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Converting a file to something an embroidery place can use?

Discussion in 'General Software' started by Browner, Sep 5, 2019.

  1. Browner

    Browner Member

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    Anyone know how - or have the ability to convert a vector file into something an embroidery place could use? A customer of mine's is looking for a DST file. Not sure if that's generic enough. I've got the file in illustrator, and can convert it into just about anything - except for any form of embroidery file. I've checked out Wilcom's TrueSizer, and it will only use, what I guess are, real embroidery files.

    If there's no easy/cheap solution, would someone on here be willing to convert it for me? Or is this something that's machine specific - with final results being dependant on something only the embroidery person themselves knows (machine type, thread type, materials, etc....).

    TIA
     
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  2. WildWestDesigns

    WildWestDesigns Major Contributor

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    DSTs are the more universal file format for embroidery machines. Most will accept them from your mid range home machines to your high end commercial machines.

    Wilcom's TruSizer is more for already done files. Either Wilcom's native EMB format or your raw stitch files. A caveat here, there is always something lost in conversion from either EMB to raw file or from raw file to raw file (DST to say a PES file, or vice versa). Also, even if you have the native EMB file format and yes it deals with embroidery objects (akin to vector objects), there are still limits to how big or how small you can go (and no just going from a satin to a fill or fill to satin or satin to run etc doesn't do it, sometimes it requires digitizing again for best results).

    Cheap and/or easy typically means bad file. Either from a production stand point for quality output and/or efficiency of machine time. And if y'all think power trace/live trace has it's issues, imagine it ten fold in the embroidery world. Why I don't consider it auto digitizing but auto conversion. Digitizing is a key component of the embroidery process and allocated over the entire run (unless doing a short hot run) even a slightly more expensive file is cheaper in the long run, especially comparing machine run times. I've seen really cheap files take 50 minutes (and on a single head that adds up), while a slightly more expensive file takes 25-30 minutes for the same exact file.

    What you'll need to know to pass on to the digitizer is size that you are wanting (this will very much affect how well the logo will translate, especially if it's "as is" only), what substrates and fabric type(s) that it's going to be going on. While it is possible for some designs to translate really well across multiple substrates, that isn't always going to be the case, even though most customer of mine like to try that first. But if you think that they are going to want it on shirts and hats (just for example) let the digitizer know that upfront. Hats especially require a very specific sequencing to work correctly in most situations.

    As to what files most embroidery shops can handle, if they are using Wilcom (E4 especially), they can handle anything that DRAW x8 can handle. If they are really doing the digitizing (as in using manual/semi-manual digitizing tools, not auto converting), just about anything will work. I've digitized from sketches (usually what I do when coming up with stock designs to sell). The biggest thing is making sure it is high resolution. If doing vectors, make sure text is converted to curves/outlines. While gradients may be possible (depends on the individual situation), send the source file as a raster file, not all digitizing programs handle gradients well in vector form. Some can rasterize EPS (v8 tends to be the most accepted) files on the fly, but not all.
     
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  3. Browner

    Browner Member

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    Good info (leading to lots of questions) to go back to my customer with. Thank you!
     
  4. WildWestDesigns

    WildWestDesigns Major Contributor

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    If there are any other questions, feel free to email (in siggy) me and I'll do my best to help. Digitizing is a big part of what I do, so I always like talking about it.
     
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  5. unclebun

    unclebun Very Active Member

    I get phone calls at least once or twice a week and emails pretty much every day from people wanting my digitizing business. It can't be that hard to find someone to do it.

    On the other hand, the place that's doing the embroidery should be able to do the digitizing or has a place that does it for them. It does cost money. Usually $75-$250, depending on size and number of stitches. It sounds like your customer is trying to avoid paying a digitizing fee by asking you for the file. But sign companies don't use embroidery files, and so you would have to pay (and charge them) to get one made as well.
     
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  6. WildWestDesigns

    WildWestDesigns Major Contributor

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    Price by stitch count hasn't been the mainstream pricing schema for quite a long time (not here stateside anyway for digitizing only, foreign markets are something else). Size and complexity is usually what is done now or the closest to a pure stitch count basis would be a flat rate up to x amount of stitches then it's y per 1k after that. Not many still go by stitch count solely. The ones that do digitizing and require embroidery done with them may still do that schema.

    Typically your normal LC files (on average around 7k or so) tend not to go over that flat rate, there are exceptions to that, like with anything out there. I'm not a flat rate person because there are a alot of variance to that, especially comparing regular corporate work to realistic embroidery.

    While I'm not the cheapest (certainly with how foreign markets do things) the range that you listed would be more in my realistic animals digitizing or full back (or front, not all are full back, but most are). Corporate LC work doesn't go that high unless it's really complex or they are wanting a lot of mixed decoration methods (embroidery with sequin embroidery and/or applique etc).
     
  7. mkmieciak

    mkmieciak Lost Soul

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    https://www.ignitiondrawing.com
     
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