cameo. Luckily, after much persistence and research, I now understand the Cameo and it works beautifully.

      Let’s begin at the beginning…

      – Your Cameo blade should be set at 3 most of the time; speed 3; thickness 33. This is the correct setting for regular 80 lb. cardstock, such as Stamping Up Whisper White.
      – When you turn the blade to a higher number, the blade comes down deeper and the tip of the blade breaks off. Then, your only solution is to buy a new blade.
      – The key to remember is NEVER turn your blade past 3, unless you are cutting heavier-than-usual media.

      Tip: When select the blade setting of 3, make sure that you select the same setting in the software (on your screen). Also, the Silhouette Studio software resets your on-screen blade setting to 1 every time you shut down the program. So, make sure to check your settings every time you start up.

      Don’t give up, Karie, just follow these recommendations and you will have no more problems with your blade!

      I have written a number of articles focusing on problems and solutions to Silhouette Cameo problems. Here is a link to one that might be of help to you There are many more on Globug Ideas.

      Good luck, Karie. Please come back and let me know how you’re doing. Also, if you have any more questions or concerns about your Cameo, just send me an e-mail or leave a comment on my blog.

      Take care!

  20. CAMEO is a CATASTROPHE!! I thought I was doing all the right things by researching, and shopping around & waiting for coupons & sales before splurging on my silhouette cameo. The stuff online really makes you feel confident this is the best choice out there – but wow I now feel like the worst crafter ever! My precious cutting mat is always slipping around so much that even when I spent a ridiculous amount of money for a new blade RIGHT after getting my machine it still just ripped my vinyl all up and made my paper projects impossible because it’s SO sticky they just rip to shreds! I feel like I’ve been cheated & used as a guenie pig aprox equal to an I-phone tester & I feel like every project I planned to complete with my cameo is not only frustrating my family by piling up, but now just staring me in the face laughing 🙁 There should really be something done on behalf of the Silhouette company for all of us who trusted in their name & product reputation.
    Quite disappointed

    • Hi, Cassie,

      Oh, poor you! I know just how you feel. When I got my Cameo last November (2011), I was ready to send it back or take it out to sea and toss it overboard. But, I persisted and I am now creating beautiful and detailed cards and embellishments. So, let’s go back to the beginning of your problems…

      Your cutting mat is slipping around:
      – Check that the blue lever on the right side of your roller bar is in the locked position (up). This will tighten the roller bar down so it grips your cutting mat.
      – Make sure that both rollers are on your cutting mat or vinyl.
      – If this is not your problem, then you should definitely contact Silhouette America support. (I will include a link at the end of this message).
      – Here is a link to an article that I posted recently—it deals with the problems you are having.

      Your cutting mat is too sticky:
      – I had the same problem when my mat was new (and so did thousands of other crafters). However, after you have used it just a few times, it loses a lot of its stickiness. Try putting a heavy piece of 12”x12” cardstock on your cutting mat and pressing it down firmly, then remove it. Do this a few times and you should see a huge improvement.
      – After a few uses,you may then have a problem with it your mat not being stick enough. But, there is a solution for that, too. Check out this post that focuses on a number of Silhouette Cameo problems and solutions.

      Your cutting blade…:
      – I had problems with my cutting blade, too. It ripped everything I tried to cut. Well, I spoke with Silhouette America on several occasions and learned a lot about the trials and tribulations of the Silhouette Cameo. To begin with, the blades that were included with the first shipment Silhouette Cameos were defective. They had been installed inside the black casing at the wrong angle and could not make clean cuts. By the end of February 2012, the company had a new shipment of blades and the old, defective ones were discontinued. They sent me new blades on three occasions—the third one being from the new batch of non-defective blades.
      – When you set your blade depth you must be sure not to set it higher than necessary—typically it’s set at 3 for regular 80 lb. cardstock. When the blade is set too high (for example, setting it at 5 for regular cardstock would be much too high) it pierces through the paper and the end of the blade chips off. Then, it won’t cut anything and it’s time for a new blade.
      – You need to clean your blade from time to time. If you make a cut that isn’t clean, remove the blade from the Cameo and check to see if there is any debris around the cutting blade. If so, use a needle or a straight pin to remove it. Replace the blade into your Cameo and you should be back in business.

      Cassie, please don’t give up on your Silhouette Cameo. Once you get through the growing pains, I PROMISE you will love it. I have many friends who are crafters and they all say that the Cameo blows the Cricut right out of the water. The Cameo can make much more detailed cuts that the Cricut could ever hope to do. And, remember, you can but images, patterns and templates right from the comfort of your computer desk. Please take time to read the posts I have suggested above. I am sure you will find solutions to your problems. If, after reading the posts, you are still having problems, I urge you to call Silhouette America. Explain your issues and they will walk you through some solutions. Ask them to send you a new blade, while you’re at it. They sent me three before I finally got one from the new batch.

