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Showing content with the highest reputation since 02/23/2011 in Posts

  1. 22 points
    We all need reminded from time to time to respect each other. we all have different ways of doing things and no one way is right. There is usually many ways to accomplish the same goal. With open discussion and respecting each other the brain storming done on here has solved many issues and helped many people accomplish their goals. with respect shown the communication flows freely - sometimes it helps now sometimes it may help someone later with a similar issue. when respect isn't shown all communication stops and nothing gets accomplished. we learn from each other and make us all stronger as a whole if we work together. I am no different than anyone else and also need this reminder from time to time so thought to post it to remind myself and others. peace out my friends
  2. 16 points
    so for my 1000th post i wanted to say thank you to all the great people here to lend a hand in helping noobs like me.. I was lost for awhile until i found this great forum filled with great people.. I have come along way in this type of work and it is from learning on my own and as well as alot of help form the people here.. Also wanna say thank you to US Cutter for having this forum.. You people are awesome and i consider this forum a second family.. Thank all of you from the bottom of my heart
  3. 16 points
    The purpose of this forum is to provide a friendly public place for people interested in vinyl cutting and related activities, as well as people who are just a fan of USCutter, to gather and share their work or ask/answer questions posed by your fellow vinyl cutting enthusiasts. Generally, people are in the vinyl cutting business for profit or to promote them-self or their organization. As such, there is a line that we must not cross when it comes to what we post here. I have noticed there has been a lot of confusion and some outright intentional ignorance of the rules regarding copyrighted material. The simple answer is that if you did not personally create an image then you need to keep it private and do not advertise that you can get it for someone. If you want to publicize it for others to use then reference the original creator so that people can get it from the source. If you do not know the original creator then you should not be posting it in a place that encourages others to use it, who will then claim they got it from you, which is obviously a problem if you did not create it. There is nothing wrong with finding an image and using it for yourself, but if you are posting it in a public forum and encouraging others to take it when it does not belong to you in the first place then you are robbing the original creator of the credit they deserve and you are deceiving others into thinking you yourself are the one who made it. If the original creator gets no credit then they get no repeat business. Lying on the forum, or feigning ignorance, about a copyrighted item you are posting is never going to fly. So, please do not do this. All reports are thoroughly investigated. So, pretending not to know the image you are posting belongs to someone else just wastes everyone's time and gives everyone a bad experience. We want everyone to be able to enjoy the forum. but that is not possible if there is any illegal activity going on here. If you are caught continuously posting/offering copyrighted material after having already been warned then you could lose your right to post entirely. This might seem strict, but it is standard policy with any copyrighted material anywhere in the US. Please keep these things in mind. If you have any questions about this feel free to ask.
  4. 16 points
    I was just notified that John had a heart attack last night and will be undergoing surgery today. I'm sure some extra prayers will speed his recovery! Thanks Jenny
  5. 15 points
    A simple sign I made for use around the shop. I put it on a 18x25 corplast (cheap!) and already used it today. SizeChart.EPS SizeChart.EPS
  6. 15 points
    I'm Dan Payton and I approve this message...
  7. 14 points
    Hello and welcome to the forums! We are all here to help each other with all sorts of questions and comments, but in order to get started you will need to become a full fledged member. You begin as rank of Newbie but you can graduate much easier than with most schools! You simply need to pass the test of respect for the forum Due to the constant spammers in the world we have created a new rule that still allows new members to create new posts, but those posts will need to be approved by a moderator before they are saved as a public post for others to view and reply to. This includes any kind of post, whether you create a new topic or your first post is just a reply to someone else's post. This will help weed out a lot of the spammers and scammers that like to post unhelpful things like ads and general spam, and this should make for a cleaner spam free forum. There is more good news though! We have lots of people who help moderate these forums, including our very own USCutter tech support as well as other forum users such as yourself! They have chosen to go out of their way and assist in keeping this a functional and useful tool for everyone that comes here. So, a thank you and big respect to those Moderators! Please keep in mind, if you are having trouble with using the forums there are always friendly fellow forum members who are willing to sort out the problem for you. Thanks so much for coming here! And we hope you enjoy this free useful tool for all of your projects and questions.
  8. 13 points
    Just wanted to thank all the vetrans on our forum and else where also. Also those still serving and especially those that gave the ultimate sacrifice for our freedoms.
  9. 13 points
    1. Create your print ready file 2. Locate user Dakotagfx on this forum to obtain his email address to request quote 3. Send payment in advance. (I used paypal) 4. Email print ready file to Dakotagfx 5. Receive confirmation and proof, SAME day 6. Sit back a day or two for shipping 7. Open package in awe of a quality printed and cut decal order 8. Deliver finished products with invoice to your customer and receive an instant order for more! Thanks Scott!
  10. 13 points
    dude, marks mom gave birth and the first thing they heard when he looked at a chart was "Times Roman Bold".
