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Blade holder trick from SignCraft

Discussion in 'Tips & Tricks' started by equippaint, Apr 26, 2019.

  1. equippaint

    equippaint Very Active Member

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  2. TimToad

    TimToad Very Active Member

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    We did a trailer yesterday with printed and laminated reflective and some fairly small letters. When I switched the 45 degree to 60 degree blade to cut it all, I used the trick and it really improved the cutting accuracy.

    Thanks for sharing.
     
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  3. ddarlak

    ddarlak Trump Hater

    31 years of using various cutters and having different issues along the way I am dumbfounded that I didn't think of this
     
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  4. TimToad

    TimToad Very Active Member

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    I've always tried to blow out any debris or gunk that builds up, but it turns out there are tiny bearings inside the blade holders that affect how freeley the blade will rotate.
     
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  5. equippaint

    equippaint Very Active Member

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    IMO, that's why you shouldn't use WD40, its like glue for dirt. I'm not sure why they suggested it.
     
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  6. TimToad

    TimToad Very Active Member

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    I hear ya. This is what we use for most lubricating needs except the ones better not shared on such hostile places as Signs101. ;)
     

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  7. Texas_Signmaker

    Texas_Signmaker Very Active Signmaker

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    I had added a .2" overcut in production manager and everything weeds like butter.
     
  8. rjssigns

    rjssigns Major Contributor

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  9. ikarasu

    ikarasu Very Active Member

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    huh? I thought this was general knowledge!

    When you buy a blade holder from Graphtec... they include a vial of grease with it. You're supposed to put a drop in every once in awhile. We had 6 blade holders... the guy before me never did any kind of maintenance on them.... after cleaning and greasing them up, I fixed 2... the other 4 didn't cut good, and went into the garbage. Now it's part of our monthly maintenance.

    The manual actually says if you dont have any of the grease they provide, any "Silicone grease" will do.

    http://www.graphteccorp.com/support/appnotes/TNC_009_Making_Cutter_Last.pdf

    You can buy a new blade holder for $10 on E-bay. they're cheap chinese ones... but I tend to use it 99% of the time when cutting normal vinyl as it does a way better job than our 5 year old blade holders.


    A few other maintenance tips most people don't know about or do -

    The cutting strips - On summa/graphtec theyre replaceable. They cost between $20-30... It's easy to change, and if you've never changed it... you'll notice a huge difference in cutting.

    The grit rollers - Paper and glue tends to get stuck on them. It gives it uneven pressure and it'll tend to skew the media as it feeds. You take an old garbage bic pen, remove the pen from it.. move the media forward/backward when it's empty, and press the plastic pen against the grit rollers. It'll clean all the glue and paper away from the wheels

    Wheel pressure - If your machine is skewing... its likely your pinch rollers need some maintenance. If one is looser than the other it'll skew - the left roller is generally always more loose than the furthest since it gets used 100% of the time. All you need to do to adjust the pressure is screw/unscrew the screw in the back - I bought a luggage scale from Amazon for $10. You put some vinyl under the wheel... attach it to the scale, and check how much pressure you need to pull the vinyl from the wheel. rinse and repeat on every wheel while adjusting the pressure - our 6 year old machine kept skewing, we noticed one wheel had almost zero pressure... tons of researching and reading maintenance manuals, and it looks like graphtec has a special tool to do this. It just looked like a luggage scale with a metal strip and a place for the wheel to sit into... i'm sure the amazon method isn't as accurate, but it worked for us!

    Half the buttons on our graphtec seem to be broken and loose. The Fast button is the biggest culprit.. It tends to go underneath and gets stuck, and then the machine wont do anything until you notice and wiggle it back out. I believe it's 4 screws to open it up... We threw a bit of VHB tape underneath the buttons that were broken (It's very thin plastic...I'm talking a MM of plastic for each button, really stupid design), and it held the buttons up so they were firm and it was like a brand new machine. It lasted for about a year and a half, then we just repeated the process.
     
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  10. jimbug72

    jimbug72 Member

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    We have been tearing our hair out for the last month or so trying to figure out why our cuts weren't closing. Tried tinkering with offsets, changing blades, cutting strips... Everything we did seemed to, at best, temporarily help a little. Was about to plunk down $100 for a new blade holder to see if that helped, when I read this thread. A few quirts of silicone lube and it's back to cutting like a dream!

    Thanks for sharing Equippaint!!!
     
  11. fresh

    fresh Very Active Member

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    Olive Oil also works :) Years ago we had this issue, and I thought we needed a new plotter. Someone suggested a drop of lubricant, which I didn't have, but we did have some olive oil in the kitchen, and it worked great.
     
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