      I hope this helps, Cassie. Please come back and let me know how you are doing. And remember, I promise you will fall in love with your Cameo, just as I have with mine!!!

      Good luck,

  21. I just went to the silhouette store to purchase a new blade and they have been out of stock the past week. Went all over town to find a new one and no one sells silhouette items. WOW! What to do? I’m frustrated as all of you. I’ve been having the same issues with the blade being. The cleaning is pathetic and needs to be corrected. I think that in itself is the biggest issue other then maybe the blade becoming bent.

    Let me know if any of you hear any changes from Silhouette.

    • Hi, Suz,
      By the “Silhouette store,” I take you mean the on-line Silhouette America store, right? I live in Canada and Silhouette products are still not available in stores. In fact, last time I was in Michael’s here in Ottawa, I asked when Silhouette products would be available and the reply was, “What’s a Silhouette?” Yikes!!!

      I’m not sure what you mean by, “the cleaning…needs to be corrected.” Do you mean cleaning by checking around the blade with a pin to remove any paper debris?

      I learned from many conversations with the Silhouette American support team that the blade doesn’t bend, the tip actually breaks off when it is set too high for the thickness of the paper. If you are cutting regular cardstock, such as Stamping Up 80 lb. cardstock, the blade should be set at 3, thickness 33, speed 3. Unless you are cutting much heavier cardstock, the blade setting should remain at 3. Perhaps the tip of your blade has been chipped off…that happened to me when I first got my Silhouette.

      Silhouette America gets their shipments of blades in pretty quickly, so it might be a good idea to order yours, now. You’ll likely have it before you know it…if you live in the USA. If you live in Canada, be prepared to wait 2-3 weeks.

      Good luck!! I hope you will come back and let us know how it all works out, Suz.


  22. After cutting a few pages of vinyl without the cutting mat, my silhouette is cutting high and to the right. It makes using the print and cut feature very frustrating! I’ve tried calibrating my machine, but Silhouette gives little to no instruction on how to do so. If anyone has any clue how to manually adjust the blade, I would be forever in your debt.

    Much thanks!

    • Hi, Carrie,
      I haven’t heard anyone else mention this. This may be just a shot in the dark, but when you put your cutting mat in, is the arrow on the mat facing the machine? The spacing at the top and bottom of the mat are the same, so you can put either the top or bottom into the machine first. The spacing (margins) on the sides of the mat are narrower than the top and bottom. This could throw off positioning of your images.

      If this isn’t the case, you should probably contact Silhouette Support…here are the phone numbers, which I copied from their site and pasted below.

      I hope you solve your problem, Carrie. Please come back and let us know how it works out—I am sure there are other Silhouette owners who have had the same problem.

      Good luck!!

      Contact Silhouette
      Phone 801.983.8937
      800.859.8243 Toll-free (US only)
      Corporate Office
      Mailing Address Silhouette America, Inc.
      1276 S 1380 W
      Orem, UT 84058
      Email Product/software questions, order/subscription questions, troubleshooting, technical support
      Press, media, affiliate programs, advertising, marketing information
      Educators and non-profit institutions
      Wholesale information

      Phone +31(0)23 568 3805
      +31(0)23 568 3810 Fax
      Email Retailer Support:
      Customer Support:

  23. So, I just bought the cameo, and I am so upset. I bought it for some big projects coming up and the mat is slipping everywhere. The glue on the mat is so strong that my paper sticks to it each time and tears up when I try to remove it. On top of that, It wont cut through, the mat slides all around and even when I try to adjust the rollers, the one on the right wont move. It is in the grove so tight that it wont come out to slide it over. when i adjusted the settings, it cut straight through my mat and it scratched it. i initially bought it so i could make rhinestone names on shirts but now, I cant even get it to cut through vinyl, let alone something else. Help

  24. I too am having the same issues. Wasted half a roll…. that’s an expensive errors. I’ve been buying 15 inch wide vinyl and just feed it thru for bigger projects.
    I bought the cameo for what I thought would be profitable and user friendly. But have had issues.Anyways, does any one know how to uses images on the internet to make. And is the software I should be buying or classes I acne take to help me create better images. I want to be successful and knowledgeable.