  11. 13 points
    My suggestion is to start over. This time in Inkscape. Build it in vector from the start. Here's a leg up on the shapes. It's pretty close to the original, not exact. Open it in Inkscape and import your original. Line them up on top of one another and you can easily see where you had your text placed before. Add your Fonts back in and you're good to go. ReworkedLogo.svg
  12. 13 points
    Wow, thanks, that's really helpful. 1) The customer was supposed to provide me with a list of shirt sizes so I could order them. The customer kept procrastinating delaying and went out and bought the shirts at Wal-Mart herself when I told her it was too late for me to order them. 2) Going the extra mile for a customer is a good thing, not something to criticize someone for. 3) It wasn't my choice. 4) Nothing you said helps explain why the letters fell off and what I can do to keep them from falling off a second time, nor do your comments serve any useful purpose other than trying to make yourself appear superior. 5) Refer to #4.
  13. 12 points
    I was picked to represent all the Vietnam Veterans of America and to accept an award for the Welcome home that Vietnam Vets never got. It was a awesome honor and I felt both Honored and Humbled. It was at the First Academy in Orlando and attended by around a 1,000 people I know there is a bunch of military guys on here both past and present hope you enjoy the video ...
  14. 12 points
    For a friend of the family and his little one
  15. 12 points
    Yup I couldn't resist, will wear it at the next WWIA Event Corvette Show in October ...
  16. 12 points
    stacey and I decided to donate this one for the veterans . . . they got a new trailer and wanted the sign on the back before they head out to the rest area on the upcoming holiday weekend. second one his dad has an old painted sign that was in bad shape and wanted to recreate the fairly crude sign so that is what we did
  17. 12 points
    We recently had a fellow biker die, his name was Howard Ogaard, also known as Howie, but mostly known as Santa. He was a hardcore biker, a navy vet, but he was a loving, gentle soul, he was known thru town as Santa, cuz he did the santa gigs at the malls and charity fundraisers. Tons of people knew and loved him. Anyway i did a custom etched mirror to give to his wife and son... Howard's saying was "Remember Everyone Dies, But Not Everyone Lives. Make Some Memories and Share Some Memories. Expect the Unexpected"
  18. 11 points
    There are a lot of people here asking for insight on how to price particular jobs, so here is a fool-proof way to gauge what you should be charging for a job. This is going to be long-winded, but there is a lot of information to consider. You could ask 20 different members what they would charge for the same sign, and you will most likely get 20 different answers. The reason: OVERHEAD. Everyone has different needs, and they charge accordingly. You need to calculate what it really costs you to make the sign other than materials & time. I was very guilty of this in the beginning. I knew what it cost to make the sign, so I would find out what comparable shops in the area would charge. I would drop my price to get the job, but I also did it because I felt guilty for charging so much, knowing what the materials cost. What I didn't know, is that I was leaving a lot of things out of consideration. EVERY SHOP IS DIFFERENT. You need to figure out what you need to make, to cover expenses and make a profit on each job. Its nice to do things for free or at cost, but you are in business to make money, right? So here we are. You have a customer that wants a nice, big 4' x 4' window graphic. Single color vinyl, and the old graphics need to be removed. Cake job right? These are my bread and butter jobs. Customer says that he wants a proof and an estimate prior to signing off on the job. The proof, a no brainer. But how much am I going to charge? You need to know your shop rate first. How much is my time worth? What bills do I need to cover? Am I paying myself? Am I paying employees? These are all important things to know before you ever give a number to a customer. First off, find out all of your monthly expenses pertaining to your business, MINUS MATERIAL, this is charged seperate. (spreadsheet attached at the bottom) **Home Businesses** - the best way to figure out how much of your home expenses to include in your business expenses, divide the square footage of area in your home devoted to your business, and divide that by the square footage of your home. that will give you a percentage, i.e: 250 sq ft / 1000 sq ft = .25 or 25%. This is not exact when it comes to things like electric and water, but it will get you in the right ballpark. Monthly Overhead: These items should include Rent, utilities, equipment loans, services (accountant, courier, cleaning etc.) Subcontractors, licenses, association dues, equipment servicing, software purchases/subscriptions, vehicle expenses/gas, taxes, insurance, & payroll. Now this is just a short list of major expenses incurred, that most might forget about that aren’t doing this every day to make a living. As an example, mine comes out to $2,415.00 Monthly Gross Wages: If you’re paying yourself too, (which you should) decide an amount you'd like to make per week, add 30% to cover taxes, and multiply that by 4.34 (the average number of weeks per month: 52 divided by 12) and you have your average monthly salary plus taxes. So, I pay myself (relatively cheaply) $500 per week + 30% = $650 x 4.34 = $2821.00 Add that all up, and that is your monthly "nut" that needs to be covered before you ever make a profitable cent. I know I haven’t covered material, but that comes into play later. So I need to cover $2,415 + $2,821 = $5,236 every month before I am profitable. Calculating Your Shop Rate: So now we have a good idea of what I actually have in the way of expenses, and I really need to make more signs to cover all that! Speaking of making signs, how many hours a week would you say you actually