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Everything posted by Wildgoose

  1. Wildgoose

    Help! new user

    So I went and looked through SIgnCut a bit to help me remember where things are located. Your Blade offset is in the CUTTER tab as are the Baud rate which is also very important to have right. You'll have to read through your paperwork to be sure of the correct baud rate. The OVERCUT and some other options are found over in the cut menu when you press the little scissors button. Using the software force and speed settings is set in this area as well. In Advanced settings there is an option for tangential emulation mode and I would avoid using this at least to start with.
  2. Wildgoose

    Help! new user

    300 Seems a little high but as Skeeter said each cutter is a little different. Your cuts look bad bad and I kind of think that you accidentally broke a tip earlier and that has added to the confusion. Happens pretty easy if you are inexperienced and most of us have done the very same more than once so don't feel bad. I am a long time SIgnCut Pro1 user. Great program IMO, so good that I stayed with them after upgrading to a high end cutter. I am looking at your cut pic after the test and trying to even figure out how the long cuts that extend from the corners can happen. I am pretty sure those are from way way too much blade offset. If it were just at the start of an object it would be more like too much over-cut. I don't know if you have another blade but if you do and have not already done so I would put one in and go through the blade depth setting again like before. When you use "some force" it should not be enough to cut all the way through the backing if the blade was long enough but enough that there is no question that you are getting the most of the cut that is possible with the blade set slightly less than the full thickness of the vinyl and backing combined. After making sure you have that set about right then I would take a guess at pressure more around the 90 to 110 gr mark to start with and maybe even try at 70 or so just to be darn sure you don't overdo it and push through too far. Once you get used to your machine you will find that you usually run in one or two pressure ranges based on the type of vinyl. This is more evident on the budget cutters than on higher end machines for whatever reason. BEFORE do the test cut for pressure make sure your blade OFF-SET is set around .25mm and your blade OVER-CUT at zero. The MH cutters have to be set within the SIgnCut program I'm pretty sure. Other models may have these tools on the cutter home screen and there is somewhere within SignCut where you choose to let SignCut control these settings or control them on the plotter. Lastly, if the design is not copyright protected maybe you can upload the vector design and we can take a peek and make sure there isn't something weird goin on with it. The test cut had rounded corners but didn't look that bad compared to the next picture.
  3. 60 degree blades for thick material. Cut it at slow speeds too.
  4. Wildgoose

    Cutting in sections

    That kind of sucks when you thought you upgraded to the proper version. You can do it manually but it's a work around. Make two files or however many it takes to do the size you're building. You can cut the design into parts but there needs to be some overlap so you have to allow for that. You must be doing some SERIOUS blasting to be that big.
  5. Wildgoose

    Oracle 651 not sticking to a powder coated bottle

    Oh yeah it does it good. I do these from time to time. You can blast etch through about anything. I typically see the anodized aluminum but have etched all sorts of stuff with good results. The hardest thing so far was a porcelain tile which was hard enough I had to use real blast resist. Bottles and such vinyl works fine.
  6. Wildgoose

    Newbie Needs help

    There are several elements to being successful in this craft. Each one is as important as the next.
  7. Wildgoose

    Newbie Needs help

    I probably use a little more tack but agree with slice. Your name will become associated to a degree with the end product. I definitely STEER my clients one way or the other usually to make my part of the job go easier. Usually an up-charge for "difficult" design elements will do it. Like Ok here is the price for the design as received or here is a better price if we do this a little differently etc... there are ways to get them to loosen up or at least make a little extra money to put up with the trouble. This is especially easy to do if you are also doing the design work. I just don't offer them things that are too hard to build, like graphics that HAVE to be printed like a self portrait or a gradient shadow or severely distressed elements. Your logo is pieced together with elements that are available online. I have those very mountains from a vector I purchased through shutter stock or one of the others. The rest is just typed and modified lettering. Auto traces always look horrible and I think some of what we are seeing are results from that. I am a little OCD when it comes to design work but every sign guy in the world can spot a bad job.
  8. Wildgoose

    Oracle 651 not sticking to a powder coated bottle

    Old post but most likely sand blast.
  9. Wildgoose

    Can't put Hyphen in??

