How to Save Money on Your Packaging Blades & Knives

Packaging machine knives are a significant line item for makers, distributors, and end users of packaging equipment. Here’s how to get smart about spending on packaging blades.

Cost Cutters: Three Ways to Save on Packaging Blades

Industrial machine knives are the sharp end of the business for anyone involved in the packaging business. Whether you’re an OEM looking for consumables to ship with your products, a distributor serving your customers’ needs, or an end user wanting to replace or upgrade existing cutting equipment, packaging machine knives are likely a key expenditure.

Let’s take a look at some ways to save money on industrial knife equipment, and consider three ways in which spending a little more upfront can save you money in the long run.

Go Big or Go Long?

The easiest way to save money on your machine knife needs is to buy in bulk, possibly from a cut-rate supplier. However, while your monthly bottom line will benefit, buying in volume only saves you money up to a point.

Eventually, more frequent blade replacements, higher maintenance, and increased machinery wear and tear will begin to cost you, not to mention the expense of line downtime or lost income due to poor quality cutting.

So, what are the alternatives?

1. Buy High-Quality Blades

Choosing higher-quality packaging blades will cost you more upfront, but you will immediately benefit from better knife design, superior materials, and quality blade finishes. Higher quality blades are harder, hold their edge better, and are more resistant to corrosion and sticking.

High-quality blades offer:

  • Better performance: Cleaner cutting means fewer line snarl-ups, order do-overs, product rejects, or customer complaints.
  • Greater efficiency: Better blades designed for specific applications can run faster for longer, boosting productivity.
  • Less frequent replacements: Premium blades wear out less often, saving you money on replacements and machine downtime.
  • Lower maintenance costs: Better-made blades are easier to clean and reduce wear on your equipment.

For example, TGW International’s laser-etched slitter knives offer significantly better cut quality and durability than generic ground-edge tools, especially for heavier-duty vacuum seal applications. Spending a little more on a premium crafted blade means real performance gains today and increased efficiency and reduced maintenance down the line.

2. Buy From a Reliable Supplier

Where you buy your blades from makes a difference, too. Choosing a specialist machine knife supplier like TGW can add up to big savings over time. Here’s how:

  • Faster order turnarounds: TGW keeps more blades in stock for more OEM products. That means next-day shipping on many common items.
  • Shorter lead times: Big suppliers like TGW control our own supply chains, allowing us to deliver custom-made special order blades to customers in as little as two weeks.
  • Customized design: We work with OEMs and end users to design products for specific applications. If you’re running into problems, we’ll work with you to find a fix.
  • Support and industry knowledge: TGW offers over a century of experience in the packaging industry. We know the materials you’re cutting and what blades work best.

How does our industry knowledge and experience benefit you? Savings can come from unexpected places. For instance, we had many customers reporting excessive corrosion on their blades, which turned out to be caused by high alkalinity cleaners that promoted rusting. Simply switching to a less caustic cleaner meant real savings for these customers!

3. Look for Value-Add Services

As a dedicated industry player, TGW offers additional services that can add value to your business and help you save on your equipment investments. Our value-add services include:

  • Specialist wear coatings: For customers experiencing significant problems with knife sharpness or corrosion, TGW offers specialist titanium nitride and titanium Carbonitride coatings to strengthen and protect blades. We even offer a Teflon coating to prevent material build-up on high-speed cutoff knives.
  • Stocking program: If you’re a supplier or packager requiring a significant volume of knives, we can manage a stocking program for you. We’ll handle your order book and make sure we always have the blades in stock when you need them. You’ll benefit from being able to source our blades in bulk and reduce custom or rush orders.

Quality Today Means Savings Tomorrow

TGW has built a lasting tradition of service and quality in the industrial machine knife industry. With a legacy of over 100 years of knife-making expertise, we know that short-term thinking yields only short-term results, and an investment in quality today will yield dividends and savings long into the future.

Our premium products and unmatched services are designed to help you make the most of your equipment and to yield savings straight across your value chain. Click below to learn more about what our quality packaging machine knives and other products can do for you.