devote to actual sign production? These are your actual Billable Hours. this is a vital piece of information in calculating what your shop rate is. With a little bit of time, you can figure out how much time you are actually spending making signs. This isn’t difficult, it just takes a little discipline to jot down the actual time you start and stop while working on signs for a typical week. its not uncommon for a smaller shop (like myself) to have one person doing everything and only spend 15-20 hours a week actually producing signage. Most of us are not as productive as we would like to think we are, especially if you have a home business, all sorts of distractions get in the way. That’s part of life. But be diligent with your time tracking to find out how much time you actually spend producing products. On any given week, I spend 18-22 hours making signage. So we'll use 20 hours as the benchmark. Now, I don’t know about you, but I like my time off with family and friends. That needs to be accounted for. I take about 3 weeks off combined thorough the year for holidays, birthdays, and vacations. That Gives me 49 production weeks per year. 20 x 49 = 980 Annual Billable Hours. We're almost there! Its all a "simple" math equation now! Monthly overhead: $5,236.00 x 12 months = Annual Overhead $62,832.00 Divide your Annual Overhead: $62,832.00 / by your Annual Billable hours: 980 = Hourly Rate Before Profit $64.11 Add your profit percentage: 25% (you decide what you should add on) to your hourly rate: $64.11 = $80.14 - Hourly Shop Rate Now you know what each hour you are making signs should cost. Don’t sell yourself short, this is a service you are providing, and most of your price is going to be time, not materials. Back to the Customer Sign: Time: So, 4' x 4' single color vinyl sign with removal of existing and new installation. Simple logo and text design, time - 30 min No revisions, customer gives ok Set up cutter & time to complete cut - 20 min Weed & Mask - 20 min Travel to & from worksite - 15 minutes to, 15 minutes from Time to remove existing graphics & clean window - 60 min Set up and install new graphic - 30 min So The total time on this sign is 3 hours and 10 minutes x Shop Rate of $80.14 = $253.78 in labor Materials: ORACAL 951 - $1.27 Per Sq Ft x 16 Sq Ft = $20.32 in vinyl RTape ApliTape 4075 - $0.12 per Sq Ft x 16 = $1.92 in transfer tape Total material cost - $22.24 Just about done! Now you don’t want to just move material through your shop, and break even. You have to account for waste, so you mark up the material. I normally markup higher on small jobs and less on larger jobs. This one I'll do 3x material cost $22.24 x 3 = $66.72 Material cost to customer Add your time and materials $66.72 + $253.78 = $320.50 You now have an accurate price that takes into account all of your expenses, the time it took to make it, and the time it took to install it. When I first started I would look at this and say to myself "How can I justify over $300 when I know that it only cost me $20 in materials?" That was the un-educated, younger version of myself. There's more than just material in the price of the sign. Find your shop rate and don't be afraid to price accordingly. Your time is valuable. If a customer can't appreciate that, move on to the next customer. DON'T SELL YOURSELF SHORT! Dont forget to get the spreadsheet below Shop Rate Calculator.zip
  19. 11 points
    Got this from a friend in an e-mail today. Had to pass it on. Hope I attached it right.
  20. 11 points
    Robin Williams committed suicide today. The news will cover it extensively. People who didn't know him will cry out that it's a major loss to them. On average, 23 Veterans will also commit suicide today, because the ravages ruined their mind. The news will NOT cover this. Nobody but the families will notice. Robin Williams starred in a movie about Vietnam. Many Veterans who will kill themselves served there. As you were.
  21. 11 points
    You gotta sharpen your skills or remove that "custom" from your name.... vector graphics 101. Get out the Bezier Pen and learn to use it folks. mnnmghm_02.svg mnnmghm_02.eps
  22. 11 points
    Part of my business is making custom pin-back buttons using equipment from Badge-A-Minit. Each month they have a Hot Button contest and people submit their button designs for a chance to win prizes. One of my designs was selected as the Hot Button of the Month for May 2014. This is the 2nd time I've won the big prize, and I once won a runner-up prize. The first two times I won, I held on to my gift certificate for when I "really needed it" and ended up letting them both expire, so this time I had it spent within an hour of receiving it, wasn't going to waste it again! The trick to winning, I've found, is to include a good story about how the buttons are an inexpensive marketing tool and easy to sell to people - each time I've won, the design itself wasn't anything special but had a good story with it - some of the more elaborate designs that didn't have a good story didn't even get recognized...
  23. 11 points
    A quick install today. 6x6 post covered with 040 aluminium with post caps and alumalite sign
  24. 11 points
    Looking back over the past 8+ years I have been doing this I realize what great people this venture has let me meet - people from all over the world sharing ideas, helping each other (cause everyone has different strengths) like they was old friends. you come to know who you can trust and where to ask that special question - We help each other from time to time and encourage each other thru the hard and trying times. sometimes we lose some and some find their way back after a while. who could ask for a better group of people to share our lives with. I have had the privilege of meeting several in person from Michigan, Ohio, Florida, TN, IN,HA - and had the privilege of extended conversations via PM. IM, Phone with many others. Shared gifts thru a secret santa program with Austrailia (x2), Canada, GA, TN, etc - What a cool ride this is.
  25. 11 points