What is a Slitter? An Introduction to Slitting

You have a roll of material that’s too wide for your die cutter, printer, laminator or other roll-fed processes. Now what?

You want to reduce material cost and inventory. You can do so by buying standard-size rolls and slitting them into the exact size you need.


What is Slitting?


yellow material being slitted by band sawmultiple blades inside of a sheeter


We build top quality slitting machines for the converting industry. In converting, slitting refers to the process cutting large rolls of material into narrower rolls.

The large roll is typically referred to as the master or parent roll. A slitting machine converts a master roll into one or more narrower rolls.

Because of economies, master rolls are often made as large as possible. When these master rolls are not the correct size for your requirements a slitting machine can reduce their width or even their yardage to fit your process.


Common Materials for Slitting


Almost any flexible material is a candidate for slitting.

Some of the common materials are:

Types of Slitting Machines


There are two distinct types of slitting machines: roll slitters and slitter rewinders. Both are commonly referred to as slitting machines. Yet both have distinct differences.

Each has its advantages depending on your slitting requirements. We offer a wide range of slitters. We produce both roll sitters and slitter rewinders.


Roll Slitters


rsw roll slitter unwinder


Roll slitters have a variety of names such as:

Roll Slitters use a large circular blade or fixed band blade to cut all the way through a roll of material. This machine cuts down through the core the material was wound on.

The core of most master rolls is a 3″ (7.62cm) ID paper core. The master roll does not need to be unwound. You can skip the time-consuming process of aligning slitting blades and empty cores.

Rosenthal Roll Slitters are designed to operate in manual models. An operator positions and pulls the blade through the roll of material.


This video is a demos a manually operated Rosenthal Super Roll Slitter in use.


Automatic models are PLC controlled with auto-positioning and cutting.

These types of slitters are ideal for cutting various types of materials. Materials that are suitable for slitting include:

Roll slitters have several advantages over slitter rewinders, including:

Watch this video of a manual Band Slitter in operation.



Slitter Rewinders


Slitter Rewinders slit the master roll into any desired width rolls. They first unwind the master roll then pass the entire web through a series of slitters. Afterward, it rewinds each section onto a new core.

Slitter rewinders have an unwind for holding the master roll. They have a multi-blade slitting station with adjustable slitting heads. This helps cut the wide material into the required widths. They also include single or duplex rewind shafts. These shafts are for holding the empty cores to rewind the slit material.


differential duplex rewinding slitterblades within a slitter rewinder


Slitter rewinders can be outfitted with various slitting styles. Razor Slitting, Shear Slitting and Score Slitting (also known as Crush Slitting) are the most common methods.

Slitter rewinders can not only cut material into narrower rolls but can rewind material from one roll to another.

A digital counter lets you measure the amount of material you rewind.

A slitter rewinder can be configured to your specific industry needs and budget.

Basic Features:

A basic slitter rewinder will have features including:

Available Upgrades:

An upgraded slitter may have other options including:

Differential shafts are adjustable to allow tension on the same shaft to balance from one slitting roll to the next. This is especially important when material thickness varies across the web.


Slitter/Rewinder Advantages


Slitter Rewinders have the following advantages over roll slitters:


Rosenthal’s Slitting Products


We build slitter rewinders, manual roll slitters, automatic roll slitters, and rewinders. Each machine is built to order in the USA.


man opperating a roll hoist


Companies large and small use Rosenthal Slitters for converting a wide variety of materials.


Examples of Materials Suitable for Slitting Include:

Send us a sample roll of your material and we are happy to evaluate it for you.


If you’d like to see other Rosenthal Slitting Machine products in action, visit our YouTube channel.

Rosenthal Mfg’s Slitter Products

Roll Slitter: RS

Roll Slitter with Unwind: RSW

Band Blade: RSB

Automatic: RSA

Slitter Rewinder: SRD