Welcome To Signs101.com: Largest Forum for Signmaking Professionals

Signs101.com: Largest Forum for Signmaking Professionals is the LARGEST online community & discussion forum for professional sign-makers and graphic designers.


  1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Fc7000 160

Discussion in 'Graphtec' started by cwtjr81, Dec 16, 2006.

  1. cwtjr81

    cwtjr81 Member

    Dec 6, 2006
    Oskaloosa, IA
    I just purchased a Graphtec FC7000 160 with the auto reg. mark sensor. I keep having trouble with the arms system when trying to contour cut printed graphics. It reads the first mark moves to the second reads it then comes back to the point of origin and says "mark scan error". I have tried dimming the lights, darkining the reg. mark, and moving the marks away from the print alittle ways and still hit and miss alot when it will work. I have wasted a lot of material already and getting really frustrated. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

    Charlie Thomas
  2. ahollow

    ahollow Active Member

    Dec 25, 2004
    Make sure you have the latest firmware. I had this problem big time with 1.52 (from the factory in May). I believe the latest is 1.80

    Also, what software are you using?
  3. bob

    bob Major Contributor

    Nov 4, 2005
    The completely automated use of the ARMS on the Graphtec is problematic for prints much longer that 18"-24". It misses far more often than it works and it's a software thing more than hardware. The software moves the plotter form, say, mark 1 to where it thinks mark 2 ought to be and tells the plotter to find it. If where the software thinks the mark is and where it actually is is beyond the tolerances of the search area, it misses. I have no idea what software you're using but in Flexi once it misses, there's no second chance to try again unless you wisely specified 'Hold' in the job disposition and then start the job again. If you didn't set the disposition to 'Hold"' most likely you're SOL for that print. Even if you start the thing again, nothing has changed, it's just as likely to miss in subsequent attempts as well. You can nudge the media this way or that and try again and sometimes that works, but generally you lose.

    If Flexi were civilized in this area it would give you the opportunity to read the marks using the plotter's facility for doing this and, failing this, let you manually set the marks using the light point. But it doesn't.

    On anything larger than about 18" I usually position my own marks at the four corners of a known rectangle that contains the image and use the automatic sensing feature of the plotter. This seldom if ever fails but the downside is that if you have multiple images you have to set them up and send them which can lead to enormous job files and less than optimum cutting order. There are also some considerations with margins. You can't have any. If you do the cut will be off by the size of the margin. Moreover, it's incredibly slow. The plotter creeps from one mark to the next. Using this method the registration marks are between you and the plotter. Flexi is unaware of their existence.

    You can also print with 4 point manual marks and use the built in light point to manually locate the corners. This is a reasonable alternative if you're careful, have reasonably good eyes and an understanding of parallax. Oddly, it's faster than using the plotter's built in mechanism which runs at glacial speeds. It has the charm of never failing. Ever. The downside it that it's only as accurate as you are.
  4. Neil

    Neil Member

    Aug 25, 2005
    Adelaide, South Australia
    The ARMS works well for me, I regularly contour cut lengths of 4' on the FC7000-75 through Signlab Print & Cut.

    Through trial and error I've found that you need to ensure a few things are done to prevent the dreaded mark scan error:

    Allow enough margin around the graphics for the reg marks so the scanner doesn't hit the printed areas.

    Allow at least 1/2 inch space up from the cutter head for the bottom reg mark, and 3/4 inch down for the top one.

    Load the vinyl parallel with the rollers. I have vinyl strips running down the platen in line with the grit rollers so I can butt up the graphics to them so I know it's going to feed straight.

    Move the cutter head and set the origin 1/2" before and under the first reg mark. If you don't set it that close before you start in the first place it will miss the second mark.

    The last one is probably the most common mistake that results in mark scan errors.

    So everything is set up square, with enough margins inside the rollers, and the origin on the cutter is set (entered) just before the first mark. Then when you're prompted by your software, you only have to move the cutter head a little bit to place it within the first reg mark.

    Also, make sure there's nothing that can be accidently read along the path of the scanner. Marks, dust or even the edge of laminate will get detected.

    Good luck!
  5. cwtjr81

    cwtjr81 Member

    Dec 6, 2006
    Oskaloosa, IA
    Thanks for the help guys this is really driving me crazy. I use flexi 8 and I have set it to hold it in que after output. I will try your suggestions today and see how it goes.

    Thanks again
  6. Trish

    Trish New Member

    Apr 1, 2007
    graphtec FC-7000 ARMS scanner failure

    I'm also having trouble with the ARMS reading the printed registration marks. It seems to be a hyper-sensitivity scanner issue. After the scanner reads the first mark, as it travels to the second mark, it will stop as if it's found the mark, get confused, and "the dreaded scan message" appears. It seems to occur more often with laminated jobs. The high gloss seems to confuse the scanner. These days we're scuffing the marks (and the pathway between the marks) with scotchbrite to dull the gloss - this actually works. But obviously we'd like the machine to work properly. Is there any way to adjust the scanner sensitivity?? Didn't see anything about it in the manual.
  7. RJ California

    RJ California Active Member

    Jul 19, 2005
    I have a Graphtec 7000 paired up with a HP 9000 and I've had no problems at all, that includes laminated and unlaminated. The cuts are always right on the money and I don't think I've had a "mark scan error" in 6 months (and I cut some pretty large graphics).

    I think sometimes the error might be with the printer printing a slightly different size than the file specifies. On some printers if the file size is 96" in length and you print it to full size you will notice that the actual printed size is only 95" (+/-). I think this is an issue with some printers more than others.
  8. astroman

    astroman New Member

    Nov 1, 2006
    i had the same problem with my CE5000 until i tried this

    a bit off and you get the Error mark ..
  9. Ken

    Ken Major Contributor

    Feb 7, 2005
    Oh, I always get a good grunt from bob's remarks....that applies to my versacamm so much...I'm off topic..but can relate..

Share This Page