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Everything posted by Wildgoose

  1. You have to have the registration marks built into the design in order for the location in relationship to the registration marks to be accurate. I am not a Graphtec guy as mentioned but I found this video that clearly explains the process you need to take. You will find there is some step in here that you have missed.
  2. Wildgoose

    What makes of t shirts?

    Tri-blend are the most comfortable and work good with HTV. You will want to be sure the HTV you select is capable of the tri-blend. They are a little more expensive but super soft and comfy. Ring Spun cotton is softer than regular at least at first. Over time all cotton will usually get a little thicker and stiffer but the ring spun is the best of the cotton options. Blends with ring spun are a good option too and often softer hand. Some people are allergic to polyester and will request all cotton but most of my clients prefer a blend. Polyester holds color better but can have reactions with high temperatures like glazing/sheen on 100% poly.
  3. I'm not a Graphtec user but when I contour cut on my Summa the registration marks and the cut all go at the same time not in two different sends. Just sounds like you are somehow sending two separate projects to the cutter but this could be different on your Graphtec though so take it with a grain of salt.
  4. Wildgoose

    New Member Hello!

    Welcome from Idaho
  5. I tend to run my cutter about 1/4 to 1/3 speed capability most of the time. I have actually had issues with messing up a big job because I had it set so high (just to try it out) it was throwing the vinyl back and forth to the point it folded poorly in the catch basket causing a crease which in turn caused feed issues and ended up wadded up before the project was complete. I look at it like why would I want to cause premature wear on a fine tuned machine. Take a corvette, CAN it run at 6500rpm? Yep. Will it do it for consecutive hours and days? Yep. Will a car that has been ran like that show signs of excessive wear as compared to one that has been treated differently after a few years? You better believe it. In my humble opinion this is true on all levels of cutters. My current cutter is Belgian made top of the line equipment and can take it but the time saved between running at 600 or 800 mm/sec vs 200 is negligible. I don't think running at super slow speeds is necessary unless you are pushing hard through something heavy like sandblast resist. I recommend starting out about there and you can start winding her up as you get some more experience and see what seems good to you. I agree with Slice on spending very much time dialing in the pen although if it has an actual pen attachment it should be capable of having the tip at roughly the same elevation above the material as the blade would be. It's a great idea to play around with pen and paper to be sure you completely understand the basic operation of the thing before you begin to cut. You will later have to dial in your blade exposure, down-force and offset once you are cutting actual vinyl.
  6. That falls under the Journey not the destination that matters type of out look. Happy travels and we look forward to the follow up. Most of us do our journey via the other forum members so it’s all good stuff.
  7. Maybe some more info to help diagnose. What specific Graphtec model are you using, What computer and software version as well.
  8. I am not a Graphtec user so I have limited help for you. According to this Cutting Master 4 should be compatible with both versions of AI. Do you have an older version of CM on your computer too? The instructions mention something to that affect that 3 has to be closed before 4 is open. Maybe that helps. https://www.graphtecamerica.com/cutting-master-4
  9. Yep. You made a great choice. The pro version has about everything you will need for a cutter. The highest level adds some printing tools for people with commercial printers mostly. VM is a really good program. I had prior experience with Adobe Illustrator so it is my tool of choice but looking VM over I would probably have went that route if I was starting from scratch. Plus I run a mac and fewer programs are mac compatible. I'd have to create a windows environment to run VM from my main workstation.
  10. For a starter press that looks like a decent machine, unsure about the knob on the back mine was o a screw on the top of the rotating part. Get hold of an infra-red thermometer gun and check around on the heated platen to see if it has any cool spots. Set the temp based on the cool spot if it has one or in the middle if it seems to be fairly evenly heated. The Chinese heat numbers will likely be off by quite a ways so don't be worried about that just record what it should be and make a little note and tape in on the side so you know what temp you want to use. SOME of those will let you adjust the readout, I never figured mine out on my cheap press. That one has springs to allow even pressure across the whole platen like Dakota mentioned (over center pressure) which most swingers do but not all clams. I had a clam for a while and burned my knuckles trying to get the HTV on in the right place and square to the shirt. You may find that you do far more heat press vinyl than other types once you get going. It's the coolest thing since Ice cream. <edit> I just took a second look and I think that adjustment wheel will be ok for a hobbyist. It's a big screw running down the shaft. The ones that I think were weaker are ones that adjust on a cantilever like several of the clam styles. Just my opinion but not a bad one to start out with. When you get your cutter up and start messing around be sure to remember to mirror your work on HTV because you are generally cutting on the adhesive side.
  11. Wildgoose