    No once you convert in most programs it's a done deal. I TRY to remember to always save a "working" file off that still has the live text but sometimes forget. If you remember the font just type a hyphen in anywhere on the design, convert it to outlines and drag it up there and like they said drag the 9 over enough that it looks right. I often resize or change hyphens when the font's I am working in don't appeal to me.
  10. Wildgoose

    Happy New Year

    You too bigmax.
  11. Wildgoose

    Got another one

    Gosh I use it as much to find fonts I already have but can't remember. Sooooo handy.
  12. Wildgoose

    Newbie Needs help

    You are attempting what most consider higher level cutting usually more effective once you've had more time in the seat so to speak. More experience with your cutter and getting it fully dialed in will produce better results. Sort of like attempting to enter a nascar race the week you got your drivers license. Your machine is probably capable and most of us who have been doing this a while could come tweak a few things and get it to cut but even someone experienced can have trouble depending on a lot of variables. I suggest getting your hands on a better piece of vinyl. 651 is great stuff for basic everyday semi-permanent to permanent work but 751 or even better 951 will cut like butter and weed easier. If you have a local supplier you can run grab a single yard from it may be worth the expense at least to have something to play with so you can master your machine. 651 is calendared and by nature is stiffer and has a tendency to fight you if by chance your cut missed the start and stop point perfectly or by popping up tiny pieces. Higher end cast vinyls are much more flexible and forgiving is this type of application. You might also look and see if your cutting program has any options to cut the inside of small letters first. Some programs do some don't. Pay particular attention to your blade depth setting then double check your blade offset is dialed. Cut with only enough pressure to scratch the liner and this will vary from material to material and even from temperature in the room or humidity sometimes. Age of vinyl etc... If you have problems with tags where the start and stop point of a letter don't quite touch you can add a little overcut although go sparingly with that if you do. I don't think theoretically it should ever need to be more than the blade offset or something else is wrong. I can't recall if the table titan is a servo machine or stepper motors. Stepper motors may not be precise enough to do really small lettering. The Titan series have been pretty good though and 1/4" SHOULD be do-able with proper set-up. I did 1/4" letters with my old stepper P-Cut back before I upgraded. Use a magnifying glass to see up close what's happening. You can tell a lot if you look really close. Great practice either way and if it's that small you aren't wasting too much vinyl in the process. There are a lot of video out there that can help but beware because there are a lot of stupid stuff that's wrong too.
  13. Wildgoose


    If the download doesn't work you can get a decent optical drive for $20-$40 that connects via a usb
  14. Wildgoose

    Is a mobile signs shop a good investment?

    Sounds like a good time. You will need a reliable power source as well so you don't fry something. That trailer is pretty small to try and use for all your equipment AND prepping a vehicle graphics project. I'm just trying to envision the workflow with a decent sized vinyl project and trying to weed then mask anything of size inside a trailer out of the elements (wind mostly) Personally I would spend money on getting high quality equipment so your work is easier and more precise. You'd be surprised at the difference in accuracy when layering complicated cuts. I have pretty much stepped away from signs and vehicles and do almost exclusively apparel now. The revenue stream is much more steady and it's something that fits with a home based in the evening type side job. Only so many people want/need vehicle or sign work but everyone, literally everyone wants a tee shirt. With the right equipment you can do sports team uniforms and all sorts of stuff. You can also work well into the night when the big orders come instead of having to try and schedule time during the day to go do an install. Our little side business that started in 2010 almost exactly like yours now grosses over 80K each season, still as a part time gig. My wife is a stay at home and helps press shirts while I'm at my day job. I guess to answer your question with a question, how will the trailer make you money and how much will it add to your overall revenue. How long for ROI and if it takes off will you be needing to upsize? At what point do you think you will outgrow the budget equipment you have been using? Sorry not to actually give you an answer but you can probably read between the lines and see my thoughts. Good luck in your quest though!
  15. Wildgoose

    MH Series 34" - Mac User Software help?

    I did not mention that I too like my compadre's use a windows laptop just for cutting. I do my design work on my mac but usually pull the design off the computer via a thumb drive and go cut it on a laptop on the other side of the room. I do this so I keep my design computer unencumbered while the machine is cutting. Having the SignCut Pro 1 Dongle I can switch computers at any time if my windows laptop decides to blue screen or crap out which happens all too often. Slice mentions the note on the MH series that warn about mac compatibility. Some have made it work so that's still debatable but if you're brand new to cutting it can be a steep learning curve on a perfect setup let alone getting mixed and matched equipment. SignCut Pro offers a week free trial. I would try that out and see if you can get it to work and then you'll have some more information to mull over going forward. If you have not unboxed your cutter then maybe leave it boxed and try to return/exchange. Just my $0.02
  16. Wildgoose

    MH Series 34" - Mac User Software help?

