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Getting into Vinyl cutting

Discussion in 'Newbie Forum' started by p8ntballer1911, Feb 22, 2007.

  1. p8ntballer1911

    p8ntballer1911 New Member

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    Me and my brother are going to get into making vinyl cut stickers. I have some questions,

    1. What is the difference between a cutter, plotter, and a printer?

    2. I'm looking to get a vinyl cutter, I have around 300-500 to spend. What would be a good machine to buy for cutting stickers. New or used, eBay works to.

    3. Are sign cutters the same that cutters that cut vinyl stickers?


    Thanks,
    Brandon
     
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2007
    Tags:
  2. Replicator

    Replicator Major Contributor

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    Brandon you're gonna need several thousand $ to buy a good plotter that cuts vinyl . . .
    Although you may be able to buy a chinese plotter on ebay for next to nothing,
    you may want to study the threads more and do searches for past posts about these types
    of ebay machines . . .

    Printer : Prints on various substrates.
    Plotter/Cutter : Cuts vinyl.

    Good Luck !
     
  3. Flame

    Flame Major Contributor

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    A cutter and a plotter is the same thing. It cuts out shapes in solid colored vinyl that you buy on a roll.

    A printer lays down the color, but doesn't do any cutting. Just like a desktop printer... only way bigger.

    A printer will put you back atleast 13K, while you could probably find a used plotter for around $700-$800. Stay away from the chinese junk, it will just cause you headaches and end up costing you more than you can imagine.

    Roland, Summa and Graphtec are all good names in the plotter industry.



    good luck.
     
  4. p8ntballer1911

    p8ntballer1911 New Member

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    Feb 22, 2007
    Any suggestion on a good machine?
     
  5. imaSIGNr

    imaSIGNr Very Active Member

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    You need more than a cutter/plotter. You need computer software. You'll need various rolls of vinyl, and various tables,paraphernalia of the trade, etc.

    And although I don't have a printer, don't they also cut if you want them to ? Thus-"cut and print" You need to have at least a contour cut, right ?

    You could easily spend what you've got on a few rolls of intermediate vinyl alone.
     
  6. Taurusndixie

    Taurusndixie Member

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    Take your 3 or 4 hundred and find a good used Roland PNC 1000 or 1000a.
    Buying one from someone you do not know and not getting ripped off might be a trick.

    I have run a Roland PNC 1000a for about 14 years. Made 200,000.00 with it and never a problem. Had a bad cable recently. It is simple, almost no programming. No big learning curve. It does what a vinyl cutter should do and nothing else. Cuts 20 inches wide and 15 wide, non peferated material. For the same price you probably could find the next printer up a PNC 1100. This is also very simple machine and cuts 24 inch wide.

    Good luck
     
  7. p8ntballer1911

    p8ntballer1911 New Member

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    Trying to look for one... but haven't have any luck. What is a good suppler of new and used cutters?
     
  8. Jackpine

    Jackpine Major Contributor

    Check your PM's.
     
  9. gvgraphics

    gvgraphics Very Active Member

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    p8nt, Do listen to what everyone has told you thus far. The cheap cutters are just that cheap. Now there are a few members here who have the cheaper machines and have been luck with no problems but that is a chance you take.

    My suggestion to you and please take this as serious as you can. If you have 3-400 to spend now keep saving. I say this because there is allot to learn, outlines, kerning, down force, cast, calendered, offset and so on. Take the time to fully research the business and while doing this you can save some more money to get a "decent" setup and already be two steps ahead with some knowledge of what you will be getting in to. And don't forget you need more that just a cutter, you will need material ($35-$90 per roll), mask around $20 bucks, squeegee's, and some other small tools to apply vinyl. Hope this helps with your decision.

    P.S. Do me a favor, call them decals not "stickers". That just sounds cheap!

    Sean
     
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2007
  10. Jackpine

    Jackpine Major Contributor

    P.S. Do me a favor, call them decals not "stickers". That just sounds cheap!

    I absolutely agree with Sean...they are decals.....not "stickers".
     
  11. p8ntballer1911

    p8ntballer1911 New Member

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    How much money do you think i will need to get a good cutter? Not the best but something that will work good to make decals :Cool 2: .
     
  12. gvgraphics

    gvgraphics Very Active Member

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    If it is a "Hobby" you want than you probably around 5-600 for a decent used cutter. You will also need a few hundred more to get the basics like vinyl, mask and some tools.
     
  13. Flame

    Flame Major Contributor

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    The Rolands are one of the few that "print and cut". And it's a joke IMHO. Most printers do just that.... print. A few will contour cut. For most folks, that means using a seperate plotter (like me).

    If you can, look for a PC1100 like someone else mentioned, or an old Graphtec FC series plotter is a good option. I have one pushing 10 years old and while it's not in full use anymore, the thing is awesome! Never breaks down!
     
  14. Mike Paul

    Mike Paul Major Contributor

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    Maybe you guys should consider researching this new business/trade adventure before jumping in head first
    not knowing a damn thing about it? :rolleyes:
    .
     
  15. Dave Drane

    Dave Drane Very Active Member

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    And learn design first!!
     
  16. decals

    decals Member

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    You can probably pick up a small Roland Sticka for that price range.. a used SX or STX.
     
  17. Inkfish Graphics

    Inkfish Graphics Active Member

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    That's either because (a) you don't have a clue what you are doing (b) have an old used printer/cutter or (c) your ignorant.

    I have been using Roland Print/Cut for a long time without a hitch and it makes a good living for me. Just a piece of friendly trade advice flame...please don't make generalized statements about things you don't completely understand because it makes you look the latter. I;m sure you don't want such. :wink:
     
  18. Flame

    Flame Major Contributor

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    Excuse me? I wasn't dissing on anyone, just Rolands poor cutter system. Even the Roland dealers I've talked to say I won't need the cut system that much, and the best idea would to be just buy a seperate cutter. Main reasons being:

    1. The cutter is slower than most name brand plotters, and the downforce is considerably weaker (300 as opposed to my Graphtecs 600).

    2. If you laminate prints (as I do 95% of the time), you have to feed the material back into the printer again anyways. Which means more downtime of your printer NOT printing.

    3. It costs more. The 30" VersaCamm costs almost as much as my 48" Mutoh and 42" Graphtec (put together). And for the price, you'll actually probably have to work slower.



    Like I said though, that's just my opinions. But I feel the print/ cut option wasn't the greatest idea and I KNOW I'm not the only person that feels that way.

    anyhoo, sorry to be a :thread . back on topic...
     
  19. Pro Signs & Graphix

    Pro Signs & Graphix Very Active Member

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    It is "Custom Cut Vinyl".

    Flame - Please do not give Ink validation by responding...it is just not worth the time and trouble to type or read.
     
  20. OldPaint

    OldPaint Major Contributor

    DECALS=those things that came with modle airplanes, you soaked in water then applied to model.
    STICKERS=the stuff that GOODYEAR/MSD/STP/ etc hand out for FREE.
    VINYL GRAPHICS=all the decals and stickers you cut with a plotter and apply tranfer tape to!!!!!!!!!
     
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