Super Moderators
  • Content Count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

  • Days Won


Posts posted by Wildgoose

  1. On 6/27/2020 at 10:21 PM, Guest Boon’s Graphics & Design said:

    Ok I know I’m late to the party but I just got VinylMaster this week and going to do for somebody what no forum in any regards has done for me...Calibrate cutter Bla bla bla Yep pretty good advice...except I don’t think it solved many people’s issue especially mine. Could not for the life of me figure why I would set the image size only to find out when I sent it to the cutter that the dimensions had been changed by a half inch or more. Simple solution that noooooobody offers up. Set your page dimensions for the measurements you want to cut. Stretch and pull and tug on that image until it tells you the image has reached the page bounds. Shows up like a ruler . Now send that sucker to the printer and when you see that your measurements stayed intact you can thank me for giving you this fix in plain English 

    Boon, if your cutter is out of calibration with your cutting software this will not fix it. If this worked for you then your software must be right and your other original method of trying to size your work must have been flawed somehow or something else is wrong. Bottom line is if you make a square that is 12" and cut it and it's not 12" then you have a problem. If you made your page dimensions 12" and then stretched your square to match that (which it should already have been if you made it correctly) it shouldn't cut any different. If you make a square 12" and still have to stretch it out to fit your 12" page then you must not be understanding your design measurements. What Skeeter was describing is that you can cut a specific size and measure it and make calibrations to bring them into sync so that when you design something 12" that's what you get. If your other setup items are incorrect such as too much blade sticking out or too high uf cutting pressure it could effect the cut by causing extra drag (usually in front to back movement) which may throw your whole process into a real mess. This is why we always suggest dialing in the cutter before trying to figure out all the other intricacies. Exposed Blade is the very first thing then cutting pressure then cutting speed.

    • Like 3

  2. So he is saying use the low tack as a new carrier so you can cut right through your original without having to dork with the perf/kiss cut? Sounds plausible as the myth busters might say. I have done similar with cutting stencils. I usually had to use more than a single layer in that application to create enough stiffness and if you are doing lots of these that would become cost prohibitive.

    If you have the option, how about up-selling the perf cut so you still get your full price and sell them on the roll at regular price and then if they must have the perf maybe you can at least make a little more to offset the PIA factor. 

    • Like 1

  3. There may be another product identifier on the back or the bottom somewhere. I'm not having any luck with the numbers and name on the front panel. I used to have  P-Cut 1200 but when you looked on the back it was actually built by a company named "Creation" Your cutter is probably similar. Most cutter technology is old stuff and some generic drivers may work for you. 

  4. Does it work ever or never? Have you checked with Graphtec support. This is strictly a users forum so you will only be hearing from users and most do not run mac. I DO! but as mentioned earlier I don't run Graphtec so I don't have any solutions or experience. You might try the 1 week free trial of SignCut Pro and see if it will run and maybe rule out the cutter itself and narrow things down to the cutting master plug-in. SignCut Pro has both a plug-in for AI and also is a stand alone that lets you just open the program and open a cut file and cut it without having to work through AI if you choose not to. That's how I run so that I don't tie up my design ability while the cutter it working. 

  5. 4 hours ago, PM-Performance said:

    Gotcha, so the carrier isn't the issue, just the blade depth. Sorry I missunderstood 

    I think the blade depth currently is fine. I may try going back on force again to see if that helps and then maybe a better blade. 

    I think you'll be surprised at a Clean Cut Premium blade. When I bought my first one for my old P-Cut it was almost half the cutting force vs the cheap $5 blades I had been using. With the higher end cutters there is less difference. My Summa blades are only 36deg and cut like a hot knife through butter and are a little tougher than the CC blades (because of the lower cutting angle) so I stick with the factory blades for this machine but the Clean Cut are fantastic and a nice upgrade for the budget cutters. Your machine is sort of middle ground as far as budget but might have lower quality blades.

    • Like 1

  6. You are not understanding my comment. To set your blade properly regardless of cutting force/ pressure applied is to remove it from the machine and drag it with some force (not excessive) across a scrap piece of sign vinyl. The idea is to set it so that the blade can cut all the way through the vinyl but not all the way through the paper carrier too. Once you have this set then you re-install the blade holder back into the cutter and begin adjusting your cutting force from a light setting working into the cut until it cuts all the way through and leaves a light scratch on the paper carrier. It is fine to see a scratch on the carrier but you should not be able to feel it from the back side. When you get your blade set and cutting like this you should still be able to see some clear space between the blade holder and the actual surface of the vinyl. In other words when you are cutting (after having done the proper set up) your blade holder should still be slightly above the vinyl while the blade cuts. You will have to bend down and look at the job as it's cutting and perhaps shine a light from behind or something so you can see if there is a tiny bit of clear space. It will be less than a piece of paper wide but visible by the eye.  

