sorry for first error post. - i am editing to show solved in case it helps someone as dumb as me.
I was given this cutter for free, never used a cutter this big. I got it cutting but was having issues. Then I noticed the blade is not over the cutting strip cushion. So i posted here. Then i started taking it apart and realized there are TWO spots for the blade holder to go into. PICS ATTACHED. once i moved it to the back spot, things are aligned and it cuts good now. posting in case it helps anyone else.