    • Hi!
      I haven’t done any cutting on vinyl, yet, so I will have to turn to our readers for help.
      You don’t mention what kind of images you are looking for or what you intend to use them for. I use images from the Silhouette library, which I buy online right from the software that comes with the Silhouette Cameo. I have also imported some jpegs into Silhouette and used the “print and cut” feature.
      I hope other Silhouette owners will be able to help you. In the meantime, you could visit the Silhouette America site and read the FAQs. Here is the link I hope this helps. Remember, the Silhouette America Support staff is only a phone call away. Good luck!! :o)

  25. I too am having blade problems. I was sent a new blade last week and it worked magically. I made 20 boxes for my daughter’s class and now I cannot get it to cut. I’ve cleaned out the blade, changed the settings and it only scores the card stock. My frustration level is pretty high.

    • Hi,

      I can truly relate to your frustration and I hope I can help.

      If your blade worked perfectly and you were able to make the 20 boxes, then we know that you had a good blade.
      You say that you have cleaned the blade, so we can rule that one out.
      If you are trying to cut regular weight scrapbooking paper or cardstock (the average is usually 80 lbs.), you should be able to do that with your blade set at 3, thickness 33 and speed 3. If you are cutting a heavier cardstock, you could try turning your blade setting up to 4, 5 or 6. Be sure to keep the speed at about 2.

      My best guess is that the tip of your blade has broken off and it can no longer reach all the way through the paper.

      You could try using your standard settings and selecting the “double cut” option. If that still doesn’t give you a clean cut, then you almost certainly have broken blade.

      Please come back and let me know how it works out. I like to share these problems with all of my readers—I have 1,000-1,500 readers every month asking about Silhouette Cameo blade issues, so there will be lots of interest in your story.

      I’m keeping my fingers crossed for you!
      Good luck!

  26. hi
    like all you ladies i’m having the same problem one minute its cutting perfectly the next it tears the paper or missing parts of the cut.I even had it on highest setting and still doesnt cut straight through. I was thrilled when my partner brought me this for my birthday but now i just want to throw it across the room lol

  27. Hey Gloria-

    Just reading your blog because I have a Cameo that has been having similar problems and I have a few solutions (other than buying a new blade of course)

    – For the mat: I like to scrub mine off in the sink with dish soap, then I dry it. After that I use Krylon’s repositionable adhesive and spray it outside. I de-tack it so that the adhesive isn’t too strong by patting it down with my hands….this is a great way to reuse your mats! There are some ladies out there that like to use other glues instead of the spray and you can find other ideas by searching google…either way this means you don’t have to use tape with every sheet of paper!

    – For the blade: I have been having similar issues with paper and have just placed an order or two replacement blades…HOWEVER I did find out that you can use the silhouette sd blades on the machine which are great to keep on hand for back up! The SD blade has removeable caps that make it easy to dislodge little paper bits stuck in the blade. All you have to do is change the “blade type” option before you print!

    • Thanks, for the great tips!! I know every Silhouette Cameo owner will be happy to hear about the blade solution!!! Great stuff. The Krylon sure is a great solution, too. I hope you will visit, again, and leave us more of your helpful information!!!

  28. Just googled “silhouette cameo blade problem” and found you, because I am trying to make my sons valentines with my new Cameo. I am sad that it isn’t working like it should. It just isn’t cutting everything out and I’m wasting paper! I was excited about using it for vinyl and fabric but now I’m not even sure I should spend the money on the interfacing and vinyl because it could just be a waste of money. I also tried to find a way to “clean” the blade because I can tell there is paper stuck in there but I looked in the troubleshooting section of the software and it is very difficult to locate certain problems. So sad, I was so excited about this…

    • Hi!
      Thanks for stopping by my blog. You are definitely not alone with your Silhouette Cameo blade problem. I have had so many crafters writing to me about their Silhouette Cameo issues.

      I had several lengthy conversations with the Cameo technical support team about many of the issues we are experiencing. As for the blade problem, they recommend taking a needle and running it around the blade to pull out any debris. Try this and, if it doesn’t help, then you might have a defective blade.

      Many of the people who have written to me have told me that their blades are fine one day and then tear the paper the next day. It is very frustrating!!

      I wish you the best of luck in completing the Valentine project for your son. Please pop by my blog again and let us all know how it worked out.

      Hope you are having a happy day,


  29. Add me to the list! Same issues but my mat slides and not my paper on the mat. I don’t think I understand why taping the paper to the mat would help this. I have the same problem with vinyl. I’ve tried all the tips and tricks and wasted so much money in vinyl and papers! I’m taping the back of the mat now as I heard that can help but can I just say that I officially hate packing tape! Not convinced this makes sense but what the heck here goes

    • Hi, Christy,

      My suggestion to tape the paper to the mat is to keep the paper from sliding around on the mat.