    • Like 1

  7. 45 minutes ago, PM-Performance said:

    So I still struggle sometimes with HTV cutting with no mat and wanted to get some input from people with more experience. 

    Since moving to my new machine and having more pinch roller area, I feel I have more adjustability, but depending on the size of HTV I run and how big the cut is, I still am ending up with misscuts from the vinyl pulling up when the machine is moving the head from the outside in it seems. 

    Some things I have learned are:

    1. Spread the pinch rollers out as far as I can and keep the cuts within them
    2. 15" HTV seems to fit the rollers best if I put it to the far left of my machine and I just just barely get the pinchrollers on the very outside of the vinyl
    3. 12" HTV seems to fit the right most rollers the best. Again I can just barely get them to the outsides of the vinyl. 
    4. Unroll enough for my job so that I am not pulling from the roll directly. 

    Doing these steps makes life easier, but I still feel like I am having occasional problems. I am not sure if it is dependant on the cut, or just workable area. I would like to figure out what I am doing wrong as this just wastes material and it sucks stressing about finishing a job due to wasted material

    I do not prefer using the cutting mat most of the time just because I can just run a bunch of cuts in a row if needed without having to worry about setting the mat up for every cut (assuming all goes well). Another reason is because I need to pull my machine out another foot from the wall to run the mat and that can get annoying as well.

    Any suggestions for the pros on more efficient working with HTV when you do not have a machine with vacuum built in to suck it down?

    Have you tried out a premium blade? They cut with less force and therefore less likely to bunch vinyl ahead of the blade. Also when doing your blade set-up which consists of the tips Skeeter posts, some misunderstand so be sure that there is still a tiny amount of free space between the blade holder and the vinyl. With regular sign vinyl some people let the blade holder actually drag on the vinyl, this is not the best and it will cause problems with HTV due to the soft carrier. There should be just a sliver of light between the holder and the material when it's cutting. 

  8. 3 hours ago, sdgirl said:

    I will have to look into the thicker brand. I am not to found of the see through ones that I got!

    I think one was the Gildan 42000 if my memory is right. The others were from Conde specific for sublimation and are very thick but also pretty expensive comparatively. 

  9. 5 hours ago, sdgirl said:

    Thank you Wildgoose. Looking more into it, it seems to be more of a 2 step transfer paper type of thing. It isn't like the jetpro but it doesn't seem like the ink actually goes into the shirt like regular sublimation paper. I could be wrong , still looking into it. I have a few people that want pictures and designs that is just easier doing this way then with vinyl. 

    Yeah if you can convince them to that in order to get a good look they need to use a white polyester shirt it's fantastic. There are some thicker than normal options out there that don't feel too bad and aren't see though.  If you haven't done sublimation it enters completely into the poly fibers and there is zero hand it's pretty awesome. I had troubles with dark navy blues coming through as dark as I wanted for a particular client but I went the cheaper Epson printer way and it may have been that choice which caused me trouble. As long as the colors weren't too bold it was real handy for certain applications. 

  10. I don't know anything about that "for dark" stuff but as for shirts the higher the polyester content the better. The 65% will look washed out. That isn't always bad if you are going for the old shirt look. You can sublimate a dark color on anything lighter like black onto grey or red. Getting a picture quality like someones actual face or a real mountain scene you will want to be on white. I tried it out for a little while but just couldn't find a market in my area of influence. There are really fun things like flip-flops and key and dog chains and even clipboards that are probably big sellers for people with walk in brick and mortar stores. Mugs are a big market too. 

  11. Yeah Tessa you're going to have to help us out with more details. 

    PC or Mac?

    What is the name of the program that you are sending the file from to the cutter?

    What type of file are you trying to send? Did you make the file or buy it or what? 

    I would be very surprised if it was the Graphtec FC cutter that has the problem those things are tanks. Pretty sure we just have new user syndrome which is great news because you can fix that yourself. (meaning you can learn what's going on and be good to go)

    • Like 1

  12. For the 2 or 3 members who were recently in a topic called "help" with a brand new person asking for help. I had to eject them from the conversation and ban them due to immediate attitude, foul language and an apparent unwillingness to take well meaning help with even the slightest grain of salt. I do think sometimes you guys get a little tough on the Mac people and I AM a mac people so I can say that without it being racist. <sarcasm> He/they read the worst possible tone into Skeeters response and while I was trying to send a calm down and rethink your response post he/they posted an f bomb thus ending our association with them. That kind of thing doesn't belong on the forum and I am writing this hoping they read it and realize they probably just pooped in the best bowl of cheerios they could have and good luck finding helpful people on any of the other user forums. 

