CMT-330 Three-Knife Trimmer

In-Line Configuration Shown

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Demonstration Video

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CMT Configurator

CMT Configurator

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Short-run perfect binding has made great strides within our industry in recent years. Trimming duties have been carried out by traditional guillotines for many years, but this process is very time-consuming and less than ideal for the dynamic digital book publishers of today. The Challenge CMT 330 three-knife trimmer brings cost-effective perfect-bound book trimming to your high-production digital book production facility.

The sturdy steel and cast-iron design of the CMT 330 ensures years of trouble-free operation. Hydraulic clamping and cutting action provides strength to cut through up to 2” (50.8mm) thick books without hesitation. Standard features such as UHMW gib surfaces, composite bushings, and stepper motor technology require virtually zero maintenance. True three-knife trimming process provides consistent product quality. Simple knife change procedure cuts downtime dramatically.

The industry-exclusive modularity of the CMT 330 provides added possibilities for future growth within your organization.

The CMT 330 can be configured as a hand-feed off-line trimmer for cost-effective trimming. The optional high-capacity feeder permits up to 36” / 914 cm of books to be stacked and automatically fed into the trimmer. The optional vertical stacker allows up to 24” / 609 cm of books to be delivered. When these two items are combined, this near-line trimming solution permits the perfect binder operator to also feed and collect product from the CMT 330 solution. The CMT 330 can also be configured for true in-line trimming by substituting the book pile feeder with our infeed conveyor and cooling elevator. A variety of conveyors are available to interface your perfect binder with the CMT 330.

The intuitive menu-driven controller allows variable mode data entry with up to 99 job storage. Swift size changes occur in approximately 20 seconds with no tools required! Machine self-diagnostics and error indication walk the operator through any difficulties. Third party control via serial communications allows integration of bar code readers/size change apparatus.

Proudly manufactured in the USA, the CMT 330 provides consistent cut quality, durability, and industry-exclusive modularity that you have come to expect from Challenge products. The CMT 330 continues our legacy of providing… assurance you made the right decision!

  • Trim up to 2” / 50.8 mm thick perfect-bound books
  • Virtually maintenance-free design
  • Fully-automated size change in under 20 seconds with no tools required
  • Modular design – can be configured off-line, in-line, or near-line at any time
  • Optional bar code size change capabilities and optional high-speed size change (under 6 seconds)
  • Process up to 400 books per hour – single book mode
  • Process up to 1,000 books per hour – multiple-book mode
  • Covered under United States Patent Numbers: 5,694,823 and 6,799,497


Min. Trimmed Book Size (spine length x book width): 5.88" x 4" / 149 mm x 102 mm
Max. Starting Book Size (spine length x book width): 13" x 9.5" / 330 mm x 241 mm
Maximum Book Thickness: 2" / 50.8 mm
Minimum Trim: 0.1" / 2.5 mm
Maximum Trim - Top: 6.0" / 152 mm
Maximum Trim - Face: 5.5" / 140 mm

400 books per hour (single book)
1,000 books per hour (multi-book)

Memory: 99 Book Jobs
Set-up Time for Book Size Change: 15 Seconds
Overall Height 64" / 163 cm
Overall Width 37" / 94 cm
Overall Length 84" / 216 cm
Net Weight (approximate) 2,540 lbs / 1,140 kg
Shipping Weight (approximate) 2,950 lbs / 1,338 kg

60 Hz, AC, 3 Phase
208/230 Volts, 20 Amps (service size 40 Amps)


50Hz, AC, 3 Phase

380/415 Volts, 15 Amps (service size 20 Amps)


50Hz, AC, 3 Phase

200/208 Volts, 25 Amps (service size 40 Amps)

The CMT-330 requires 90 PSI / 5.8 BAR regulated, dry, non-lubricated compressed air at a minimum of 7 CFM / 198 LPM (at 90 PSI / 5.8 BAR).  The required minimum air quality rating is ISO 8573.1 Class 2.4.2 (solids < 1 micron, pressure dew point < 38°F @100psig, and oil content < .08 ppm)


The following two compressor systems are commonly used with the CMT-330.  Other equivalent systems may be used also.  The compressor system must include an air dryer capable of ISO Class 4 or better (pressure dew point < 38°F @100psig).  Failure to use dry, non-lubricated compressed air that meets or exceeds the above requirements may cause damage to the machine and will result in THE WARRANTY BEING VOIDED.


System 1 - Traditional piston type compressor. Powerex AS0203 - 2 hp climate control compressor with built-in refrigerated dryer, electronic auto drain and starter.


System 2 - Rotary scroll type compressor.  The advantage to this type is minimum maintenance and very quiet operation (49-51db). Powerex SES0308-208v with ACO100010 factory installed refrigerated dryer and auto drain.


Available from Air Technologies.  Phone: 616-281-9500 or

Challenge reserves the right to make changes to any product or specification without notice and without incurring responsibility to existing units.

Online CMT Configuration Tool: CMT Configurator Page
Product Literature:
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Operator, Technical, & Parts Manuals: Product Manual Search Page


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