    There are a couple of programs that are compatible with mac. Here are a few: #1. I use SignCut Pro 1. It is a cut-only program designed to work in tandem with a design program like Adobe Illustrator (my tool of choice) or Corel Draw or Inkscape (free option). They SignCut people have a Pro 2 version out now that has some design capabilities as well to be more along the lines of a design and cut combo but I have not tried that version. EITHER one will cost you either a weekly, monthly, yearly license fee or you can buy a lifetime dongle. Not free but extremely capable and not only mac friendly but also pc friendly as well. USCutter used to send a years license with new cutters but have stopped, not sure why. #2. USCutter sells Sure Cuts A Lot Pro that is also mac compatible. There are several users on here that run it. You might be able to exchange it or something through USCutter but I'm just a forum moderator (volunteer unpaid helper) so I wouldn't know anything other than to say it's worth asking them. #3. I have no personal experience with it but the open source group who build and modify Inkscape the free vector design program also have some version of cutter control out there I THINK it's called Inkcut but that may be wrong. I have heard of a few who have used it and ASSUME that since they have a mac build of inkscape they also have a mac build of this. Lots of assumptions in there.... Generally speaking there aren't very many FREE options. Inscape being one well known and capable design program (possibly cut too) and the other is the pc-only SignBlazer mentioned by the well meaning if sometimes misunderstood slice&dice. (he loves that old program even though I think he secretly uses Vinyl Master now) It is an old abandoned all in one program that many many people still use and can get it free of charge. I am like you and avoid windows whenever possible so I get ya.
  17. How about contacting SIgnCut tech support to be sure it's not something software related. You can ask for assistance on the website and they are pretty quick to get back to people with an actual live person.
  18. Wildgoose

    New to vinyl cutting.

    make sure your top object is no longer a jpg image. You said you traced it out. Then make sure the image you want to trap inside the shape is below the layer your trace is. In vector art there are basically layers of things. You can move them up or down in the stack of things. I would add some solid fill to the trace to make sure that it is covering the lower layer. I am an Adobe Illustrator guy and not very good in VM so am not a lot of help. Most vector programs can do this but each calls it a different thing and each goes about getting from point A to point B a little differently.
  19. Wildgoose

    New to vinyl cutting.

    Here is a recent post that has more details of what you are wanting to do You will need your outline object which you have from your trace. Then it's basically the same thing as these folks were talking about.
  20. Same answer fro REAL business, computer all the way. A good laptop can do it just fine too and be reasonably mobile if you tether your phone as a hot spot. I broke down this year for my birthday I bought myself an iPad pro and have REALLY enjoyed it. Not functional for design work in AI but for handling other documents for my day-job and being able to open up a PDF plan set, mark it up and turn right around an email off to the original sender with all my scribbles it's a serious time saver. Kind of one of those "Amaze your friends, be the life of the party" thing at reconstruction meetings.
  21. Wildgoose

    Poke anyone?

    My nephew spent 8 or 9 years over on Oahu. He has since moved back to the states and made us some poke at a family function last night. First time I have tried it. I think the one with the sauce he called tsunami I can't remember the other.
  22. Ok good to know. I purchased the beta version way back hoping it would be the best thing since ice cream. I no longer have that program, I gave it away.
  23. Wildgoose

    Font Help

    I have to agree. Poor form dude.
  24. I have Corel D x6 on one of my old computers. I don't use it except the rare file conversion over to AI. I opened it and checked to see the export options and when exporting as an AI file it has a pull down tab that lets you decide which version. I suppose that could be something new to X6 but I bet your X5 has it as well. Maybe go take another look. I made a couple test files to import into VM Pro. (I don't have VM Cut) Interestingly enough though the file I tested doing version 8 came in and so did CS2 but not CS5. I also sort of brought in an svg file but it was way out of scale and not all elements came through properly. I would not be surprised to find that certain versions of svg would work with some experimenting. Maybe some of that will help you.
  25. Well according to that list I was wrong about the svg file. Strange.