hzurell

Problems with my cutter scratching vinyl horribly

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Hello everyone,

I am new to this forum and wanted to reach out and see if anyone could help me figure out a problem I am having with my vinyl cutter. Unfortunately I did not purchase it here and went for a package deal on ebay when I purchased. Here is a picture of what the machine is doing along with a picture of the machine itself. This machine is a MH series cutter I got as a package deal w/ vevor heat press. Any ideas? I am so frustrated.  

Any ideas of what would cause this and how to fix this? The cutter protection strip was loose I cleaned that up real good and reattached with double sized taped. I have readjusted the blade a million times. It really seems like the the carriage is not raising up in between cuts like it should so it is dragging the blade. 

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12 minutes ago, bikemike said:

How think is the tape you used?

What it is cutting don't look right as well.

It is the thin double sided tape that I use to tape the cutter strip back down.  The font I was using on the cut was Algerian and the vinyl it is cutting on is oracal 651. 

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how are you determining what is the right blade exposure?   we have a thread under instructional contributions that described how to set the blade depth.    when the machine is off does the carriage arm move up and down without restrictions?   what does the seller say about the problem?

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4 minutes ago, Dakotagrafx said:

how are you determining what is the right blade exposure?   we have a thread under instructional contributions that described how to set the blade depth.    when the machine is off does the carriage arm move up and down without restrictions?   what does the seller say about the problem?

I have adjusted the blade exposure and no matter what the depth is it does this. The seller has not responded to me and doesn't sell this particular item anymore, of course.  When the machine is off the arm goes up and down just fine. I don't think it's the arm is going up and down when it's running though because it's dragging the blade. 

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9 out of 10 issues like this we see with new people turns out to be blade exposure as in way too much blade and the reason we posted the instructions on setting properly.  if it is dragging on the vinyl the 3 things would be the blade exposure, a solenoid dragging (ruled out by you saying it goes up and down easily when turned off, or the cutting strip being raised or uneven which could occur unless the double sided tape is paper thin.   there was some sells until recently on ebay selling mh cutters with uscutter images and descriptions that should have been addressed by now.  it was unknown if they was trying to resell uscutter equipment or copying the information including the description of greenstar vinyl which is a private label vinyl for uscutter.   unscrupulous dealers on ebay is nothing new if the buyer is not careful.   
how exactly did you set your blade depth?

 

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not sure what the machine is yet but it isn't a refine mh series like uscutter sells

update: the machines appears to be a seiki plotter - it that the drivers you are using and with what cutting program??

 

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1 minute ago, Dakotagrafx said:

9 out of 10 issues like this we see with new people turns out to be blade exposure as in way too much blade and the reason we posted the instructions on setting properly.  if it is dragging on the vinyl the 3 things would be the blade exposure, a solenoid dragging (ruled out by you saying it goes up and down easily when turned off, or the cutting strip being raised or uneven which could occur unless the double sided tape is paper thin.   there was some sells until recently on ebay selling mh cutters with uscutter images and descriptions that should have been addressed by now.  it was unknown if they was trying to resell uscutter equipment or copying the information including the description of greenstar vinyl which is a private label vinyl for uscutter.   unscrupulous dealers on ebay is nothing new if the buyer is not careful.   
how exactly did you set your blade depth?

 

Okay got ya. I bought my vinyl cutter last April on ebay, it was a package deal with a 8 in 1 heat press. The heat press was kinda of crappy I actually bought a new one 2 months ago. I watched a video on adjusting the depth and from what I have read rule of thumb is 1/2 of the thickness of a credit card is how far the blade should stick out. Of course that depends on the vinyl. I take it out of the holder to adjust it. I've always had problems with this machine honestly, it's never been great. I use my cricut for smaller projects, mugs, shirts, stuff like that. Can't use it for big wall and car decals though. 

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5 minutes ago, Dakotagrafx said:

not sure what the machine is yet but it isn't a refine mh series like uscutter sells

update: the machines appears to be a seiki plotter - it that the drivers you are using and with what cutting program??

 

Yes that is correct, those are the drivers they sent me, the cutting programs they ended up sending me was Sign Master. Art Cut is what came with it but that didn't work worth a damn so they emailed me the filed for sign master and that is what we ended up getting to work on the computer and were able to get the plotter installed. 