      In your case, with the mat sliding around, you should check for two things:

      –first, is your mat centred under both rollers? The rollers are movable, so be sure they are set at the correct width for you mat.
      –second, is the roller bar tightened down? There is a blue level on the right-hand side, just above the roller bar. Press it down to tighten the roller bar.

      If these two suggestions don’t work, you should contact Silhouette America support as you may have a defective part. Here is the contact information:

      Contact Silhouette
      Phone 801.983.8937
      800.859.8243 Toll-free (US only)
      Corporate Office
      Mailing Address Silhouette America, Inc.
      686 E 110 S
      Suite 202
      American Fork, UT 84003
      Email Product/software questions, order/subscription questions, troubleshooting, technical support

      There are many others having problems with the Cameo and it would be great if you would drop by Globug Ideas again and let us know if and how you solved your problem. We are trying to share information with other crafters to help each other out!

      Thanks, again for stopping by. Good luck!


  30. I was searching for blade setting for Bazzill and upon this site !! I totally agree with the love-hate relationship. I’m certainly glad to have found all of you and know I’m not alone. One setting doesn’t cut the paper and the next tears it .. it is very frustrating, not to mention the paper that I waste. On the up side, I started buying Dover CD clip art, stencils, etc and trace them uses the trace function … although there is trail and error the possiblities are endless … no only if we get the machine to cut … Bonnie

    • Hi, Bonnie,
      Yes, we should start a club CABP–Crafters Against Blade Problems!! LOL! Thanks for the interesting information about the CD clip art! As I mentioned earlier, I am going to research the Cameo blade problems and then publish the results on my blog. Watch for an article in the next week or two.

      Thanks, for stopping by and for leaving some great information. Also, it IS good to know we aren’t alone with our Cameo issues!!!

  31. Oh my gosh. I am so glad I’m not alone. I got a cameo in November and now have time for all the projects. GRRRR. I am so unhappy with my cameo right now. I am trying to cut on Oracle 631 vinyl size 12 x 24, blade set on two, speed on 5 and thickness on 8. It does great for a few minutes and then the vinyl start moving and the blade goes haywire. I sent an email to the copy about the problem and they suggested the blade not rotating correctly, but the solution I don’t think was for the cameo.
    Any suggestions? I’m desperate to get projects done before Valentine’ Day.

    • Hi, Cheri,
      I responded to you via e-mail, but am posting my reply here, too, for the benefit of others having the same problems with the Cameo. Perhaps we will find some potential solutions!!

      I have had lots of problems with slipping and sliding during the cutting process. I now tape my paper to the cutting mate—just a few pieces across the top and on both sides. In your case, if you’re not using a cutting mat, you might want to place your fingertips lightly on the vinyl to stabilize it as it goes through the cutting process.

      I hope you get your project done before Valentine’s Day.

      Thanks, so much for stopping by. I am going to do some on-line research about Cameo problems and solutions and will post them on my blog as soon as possible.


    • That particular kind of vinyl is horrible! I’ve tried lots of different brands without issue, but that one slips, slides, and makes the machine lose its path every time.

      You are not alone in your frustration with that! I was cutting a vinyl banner, and had to keep stopping it, cutting it, and redoing portions. I had to Franken-assemble the banner when I finally had all the pieces cut.

  32. I just googled silhouette cameo problems and came across your site, lol! I too am having lots of issues with this supposed “fabulous” machine. One minute its terrific and then it seems I jinx myself and another problem occurs. I had blade problems and I finally got the new blade in the mail – tried it yesterday and it worked! But today, the machine went haywire, cut something else other than that on the screen and it cut all the way through the cutting mat leaving me with a hole, so I’m stuck again. I’m very frustrated and I wanted to let you know that you are not alone! I hope that our problems resolve themselves soon, or else I might be returning mine! Good luck with yours!

    • Hi, Leinad,
      It’s so darn frustrating. The whole concept of no cartridges and easy access to on-line images is just wonderful. Now, if the Silhouette Cameo would just be consistent! Let’s stay in touch…let me know how it goes.

  33. I do not have a Cameo, but a few of my friends and several ladies who’s blogs I follow recently got Cameo’s and have had the same issues. A couple of them have mentioned that the company sent them replacement blades and things were working better since then. I just wanted to let you know you ARE NOT ALONE! Lots of people have mentioned the same problems.

    • Thanks, Jani. As you say, it is nice to know that I’m not alone with this issue. I hope Silhouette America finds a solution, soon.
      Thanks, so much, for dropping by and leaving me a comment! I hope you will visit, again,

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