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Need Help Graphtech FC8000 not cutting accurately

Discussion in 'Graphtec' started by RichardG, Dec 16, 2019.

  1. RichardG

    RichardG New Member

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    Dec 13, 2019
    Texas
    Hello everyone! I'm new to this site so hope I got this posted in the right place.

    I don't have a lot of experience with maintenance or setup on any plotters. I've tried searching for a post with someone having the same problem but wasn't able to find anything, so hopefully someone can help me out. We have a Graphtech FC8000 and have these small decals about 1.125'" in diameter to cut, but the cuts are coming out off center. I've tried messing with the offset settings but it doesn't seem to make any visible difference. So I'm wondering if I am loading the vinyl incorrectly or maybe there is a setting that is set wrong on the plotter. As I said I am inexperienced on these machines and have no clue how to solve this issue. I would appreciate any advice. Running plotter out of Flexi

    TLDR: Graphtech cutting off center circles on print and cut vinyl, please help.

    Edit: There has to be a thin line of black going all around the white stickers.
     

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Dec 17, 2019
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  2. Whitsonator

    Whitsonator New Member

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    Jun 9, 2015
    LaGrange, GA
    Hi Richard,
    We have the same setup as you so I'm somewhat familiar with these issues. There are several things that can cause this problem. The most important thing is making sure the print media is square with the printer that is printing the images and.... the registration marks for the plotter. Secondly you have to line the printed material up just about perfect in the plotter to achieve success. Since the FC8000 is friction fed I generally don't do long runs of small contour cut images. The plotter will get off eventually so I keep them short runs, no longer than 3-4 feet. You might also check to make sure the levers on the back of the pinch wheels are in the position to have the most down pressure on the media too. I have installed (2) more additional pinch wheels on my plotter to help assist in keeping the media straight. Also in predicting this situation to happen we often oversize the outside color of the printed image and have the contour cut be inside the printed color of the image (the finished size required) to ensure if it gets off a little it is not noticeable.

    Whitson
     
    • Like Like x 1
  3. rvolkers

    rvolkers Member

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    Feb 12, 2019
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    try this
    1. do art work in illustrator and have a layer called Cutcontour for you gutting
    2. set crop makers in cm 3 or 4
    3. output art only
    4. NOW - open up illustrator and open cut layer only
    5. open up cm 4 or 3 and setup the condition you want to use
    6. move cut tool so it is centered on crop mark and hit send
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  4. BIG EASY DOES IT

    BIG EASY DOES IT Very Active Member

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    Mar 14, 2011
    CA
    Can you give us a walkthrough of your setup process for print/cut. With illustrator and flexi and other programs there are different ways you can setup the print/cut file. There might be something in the process you are doing that is throwing it off. Normally when you see cuts like this that are consistently off there was a problem with the file creation. If you have cuts that seem to start ok and then go off as they get to one side this usually denotes an issue reading the crop marks or an issue with the way your loading the material. Since your cuts all look identical I would lean towards an issue with the file but it could even be a GPGL HPGL language issue too. If you give us a run down of how you get from art to print/cut file that would help.
     
  5. RichardG

    RichardG New Member

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    Dec 13, 2019
    Texas
    Thank you for replying. I was considering that may be the case. I've reprinted and cut these decals 4 times and am getting the same issue each time with no difference in the cuts. I should have mentioned before that the stickers that are mostly white are supposed to have a thin black line going around them. If that wasn't apparent.
    First, our designer creates the artwork in AI w/o any contour cuts added, then I open that file in Flexi. From there I add the contour cut and bleed then send to print. After laminated, I load it into the graphtech and send it to cut. Also on a side note the circles also don't come out perfectly round. They're very close but slightly off. The curves aren't very smooth. Anyway I hope this is helpful, please let me know if there is any more info needed.
     
  6. RichardG

    RichardG New Member

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    Dec 13, 2019
    Texas
    Thank you for replying. The thing is that, I have printed these multiple times and gotten the same results and all of the cuts are consistently off. It seems like no matter how I load it the cuts are off.
     
  7. rvolkers

    rvolkers Member

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    Feb 12, 2019
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    i want to add one more very important item to what i posted - we work only in illustrator and i forgot one thing so here is what we do for cutting after printing with or with out lamination!
    1 set up file in illustrator with a bit of bleed around each piece of art
    2 create a pure green color and make it a spot color and name it cut contour
    3 have all art on one layer
    4 have all your cuts on on a separate layer called Cutcontour - you will use the green you made named Cutcontour the cut stroke should be .001 and this shoul be exacct to where you want cuts to be inside of your bleed
    5 in cutmaster create crop marks - (for longer runs use the the reg marks that allow you to run marks up the sides as well as corners usually 10 inches apart for sides works well)
    6 save file to print as eps - with just the art and reg marks (DO NOT INCLUDE CUTS)
    7 after you sheet has printed and laminated (if doing) - position sheet in cutter (making sure) it is absolutely straight
    8 open up your illustrator file turn off art layer and turn on cut layer (ONLY)
    9 select the the cut layer with crops and send to cutmaster
    10 pick a condition and do a test cut
    11 position blade holder in center of bottom right crop and finalize origin
    12 send - the blade holder should read all crops corners and sides and the start to cut

    all should be good
     
  8. RichardG

    RichardG New Member

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    Dec 13, 2019
    Texas
     
  9. stxrmxn

    stxrmxn Member

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    Jan 24, 2014
    Brisbane
    Have you tried to just print / laminate / cut 1 single row?
    We print up to 2 metres (6 & a half feet) laminate with a thick laminate so the material is 22 mil, we run 2 perf cut passes and its perfect every time on the 2nd pass, may be a little bit off on the accuacy of where it actually starts to cut (1 mm maybe) so we have a 3pt offset bleed on all our work.
    If you have a print / cut printer try cutting out on that and see if there is any difference.
    Circles are the worst for this kind of issue, if we have to do them i try to keep a larger border than normal.
    File attached shows simulated cutting problem, one has a larger border than the other but the issue is less noticeable because the offset of the cut path was larger.
    It s not an ideal solution but could get you out of trouble until you figure out the issue.
     

    Attached Files:

  10. RichardG

    RichardG New Member

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    Dec 13, 2019
    Texas

    Thank you for replying. I'll try to try this out. We only have AI on our deisgners desktop and run everything else on a seperate computer. So we'll have to try to see if we can make it work somehow with this setup.
     
  11. RichardG

    RichardG New Member

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    Dec 13, 2019
    Texas
    I add bleed as well and usually that is what I do to solve the issue, but unless I'm missing something no matter how I set this up without changing the artwork it will be obvious that it isn't right unfortunately.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  12. BIG EASY DOES IT

    BIG EASY DOES IT Very Active Member

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    CA
    1. Create the print and cut file from illustrator with cutting master.
    2. Export the print file to flexi with the registration marks on it already.
    3. Only use flexi to print the file.
    4. Connect the graphtec to the illustrator computer and cut the print from cutting master.

    Your life will be much easier if you take this path. Keep print and cut all in flexi and you are going to repeatedly run into issues like this. I can't say exactly what it is but there are issues with flexi and graphtec talking together. Seems for the most part to only be on print/cut stuff. Seems also to have issues when you cancel jobs and information gets stuck in the buffer/cache. Weekly issues using flexi. We run into this issue maybe once a year now. All it takes to get back is a simple off/on when using illustrator. With flexi it requires a reset to factory defaults everytime I have had this issue.

    Interested to see what you pin point as the problem.
     
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