    • Like 5

  13. You basically just need to practice and be sure you understand the principal and process of moving your cutting head to where YOU want zero to be (X/Y location) Then be sure you know how to zero out those values and the machine at that point only knows it's now at the starting corner of the design. Most designs are not built with a square corner so you are really just telling the machine where the useable edge of the vinyl is and the graphics sits to the left of that point plus a little room for a weed border if you are using one (recommend). Your software should tell you how wide your overall design plus extra weed borders will be and you can easily use a loose ruler or tape to measure to the other side from your chosen zero point to be sure that you have a wide enough vinyl. 

    Higher end machines measure this on their own and place the cutting head in the correct spot and also send that info to the cutting software so it can calculate how many copies can be made in a given available area etc.... When I load my Summa it runs a length of vinyl out equal to about 1.5 times the width and does a side to side measure so it knows what area is available. If it finds the end of the roll before it reaches that 1.5 length it records that too so it knows exactly how much working space there is and sends all that info over to my cutting software (in my case that is SignCut Pro). When it reaches that point in the cut 1.5 times the width then it stops cutting for a sec and rolls out another length verifying that there is still vinyl and keeps the vinyl pulled off the roll so it's not trying to roll the vinyl while it's cutting and then goes back to work cutting the design. It will repeat this process over and over if I happen to be cutting something very long or making multiple copies that are many cards long. I input my design and tell it how many copies I want and push go because the head already settled on the zero point and it's ready as soon as it's done it's measure process. I assume the Graphtec is very similar and probably the Roland cutters as well. More budget friendly machine have you do this kind of thing manually but it's all the same in the end. 

    • Like 1

  14. 20 hours ago, PM-Performance said:

    Do you always try to keep the rollers to the edge of the HTV? Or doesnt really matter as long as you are cutting on the inside of the rollers?

    I do if possible. My old original P-Cut was interesting and had several varied sizes of grit areas so I had to get creative with it. I think as long as it's not causing potential wadding up it probably doesn't matter. If you are cutting regular sign vinyl with a good stiff carrier you can likely sneak out beyond the rollers as well. My Summa has such crimp force that it ruins the vinyl where it rolls so I always stay within just because of that. 

  15. Most people get the wrong impression about the blade exposed. The cutters use a pressure sensor to apply pressure to the blade holder to make the cut. When you adjust the pressure it either increases or decreases the pressure which dials in how deep the cut will go into the vinyl. If there is too much blade exposed it doesn't affect the depth of cut but does affect the quality of cut. Picture an exaggerated example where you had 6 Inches of the blade sticking out and dragging around trying to cut accurately and spin properly with the castor action developed by the blade tip. The closer you can get the blade holder to the vinyl without actually touching the vinyl the better. I like to just barely be able to see clear space between there when the blade is down and the cutter is cutting. If you have more sticking out it may affect the clean cuts and it also could cause the blade to accidentally cut all the way through when you load a different product in. Most vinyl is between 2 and 3 mil thick so once you get a blade exposure set it rarely needs to have that adjusted again until you need to change the blade or happen to try and cut something thicker like flock. (I set mine on 3 mil calendared cheap vinyl and then forget about it and just make pressure adjustments when needed). 

    On the pinch rollers, your new cutter unfortunately has only certain grit roller spots. I hate it when they do this. One of the Titans had similar and it really limits the usability. You need to try and cut inside the rollers if at all possible especially with HTV due to it's softer carrier. You will have to measure the various width of the rollers and decide where you will place it in the cutter in order to utilize the width the best. Higher end cutters have a full 6inch or more over on the right side for cutting scraps and you use that area for anything up to about 6 inches and then when you get wider vinyl you move the left side to the next roller and use the right side roller to adjust to exactly the useable width. Why these designers can't get that into their thick skulls I'll never understand. My old P-Cut that I learned on didn't have that but it had a couple wide areas out in weird spots that I could use similarly and was able to cut about any size. Some of the older cheap cutters had a grit bar practically across the whole machine with just a center spot for a bearing, that was a good idea too. Not sure why they would limit you like this. I can't see very well in the picture from the manual, maybe there are more areas than it looks like. 