    VM Cut Node Edit

    Without some more information it's hard for us to know what you want to do. Bear in mind the "Cut" version is the most basic and is limited as to what you can do. Here is a comparison chart so you can see if maybe it's just a limit in your version or not. https://www.uscutter.com/static/PDFs/VinylMaster_Comparison.pdf
  12. Laura K, for faster responses you should sign up for the forum. All guest posts have to be pre-screened by moderators before they are allowed to be posted. It can take extra time and is more work for us on our end.
  13. Dnice If you sign up to the forum you will receive faster responses since all guest posts have to be approved by moderators
  14. Wildgoose

    Wet or dry method.

    On your question about wet app. Buy an app solution like Slice recommended. Making some home made crap might negate the adhesive of your vinyl. There are several and they are not expensive. I rarely wet app either. Takes about 5 times as long IMO. I sometime wet the application paper after I dry installed to help it pull off a little easier. If you do wet app, and I think it's great to learn so you can do it when you need to, use paper tape not clear.
  15. Wildgoose

    Wet or dry method.

    When I decided I was going to start actually applying my work as a business I picked a few friends and family who has businesses and did their vehicles and trailers as well as my own suburban as practice and did not charge them. I also had to re-do a couple that I messed up on clients vehicles when I was green. I chalked it up to the school of hard knocks/education.
  16. As Skeeter mentioned the connection cable should be NULL. There are two types one NULL (also called cross over) one straight.
  17. Here is a link to SignCut Pro. They have a good free trial period that I believe is full function during that time. I use the older Pro 1 version that has no design capability. They now have a new Pro 2 version that has some design capability. I own the dongle for Pro1 meaning I own it and don't have any more costs so I have not tried out the Pro 2. I do all my design work in Illustrator and just use Pro 1 to cut with. You could do the same with Inkscape (free) and a couple other vector programs. SignCut does cost so if it's strictly a hobby it is hard to justify. When I bought my first cutter it came with a free years subscription to SignCut and I got used to it and it's really an awesome tool. I think I paid around $400 for the lifetime dongle (USB Key) but was paying around $120 or $140 per year for a year or so then upgraded to a Summa 30" cutter and had to make a decision what software to use with it. I checked out Macsign and another that I can't recall. I like to design on my iMac but I usually cut over across the room from a windows laptop. Owning the dongle lets you load the program on any number of computers so I have the windows laptop out of the way and if/when it crashes I can roll the cutter across the room plug in and switch to my mac and keep working. That was why I ended up buying the lifetime dongle. You can only hop computers about 5 times without the dongle and after that you have to call in and get a permission number to move again. It's their way of controlling someone who want to load it on a bunch of computers under one license. The dongle must go with the cutter so only one user station is guaranteed where the subscription based plan has to have internet access to verify the license each time you fire it up. https://signcutpro.com
  18. If it's intermittent working then not I would tend toward the connection. Keep us posted
  19. You could also be fighting a crappy usb chipset. Those in the know on the forum will recommend the Tripp Lite version as the one that works. Cheaper ones are hit or miss. https://www.amazon.com/Tripp-Lite-Keyspan-High-Speed-USA-19HS/dp/B0000VYJRY/ref=sr_1_1?crid=18D84WUJ0GQN5&amp;keywords=tripp+lite+keyspan+high-speed+usb+to+serial+adapter%2C+pc+%26+mac&amp;qid=1552404433
  20. With the mac some of the previous advice will be moot. I run on mac but not on the SCALP program. Just an off the wall observation but the color in the first pic says red (maybe that the layer color?) and your design is black. You aren't by some odd chance sending a color that is not there? Probably not but it just popped into my head, that might not even be possible. Does your cutter have the option to make adjustments on the machine? Some do some don't. Those that do you can take a look at the baud rate and make sure it's the same as the software. Is the cutter showing up in devices in the finder when the usb is connected? If you keep getting skunked and need another option you can try the free trial of SignCut Pro. They are mac compatible and have a free trial period that you can use. I have recommended them to a few other mac users who may need to have some other option to trouble shoot. I use SignCut Pro 1 as my cutter interface and design in Illustrator. Both are costly to get set up in but the combination works well for me on the mac and it can also be used over on pc computers as well. They have live tech help if you do try them and can't get connected. Sure Cuts a Lot has some tech support on their site. I tried out the beta version long ago and they were reasonably efficient at responding back at that time. They have updated several times at this point so probably still have some tech help for you on that end as well. There are a few users here that use the program too being it is the only mac friendly option US Cutter packages. SignCut is a paid use rent program or a fairly expensive lifetime dongle. Not trying to steer you that direction just letting you know what's out there.
  21. Wildgoose