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and that is about 10 times too much blade exposure - here it the link to the instructions I keep trying to get you to follow:  

 

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6 minutes ago, hzurell said:

Yes that is correct, those are the drivers they sent me, the cutting programs they ended up sending me was Sign Master. Art Cut is what came with it but that didn't work worth a damn so they emailed me the filed for sign master and that is what we ended up getting to work on the computer and were able to get the plotter installed. 

artcut never worked right but is free for them to give away - there are several links on our forum that show the download for signblazer and pretty sure it worked with the seiki cutter - although it won't fix your problem with the blade dragging the program even though 8 years since update is very capable
 

 

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It may be worth mentioning the person I bought from on ebays sellers name was/is bestfashionitem. 

I originally paid attention to that 1/2 of a credit card but honestly a lot of what I have done with that machine was just adjust a little and do a test cut. I will look at that link for setting the blade depth and perhaps I should go ahead and place an order for a replacement cutter strip in case that is the issue.

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I just thought of something else that I wonder if it may be a factor in my troubles. I am still using the blades that came with the machine as well. For all I know they were used. I am going to buy a new pack on US Cutter right now and try that and see if that combined with new cutting strip and getting the blade depth adjusted really well will fix my problem. Thank you for all of your help @Dakotagrafx! I will let you know what happens. 

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Late to the party, but you do have way way way too much blade exposed.

I am not familiar with the SignMaster program.  Do you have to register it, and if so, have you?

Looking at your pictures up top, it looks like you have about three layers going on.  You might post up a copy of the file so that someone can take a look at it.

And welcome aboard, glad to have you here.

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3 hours ago, Cal said:

Late to the party, but you do have way way way too much blade exposed.

I am not familiar with the SignMaster program.  Do you have to register it, and if so, have you?

Looking at your pictures up top, it looks like you have about three layers going on.  You might post up a copy of the file so that someone can take a look at it.

And welcome aboard, glad to have you here.

The sample I posted above was just a sample text (it says "Interstellar") in algerian font. I was just trying to cut something that I could post on the forum to get some feedback on. The same thing has happened on the test from the machine where is cuts a triangle. I put that software on almost a year ago so I don't quite remember but I think I did register it. 

I am new to this forum but not brand new to cutting vinyl. I have been doing it on and off for the past year, more on for the past few months but I have been using my cricut machine more since it worked better. Now I just have demand for vehicle decals and signage and and can't use that small machine for that. Like I said I have had problems with this machine from the get and have adjusted the blade way down because I knew it was out way too much. Do you guys think that it could be an issue with that software even though I'm getting issues on the test cuts run from the panel on the machine? 

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On 3/11/2018 at 8:46 PM, hzurell said:

The sample I posted above was just a sample text (it says "Interstellar") in algerian font. I was just trying to cut something that I could post on the forum to get some feedback on. The same thing has happened on the test from the machine where is cuts a triangle. I put that software on almost a year ago so I don't quite remember but I think I did register it. 

I am new to this forum but not brand new to cutting vinyl. I have been doing it on and off for the past year, more on for the past few months but I have been using my cricut machine more since it worked better. Now I just have demand for vehicle decals and signage and and can't use that small machine for that. Like I said I have had problems with this machine from the get and have adjusted the blade way down because I knew it was out way too much. Do you guys think that it could be an issue with that software even though I'm getting issues on the test cuts run from the panel on the machine? 

Hello there, welcome to the site, lots of great help on here, Well i can tell you just from talking with others that this is lot more machine then the circuit you have been using for a year.

The blade height has to be 100% on the machine your using.. Take a piece of Vinyl your going to use. and set the blade height. try it with the test square, if it cuts more then just the vinyl and cuts into the backing, you need to lower the height of the blade. Try again, Re peat until it doesn't cut the backing... That picture you posted looks horrible.. With the machine off make sure the blade is moving up and down as it should. if its moving up and down it should not be cutting anything except the design your trying to cut. The Software. if its not registered/paid for they can and will put lines in whatever your cutting. some software is totally free to use to try out but once you try to cut something it will put lines all in it. its there way of keeping you from using there software for free.

I have a SC2 cutter and it came with Vinylmaster and it wasn't what l liked at first but now i can design in it in no time. Sure cuts a lot is another good one its $60 for the basic one. FYI. My force is only at 102 for oracal 651 and I lower it down to 90 or so for HTV. that is how mine cuts best. everyone is different. also my Speed is down to 100 seemed to help a lot. and still cuts plenty fast for me. If your trying to run a business you should spent a lil more money, I was going to buy the same machine and people here talked me out of it.

Good luck. maybe you could post a short video of it cutting something.

 

 

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You cutter is slashing. There are so many different things that can attribute to this ... blade sticking out too much, serial vs. usb, wrong driver, memory buffer not happy, etc.