    Screen Shot 2020-06-06 at 10.54.57 AM.png

    • Like 1

  16. Being a new model the forum has no specific idea what you should expect. Your video will be VERY helpful to other new users and also to the forum regulars. It sounds like the machine must not have a hold down fan (vacuum) like many of the higher end cutters. I cut a lot of HTV, are you having trouble with it bunching up at the blade? Or is it something else?  The softer carrier of many HTV products can definitely cause unusual circumstances. If you are having bunching you might double check that your blade is nice and sharp and that you aren't using any more pressure than you need to. Many people switch over to Clean Cut Blades that cut with about half the pressure of the cheap Chinese ones they ship with a lot of the budget cutters. They are especially helpful when dealing with HTV. 

  17. I guess I'm different than y'all. With all that shine and 3D I would hand trace that puppy on the inside lettering and then add the outline as a second color layer. It's only 6 letters and a small highlight. 

    • Like 1

  18. 29 minutes ago, Guest Ed M said:

    No, this is a used machine. It comes with....the machine. That's it. But I can pick it up pretty cheaply. I was hoping that the print function of the DSR would suffice. It seems to print to my Canon Inkjet just fine so I had my fingers crossed.

    Well I guess I can't concentrate to read what you actually wrote. You HAVE designer version so you should effectively have RIP. Sorry, my bad on that. For some reason my brain read that as letter version. 

  19. Do YOU get to choose the substrate or was this the customers choice? Sounds like it's not vinyl friendly and a more appropriate sign material would be in order. I don't think the Coro-plast sheets have issues at all so they must be made from another type of plastic. 

    • Like 1

  20. On 5/6/2020 at 9:38 AM, dvddvd said:

    I have some multi coloured tshirt t shirt designs. That I want to use with HTV

    I could cut them so each layer sits on top of each other.

    Or would I be better trying to keep the layers to a minimum.

    For example if the lettering has a drop shadow would it be better to cut the drop shadow as a solid black and then put the lettering on top?

    Or would it be better to cut just the shadow part and piece it around the lettering?

    The design has over 6 different layers that could be laid over each other for ease or each layer cut around each other...the cutter would have to be spot on so no gaps if slightly out..


    I know this is an older post but I just saw it. I do a lot of HTV and I would also recommend that you find a way to print this but should you ever decide to do multi-layered on a shirt it is best to layer the outlines and not stack the layers like sign vinyl. If you stack layers you with end up with a really thick and heavy feel. Most HTV can be layered but it just isn't a great way to go. The trick with layered outlines is designing with some overlap from each lower layer so you don't have the gaps that Dakota mentioned. HTV will do a lot of shrinking and distorting when you start to apply heat so the outlines method will help to keep your registration looking better. 

    A good example of this method is a two color name or number. If you place the main (inside) color down first and then apply the outline layer afterword it will end up with crisp perfect width outlines where if you try to actually layer whole layers like you would a sign then the lower (outside) outlines will end up slightly off in at least one direction and the problem is compounded if there are a long string of text like a player name. Back to the outline method the thicker you can get away with on the outline the better to allow some misalignment between the press cycles because your lower (inside) layer will shrink a bit but it works really good. I do thousands of dollars worth of high school and club sports uniforms and its very lucrative. 

    I design in Adobe Illustrator and it makes this method of design really easy. Any time you have an object with outlines adobe will extend the inside solid half the width of the outline when you convert from an object that has live outlines. Meaning that the outlines are added as a stroke and not as an offset line. I think for other programs you would have to experiment. I will attach a file with two versions of a number. One with just two stacked layers and one with the outline method so you can dissect them and see what I mean. 

    2 nines.eps

    • Like 1

  21. The only other alternative besides a high bond adhesive would be to do a flame treatment. Sounds crazy but you can actually take a torch and (very carefully) wand it over the recycled plastic  and then cover the whole area with a base color to build on. I have done this one time and it worked. Mine was on one of those folding A frame signs that was made from recycled plastic. 


    • Like 2

  22. I would also add that with your prior experience you already have a good idea of the basic mechanics of building a cut file. Learning new software is rarely fun but knowing what you are trying to accomplish you will pick it up a lot faster than some dude who has never done it at all. I use Adobe Illustrator that was a serious PIA to learn, like months of learning and years of later perfecting, when I have to try and get something done in Inkscape, corel or even vinyl master (although it's a lot more intuitive) I struggle because my brain is wired a certain way. You will probably go through that process to some degree. Slice loves SignBlazer and there are many who still use it but as new computer systems come out the likelihood of long term usability becomes more and more a question. Good luck on your endeavor, I have VM Pro that I have been slowly learning in order to be of some use as a moderator. Slowly. It is a really well thought out design and cut program. I don't know what things are missing in the base Cut version but the Pro version is great. (I still like AI best but I'm weird and I use a mac so there's that...)

    • Like 2