A cutter was a smaller manned civilian ship type for various local transport and small-scale economic (e.g. courier) activities. Cutters were akin to larger shuttles, but smaller than freighters, corvettes, cruisers and liners. Many, but not necessarily all, were capable of atmospheric flight.
For cargo and freight transport purposes within planetary systems, civilian operators and contractors used freighters, due to their larger size and greater, purpose-built capacity.
I saw a few other shuttles clamped in parking bays: two sleek atmosphere cutters like bottle-green arrowheads and a couple of vessels which looked like cousins to the slowboat, all blunt angularity and exposed engine components. Spacesuited figures were swarming around all the ships, carrying umbilical lines and repair kits. A few robots were toiling away on hull-repair tasks, but for the most part the work was being done by humans or bio-engineered animals.
- excerpt from Chapter 12 of Chasm City 
- Historically, cutters are a form of sailboat or small sailship used for coastal patrolling and coastal economic activities. The term is also applied to modern, motorised ships of smaller size, used by coast guards, smaller navies or marine rescue services.
| Electric cars | Volantor | Wheeler | Crawler | Icejammer |
Cable-car | Chasm City Zephyr
|Volantor | Aircraft | Airship|
|ATMOSPHERIC SHUTTLES *|
| Coalition shuttle | Flotilla delta-winged shuttle |
Cutter | "Claw" shuttle | Lighthugger orbital shuttle
|Boats | Diving tug|
|* - these double as spacecraft and aircraft|