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Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by mrsfarmer, Jan 19, 2006.

  1. mrsfarmer

    mrsfarmer New Member

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    Jan 19, 2006
    I have an embroidery business & heatpress doing transfers and am starting to venture into apparel vinyl. I can't decide on what cutter to buy or what I really need to start. I don't want to spend alot of money,but want the best for least, like everyone!:wink:
    I also bought a laser printer to print my own transfers but not happy with that since you mostly have to use light colored apparel. Most of my apparel I decorate is colors, mostly darks. So vinyl is a great solution to it I thought anyway.
    I also have another full time job, so all of this is done parttime.
    Who knows maybe I'd make signs also, but that isn't in the plan at this time.
    Hope to learn alot on this forum!
     
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  2. WVB

    WVB Very Active Member

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    Feb 25, 2005
    If you are going to use this for business (not hobby) then stay with name brands vinyl plotters such as Roland, Graphtec, Summa and Ioline. SSK has a designtech that is OEMed by Graphtec for SSK with small alterations made to it if you like to save some money. If you are going to get into signs then now is the time to decide. Don't just buy a 15" for now to get buy, you WILL sell it quickly at a loss to only buy a bigger plotter. At least stick with a 24" model which will be big enough for things such as magnetic signs, coros, banners etc.
     
  3. mrsfarmer

    mrsfarmer New Member

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    Jan 19, 2006
    It definately will be used for business and I am thinking for sure the 24. Someone on my embroidery list is selling a 24" PNC950 for $1000 along with several rolls of vinyl. I didn't know if this is a good deal or should just go new and get good support. I also don't have an extra parallell port on my computer. The one is used for my embroidery softwear. So there is a difference of a vinyl cutter used for apparel and one that will be used for signage? I thought is would be the vinyl type. I'm thinking of calling SSK or SignWarehouse to find out information.
     
  4. WVB

    WVB Very Active Member

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    Feb 25, 2005
    Stay AWAY from Signwarehouse. Most plotters work off of parallel, serial and usb ports. But keep in mind there are a lot of adapters out there such as parallel to usb or serial to usb etc.

    No, there is no difference between plotters for signage or apparel. Just sizing from as small as 8" to say a 60". The difference would be the blade and downforce you will use to cut vinyl versus cutting thermoflex (apparel vinyl).
     
  5. TC49010

    TC49010 Active Member

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    Jan 19, 2005
    I have the dongle hooked up to my parallel port as well for my embroidery machines, I am able to put the dongle on the bottom and put the cutter parallel printer cabel on top of it and things run fine. I also picked up a switch box which allows me to run 2 cutters and 2 printers and my embroidery machies all from the same computer.
    I dont know about the PNC950 but I have the sx-15 and Cx-24.
    If you should pick up the sx-15 to just start off to do small stuff like shirt designs in thermoflex, players names, numbers, decals, etc. Pick up a used one on ebay for 500.00 range. If you find you need to go bigger, re-sell it on ebay and you will recover what you paid. I go through 6 rolls of thermoflex a week and my design is nothing more than 12inches wide by 6-8 inches and I could run every one of them on a sx-15.
    sx-15 is 500 range, cx-24 is 1,000.00 range. Both machines can be re-sold and recover intial cost.
    Roland support is Great!
    I got into the vinyl to add to my embroidery as well for shirts only, no idea of doing anything more.
    If theres anything I can help with feel free to ask!
    :Welcome: to :signs101:

    Trixie
     
  6. SteadyBenny

    SteadyBenny Verboten

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    Mar 6, 2005
    PNC-950 is over 10 years old. May have quite a bit of use on it, in which case $1,000 doesn't seem like much of a deal. If it came with software of the same era, maybe Casmate or Inspire, you're looking at dead end software (no upgrades) that can't run on anything newer than Windows 98. Still not what I'd call a sweet deal.
    I'd go for the stripped down Graphtec from SSKY for just a little more.
     
  7. ENTDesign

    ENTDesign Very Active Member

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    May 12, 2005
    Welcome to Signs101
     
  8. mrsfarmer

    mrsfarmer New Member

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    Jan 19, 2006
    So what is the learning curve on a cutter? I do have Corel 9 but haven't had much time in using it. I just got into the heat press this fall, so I had alot of new business with that, then I had someone cut my vinyl for me. Now would be a good time to get one while there is a lull in business.
     
  9. WVB

    WVB Very Active Member

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    Feb 25, 2005
    Plotters are pretty much straight forward in operation. The learning curve would be what degree blade to use with what film, and the downforce needed to cut vinyl but not paper backing. Some plotters use media rolls (which I like myself) to hold the vinyl in place and to help it track straight for long cuts, while some do not use them. So if they do not use them I would imagine there would be a learning curve in aligning the vinyl correctly to track properly through the plotter.
    Since you already have Corel you can cut directly from it with a Graphtec/Roland plotter.
     
  10. TC49010

    TC49010 Active Member

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    Jan 19, 2005
    I can only speak for the sx-15 and cx-24 as for learning curves.
    Sx-15 easy.. turn on power, load material from front of machine, cut. I use the same blade for my vinyl that I do for thermoflex. The cx-24 has a minor learning curve because it has a dial adjustment for you to pick, roll, edge, peice force etc. But honestly... you'll have more of a learning curve with corel than you will with setting up the cutter.
    Your lucky.. theres people here to help guide you! I had no one and was 100% lost and I stumbled on to this group and I am so glad I did!
    Trixie
     
  11. signguy95

    signguy95 Active Member

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    Dec 5, 2004
    Jsi Signs, www.jsisigns.com , carries a similar line to ssk OEMed version w/ software for a little over $1200 last time I checked!
     
  12. BeeKee

    BeeKee New Member

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    Jan 21, 2006
    what cutter to buy

    This is my first message on any type of group like this, so please be kind. I have an embroidery business and am looking to do vinyl lettering as well. I think i have the heat press narrowed down to the hix 15 but am still lost on the vinyl cutter and software. any suggestions would be more than appreciated. thanks
     
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2006
  13. TC49010

    TC49010 Active Member

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    Jan 19, 2005
    :Welcome: to :signs101:

    I also do embroidery and added the cutter/vinyl to my business to do shirts. I have a hix 15X15 clam heat press, Roland SX-15, Roland Cx-24 Vinyl Cutters, both run off dr.stka (free software) and/or Corel Draw.

    You'll get a wide range of Cutters choices here and lots of information but alot will also depend on what your budget is to get started and what you plan to use the cutter for.

    Feel free to post any other questions!!
     

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