If you know you have a good blade depth, then it's time to try something else ...

try testing it using a different font, or a different word, some thing smaller, a piece of clipart, or draw some random geometric shapes, etc.
try switching from usb to serial (keyspan if necessary)
try a completely different usb cable
try a short usb cable
try a different cutting software
try rebooting your computer
try a different computer
try welding everything

You can work on blade pressure later if you don't think it's cutting through the vinyl enough, or too much.

*Every once in a while my cutter will do it too, don't know what really causes it, but I will restart my machine, re-import image, or try a different font (to test), etc. Basically if it's something that I absolutely have to cut, then I will work and rework until something works right.

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I will throw something else in here for you.  Do you have a pen tool for this machine?

If you do, use that and do your experiments with so that you are not wasting vinyl.

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You said the blade holder goes up and down freely when powered off, but does it go up when you power on the machine?

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7 hours ago, darcshadow said:

You said the blade holder goes up and down freely when powered off, but does it go up when you power on the machine?

No it does not go up when I power the machine on....

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9 hours ago, Cal said:

I will throw something else in here for you.  Do you have a pen tool for this machine?

If you do, use that and do your experiments with so that you are not wasting vinyl.

I do have the pen tool, so I have thought about testing that out. 

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16 hours ago, haumana said:

You cutter is slashing. There are so many different things that can attribute to this ... blade sticking out too much, serial vs. usb, wrong driver, memory buffer not happy, etc.

If you know you have a good blade depth, then it's time to try something else ...

try testing it using a different font, or a different word, some thing smaller, a piece of clipart, or draw some random geometric shapes, etc.
try switching from usb to serial (keyspan if necessary)
try a completely different usb cable
try a short usb cable
try a different cutting software
try rebooting your computer
try a different computer
try welding everything

You can work on blade pressure later if you don't think it's cutting through the vinyl enough, or too much.

*Every once in a while my cutter will do it too, don't know what really causes it, but I will restart my machine, re-import image, or try a different font (to test), etc. Basically if it's something that I absolutely have to cut, then I will work and rework until something works right.

Great suggestions. I am going to try different software. I have not tried a serial cable. I have tried tried different cuts, different fonts, shapes, tests, vinyls, pictures, texts, rebooting, etc. I will try different software and a serial cable to start. I have new blades and cutter protective strip on the way to see if that could be if that might be the issue. Worst case I get a new machine. Maybe going cheap on a Seiki machine was a big mistake. 

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If it doesn't go up when you turn power on you have a hardware fault. Most likely a fried Z-chip or possibly a bad solenoid.

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1 hour ago, hzurell said:

Great suggestions. I am going to try different software. I have not tried a serial cable. I have tried tried different cuts, different fonts, shapes, tests, vinyls, pictures, texts, rebooting, etc. I will try different software and a serial cable to start. I have new blades and cutter protective strip on the way to see if that could be if that might be the issue. Worst case I get a new machine. Maybe going cheap on a Seiki machine was a big mistake. 

Cheap is not always the best value, that's for sure. Problem is it's a huge jump from the multi-levels of the Chinese cutters up to a brand name. Many have had success with the budget models but they are much more finicky and have a myriad of personality disorders. 

If you are going to try out new software you can get a free trial of SignCut Pro and they have live tech support if you run into trouble with hook up. It's a good solid performer as far as cutting and I use it daily. At least that will remove that possible cause from the equation. 

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11 minutes ago, Wildgoose said:

Cheap is not always the best value, that's for sure. Problem is it's a huge jump from the multi-levels of the Chinese cutters up to a brand name. Many have had success with the budget models but they are much more finicky and have a myriad of personality disorders. 

If you are going to try out new software you can get a free trial of SignCut Pro and they have live tech support if you run into trouble with hook up. It's a good solid performer as far as cutting and I use it daily. At least that will remove that possible cause from the equation. 

Awesome thanks so much. I will try that software to see if that does anything. I went on the to the Seiki forums and seems this is a common problem with their plotter going back 8 years. I have a feeling I will have to replace it but first I will see if I can fix it. I wanted to get into vinyl cutting and found a package on ebay last year that had the plotter and a 5 in 1 heat press, not 8 in 1 like I previously said. It seemed like a good deal at the time. Live and learn. The cricut is great for my small projects like decals, mugs, shirts but I need the plotter for my big projects for sure like the signs, walls decals and vehicle signage I am getting into now. I am so thankful I found this forum. All of you have been fantastic, and i will be sure to ask for advice if I do buy a new one. 

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