Challenge cutter 265 hb


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Hi Mike,

I posted a question last week about leveling the blade and the advice was great. Here’s the link:

As far as changing the blade, I can’t help. My husband did think that there might be a separate tool/holder to swap out the blade.


There should be two T-handles that thread into the bolt holes on the blade. Two of the holes in the casting that hold the blade are slots. Remove the bolts from these two holes and replace them with the T-handles. Remove the rest of the bolts, loosen the T-handles and use the T-handles to remove the blade. The blade will be a little heavy, be ready for it. Be careful, I don’t even want to think about the cut you could get if you lost control of the blade.


You can turn the motor off and operate the controls to get the blade to the bottom of the stroke. You can make T-handles by getting some allen screws that fit your blade and welding T-wrenches to them. Watch the screw length, you don’t want it too long.


From previous experience, I know that one bolt (farthest to the right on the Challenge) has to come out first, before lowering the guillotine to within a few degrees of BDC, and removing the other (five?) blade mounting bolts. Raising the guillotine to TDC again will allow replacement of the blade. Sumner mentioned that this should be done with the power off. Word.

I would add that changing the blade on this model is a two-person job, providing that enough warning chatter is kept up between the operator, and the assistant. Operator: (before operating any controls) “CLEAR?” Assistant: “clear.” Operator works the controls, and Assistant rotates the flywheel, and/or catches mistakes made by Operator. The buddy system. Keep up the constant warning chatter. The paper cutter is THE most dangerous machine in bindery. Doubly so when there is more than one Operator present.

On the old challenge there are vertical bolts to micro-adjust for the blade height. They are on the guillotine, accessible from behind. The height of the blade is decreased by a few thousandths every time the blade is sharpened. If you have more than one blade - one sharp in cutter, one dull off to the sharpener - they may be of different ages, heights, and manufacturers. Be sure to pay attention to blade heights.