Blackjack2359

Spaces between vinyl pieces

13 posts in this topic

Can anyone tell me how to get rid of the spaces between two pieces of vinyl? After cutting different colors, I go and line them up, but sometimes there are spaces between the different colors of vinyl. If I try and get them closer, another area doesn't line up. Is there a setting in Vinylmaster Cut or within the cutter (MK-871-MK2) to correct that?

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Vinyl stretches and shrinks somewhat.  After it is cut, tension might be relieved and causing it to contract.  Precision can be lost.  Compounded it for heat transfer vinyl where the heat might cause distortion.  

Compensating in your design can help, designing with some give.  Sometimes you can make a base color and lay on top of it.  Cutting squares or diamonds as registration marks can help.

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17 minutes ago, Blackjack2359 said:

Can anyone tell me how to get rid of the spaces between two pieces of vinyl? After cutting different colors, I go and line them up, but sometimes there are spaces between the different colors of vinyl. If I try and get them closer, another area doesn't line up. Is there a setting in Vinylmaster Cut or within the cutter (MK-871-MK2) to correct that?

cut the bottom color to go all the way under the top color and layer - then no problem

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I am not layering vinyl. The design has several colors, so after they are cut, I just piece them together.

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in that case I would use a cast vinyland your cutter has to be very precise - cast will shrink like bivens said

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In Screen Printing there is a term ... "Trap" or "Trapping".

This is where the edges of 2 different colors overlap slightly.

One reason for this process is to prevent the shirt color from showing

between the colors.

When designing 2 or more color HTV files, I generally add a small

overlap for the same reason. This also reduces the layers as

double (or even triple) layers of HTV are avoided because of stiffness,

Body heat retention and "hand".

The Outline module in VinylMaster is good for adding this contour around

the individual color shapes and then weld together the Parent & Child Shapes.

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By using the Outline Module, it does create an outline around the shape, but it outlines the entire piece, not each piece. Plus, it only outlines it in ONE color, not the individual colors of each piece. So the Outline Module is worthless in this situation. I was hoping that there was a setting that would enlarge each piece slightly so that there was no space between each piece, but I guess that isn't possible.

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In my experience, unless for some reason you NEED a gap/space between your vinyl pieces you are much better off building your cut file so there is some overlap. Vinyl will shrink over time when in place (as well as on the carrier as mentioned above) and you will then have gaps whether you wanted them or not. With sign vinyl I think the industry standard is around 1/4" and with shirt vinyl it can be less, like 1/8". This presents a little more effort when designing so that you are compensating for these things but with practice you soon learn and it becomes second nature. 

Not sure if your current project is sign vinyl or HTV. When doing HTV I almost always try to place the outlines as a top layer even though logic may dictate to just place them behind as a larger simple underlay. Depending on the specific situation the outline method generally gives more accurate registration so that the outline looks the same all the way around. With a heat press everything changes every time you throw heat to the shirt and getting the top layer to match exactly can be troublesome. Some jobs it is easier to do it with a background layer and live with the potential shrinkage. 

With regular sign vinyl it may take the use of some registration marks to use in aligning all your layers since the edge you were using previously is now 1/4" off to allow for the overlap.  Using an MH model cutter you will also have to contend with cutter inaccuracy and an overlap will help there too. Sometimes if something is not quite perfect you can CAREFULLY trim an offending edge with an X-acto knife. Most of us carry them and a straight edge along with the rest of our install tools, especially easy on glass. If its on someones new $40k vehicle the CAREFULLY part adds a few exclamation points and might be better left imperfect. 

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Wildgoose, I am using Oracal 651, so yes, I am using sign vinyl. I have no idea how to modify my design so each colored section has overlap. Is there somewhere in particular I can look in order to produce this overlap you are talking about?

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651 is a calendared vinyl and will shrink more so than cast (751, 951). I'm not familiar with VinylMaster but it sounds like you have the tools you need with the outline module. My guess is your image is a group, you'll need to ungroup it and break out individual colors then select each section one at a time to do the outline thing.

If you could post the file you're having issues with people might be able to give you a more step by step instruction set.

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Blackjack unfortunately for a lot of the applications it's actually a manual build process. It is relatively simple most of the time and would involve grabbing a node or two and manually dragging them under the adjoining color layer. Some times you can offset the entire size of an object to achieve this super simple but each job poses it's own specific challenges. Usually you can mentally think through the build process and determine which will be the top layer and what it will take on the lower tier elements to be tucked under properly.  

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Don't know about Vm 'CUT' but Vm PRO's OUTLINE MODULE will

absolutely do what you are trying to accomplish.

The information on 'How' should be found in the following videos;

 

 

Check FutureCorp's VinylMaster YouTube Channel for tons of other Tutorials...

youtube.com/user/futurecorporation/videos

 

 

 

 

 

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Outline mode will do most of the typical layered lettering and that sort of thing for you. I guess what I was talking about is more along the lines of the things that aren't consistent. I made up a fake job and took a couple screen shots. There is a logo with three colors and a few letters. The colored elements all touch and it will be complicated to get a good match without some overlaps but you can't offset the whole graphic. One pic is the overall look. One is overall look in wireframe and one that shows a close up of grabbing a node with the node edit tool and dragging it over so it will allow a single side to overlap below another. In this case the Blue under the black since the black triangle will need to go in the same layer that the letters are in and on top of the Blue and Red. You would also need to drag the red over under the black and also the red up under the blue to create overlaps in the correct places. Often you will need to add some nodes (I believe in VM to add or remove nodes you double click the line or node while in node edit mode). Such as at the top of the black triangle you can't simply drag the blue corner over so you would add a node (or two) and allow for some overlap. If you do this method you definitely want to use some alignment marks to be sure each layer is going to interact with the others properly. 

Test VM.png

Wire.png

drag node.png

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