    New to vinyl. Need a cutter.

    Do you happen to have the whole Adobe suite or just Photo Shop? If you have the whole suite there is Adobe Illustrator with it that is even better than Inkscape although possibly a steeper learning curve. I am partial to Illustrator personally but recognize it's a PIA to learn and expensive if you don't already have it. Photo Shop 6 was about the same vintage as Illustrator 8 or 9 and I honestly don't know whether that was even bundled as a complete package back then. Illustrator Version 8 is the version that I down-save most of my cut files into because most cutting software accept the older format before they started getting into multiple art boards and stuff better. If you don't have it already I would probably not point you that way. The new stuff is all cloud based . I use an older version CS5 that I actually own so I don't have to pay rent. It's getting dated and has a few glitches since the latest updates to my mac but still getting me by fine. Good luck with your new source for fun, it's addicting! I started this out as a hobby and have totally enjoyed it. It has morphed into a side business we run from home to make extra cash.
  22. Wildgoose

    New to vinyl. Need a cutter.

    The cut version will run your cutter for general applications. There are probably some extra features that you'll have to live without and you'll stumble into those as you learn. The cut version is the budget limited version without a lot of bells and whistles so I suggest downloading a more robust design program to play with while you wait. Inkscape is free and a pretty solid vector program with all sorts of tutorials. You will likely want to be proficient in the design side of life as well as the rest.
  23. Wildgoose

    Minimum amount of movement

    I have a subscription to flexi but it's not currently on and I'm not wonderful with it but I think the answer you need is probably in this section that I found on a search. The info on the top right paragraph should be the way to determine what gets cut. Sounds like if it's not selected then it will cut in the order it was created. But if selected will cut a section then move to the next. You will probably need to experiment a little to figure out what works. Good luck and maybe someone will happen along who knows for sure.
  24. Jimmy you will have a better experience if you sign in to the forum. As it is a moderator has to approve each of your posts since you are a guest. Thank you.
  25. I think you can just get it looking like you want using the outline module and then convert it to curves and then just type in the size you want it to be up there in the dimensions box. Bear in mind that if you do this it will generally only let you adjust one direction and the other will automatically scale to keep the proportions constrained. You can unlock the constrained but then in your case it will stretch the offset lines and cause them to be irregular. Another option would be to first build the outer size exactly like you want it and then do inset lines to get the rest of the lines so they are keyed to the outer shape. Like most I keep a few tools handy. I am primarily an Adobe Illustrator guy but it's got a severe learning curve that I would not recommend to beginners. Inkscape is totally free and hard to beat as a learning tool.