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First of all, thank you in advance for any input you can share.

I'm running a LaserPoint II cutter, with the SCALP 3 program.  Not a very big fan of that program, but it's what I have for the time being.

I noticed when doing a 3 layer windshield decal that when I tried to lay the colors on top of each other, that they do not line up correctly.

On the program, everything is straight and centered.  However after cut, and application time, it's off.  If the right side is centered, the left side will drift down to the right.  If I center the right side, it drifts up to the left on the left side.  If I center the middle of the image, either side will drift one way or the other.  I've only noticed this issue on larger (30" +) images.  I can cut shorter or smaller images, and they will layer just fine.  

Yes I use registration marks, and they do not line up either.

What I do not know for sure is if it's the cutter giving me the issue, or if it's the program that is giving me the issue.  I tend to think it's probably the cutter, but cannot say for sure.

Sorry I do not have any images to share with anyone regarding my issue.  I did a work around to complete the job.  It's not the best work I've done, but it's acceptable for the purpose.   I didn't snap any photos of it while it was on the layout table.   

 

 

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Yep Cutter. I'm not a fan of SCALP either but this is a tracking issue for sure. If you want to do an experiment the next time you have a longer cut try out the free 7 day trial of SignCut Pro and use a feature they call step-by-step cutting. It will cut everything within a given (user defined ) length. So if you have a 36" decal you can set it to cut everything in say a 10" or 12" area and it will do all that before moving on to the next 12" and so on. They have a little preview that will show you how the cut is going to progress before you actually send it to the cutter so you can view it and see if the stops are going to cause an issue or be in a good spot and adjust as necessary. This will help with tracking. Can't say it will eliminate the problem because it won't but it will help you get some types of work done. It doesn't work very well with things that have large amounts of small text. The cutter isn't accurate enough to jump around and re-connect all the little lines that it left hanging at that 12" zone but for something like a long oval or square or a very simple graphic it will let you get it done. I used that feature often when I ran a P-Cut which is a similar cutter to yours. Higher end machines just don't have those problems and I forget how frustrating that was. 

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My guess i think its the cutter,I use scalps4pro and love it and never have an alignment issue with layers ever.I use ai cs6/cc with scalps and everything comes out perfect unless i screw up on my end..

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On 9/16/2016 at 9:43 PM, busterbay said:

My SC will "drift" a smidge on large decals - My Titan's do not - both are running SCALP 3 - most likely it is your cutter.

 

 

On 9/17/2016 at 0:26 AM, Wildgoose said:

Yep Cutter. I'm not a fan of SCALP either but this is a tracking issue for sure. If you want to do an experiment the next time you have a longer cut try out the free 7 day trial of SignCut Pro and use a feature they call step-by-step cutting. It will cut everything within a given (user defined ) length. So if you have a 36" decal you can set it to cut everything in say a 10" or 12" area and it will do all that before moving on to the next 12" and so on. They have a little preview that will show you how the cut is going to progress before you actually send it to the cutter so you can view it and see if the stops are going to cause an issue or be in a good spot and adjust as necessary. This will help with tracking. Can't say it will eliminate the problem because it won't but it will help you get some types of work done. It doesn't work very well with things that have large amounts of small text. The cutter isn't accurate enough to jump around and re-connect all the little lines that it left hanging at that 12" zone but for something like a long oval or square or a very simple graphic it will let you get it done. I used that feature often when I ran a P-Cut which is a similar cutter to yours. Higher end machines just don't have those problems and I forget how frustrating that was. 

 

On 9/18/2016 at 5:55 PM, Primal Decals said:

My guess i think its the cutter,I use scalps4pro and love it and never have an alignment issue with layers ever.I use ai cs6/cc with scalps and everything comes out perfect unless i screw up on my end..

Thanks for the help all.

I was leading toward the cutter myself, simply because on the program screen everything is straight and centered.  I may have to try goose's idea, and see if that will help.  I do not have any large multi layer jobs anytime soon, so It'll be a little bit before I can test that theory.

I tell ya this cutter is killing me... It's mostly my fault, I did research on what was out there, this was the one within my budget.  I'm going to start trying to save for another cutter I can use (higher end cutter) and keep this one for simple 1 color jobs, or smaller 2 layer jobs.  I do enjoy the work, and look forward to getting better at it.  

I appreciate all your input, and will use this knowledge for a good use LOL... 

 

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