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Need to buy a new plotter

Discussion in 'Newbie Forum' started by BatSpinner, Apr 17, 2007.

  1. BatSpinner

    BatSpinner New Member

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    I read on here every once in awhile. I do own a Roland SX-8. I own a baseball bat company that produces around 3000-5000 bats per year. We use the Roland to produce the labels that go on the barrel.

    Needless to say as our company grows, we need to produce more of these labels and the Roland does not keep up with our growth.

    I am looking to buy a plotter that it's most important functions are:

    1) Ability to cut smaller letters (1/2" approx)
    2) Cut a whole lot faster than the SX-8

    I bought the SX-8 for about $500 3.5 years ago, and it has paid for itself over and over. It is just too slow and sometimes doesn't transmit the data well enough and misses letters and sometimes goes off like it has a mind of its own.

    I am not going to be making any signs, mind it would be nice to put some on my vehicle.

    Any suggestions on what would be a good machine for this simple need? I would like it to also have its own software, that I can design the labels in, so I don't need to convert etc.
     
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  2. Replicator

    Replicator Major Contributor

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  3. mladams7259

    mladams7259 Very Active Member

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    Welcome Aboard,

    If you want a plotter get another roland, or check into graphtec and summa. All are great machines. You might even check into a solvent or eco-sol printer to add some more flare to your designs.
     
  4. Pro Image

    Pro Image Major Contributor

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    Another Roland or Graphtec would be my suggestions...........CX series for the Roland and FC for the Graphtecs.............no need to go bigger than a 24 or 20 in. in size for making decals for your bats................
     
  5. Speeddm

    Speeddm Member

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    Weve gone threw 2 Rolands and they were ok . But nothing close in quality to our new Summa S75T.
     
  6. Replicator

    Replicator Major Contributor

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    The reason I suggested a Gerber is so that instead of cutting and weeding

    tiny vinyl for the bats, you could print and cut very small graphics

    full color by the thousands very quickly . . .
     
  7. MobileImpact

    MobileImpact Active Member

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    The Gerber Edge is a great idea for you, especially if you want to add some "pop" to your designs etc. If your just looking to cut vinyl, get a NAME brand plotter. Summa. Roland or my personal favorite Graphtec.
    All are workhorses and will serve your needs well.

    Good Luck,

    Kevin
     
  8. BatSpinner

    BatSpinner New Member

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    Thanks for all the responses. Like reading through the other threads for suggestions, budget is a concern as I am in the business of baseball bats, not labeling them. Some of the machines especially the Graphtec would be ideal, but for over $6000, I can't really justify it.

    I have budgeted approx $800 for this. I don't mind the weeding part of it. Basically all of the labels are the same, so I am quite proficient at doing it. I have fiddled around with different vinyl, so I found a brand that works good for this (MacTac).

    I have been looking at the EnduraCut/EnduraCut Plus. For both speed and cost. The Roland models in the same ballpark at price are slower.

    I understand that most of you made your living with these machines, however it is just a very small part of ours.

    If you could please comment of the EnduraCut (this is 24") and the Roland SV15
     
  9. WVB

    WVB Very Active Member

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    Stay with a name brand Summa/Roland/Graphtec/Ioline/ etc.. Why don't you just outsource your decals so all that you have to do is apply them..? The only plotters that will do such small letters will be the ones mentioned. Since you can't justify the cost my suggestion would be to outsource them...
     
  10. BatSpinner

    BatSpinner New Member

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    Apr 17, 2007
    I have looked into that, but many shops aren't willing do to it. Mainly because of each bat usually has a different name on it, size, model etc. Some day the use is heavy others it is light. For the cost it really isn't worth it, plus it is nice to have it in the office for rush orders.

    The SX-8 we use cuts the small stuff very well, I'm sure there are others out there that would do the same.

    Any thoughts on the two that I had mentioned?
     
  11. Darklight

    Darklight Member

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    I started with the Endura-Cut, and wouldnt really recommend it. It was my attempt to save some $$ starting out, but the headaches werent worth it. I traded up just a bit to the q-series at signwarehouse, and for a small operation like mine, its been MUCH better. Not an expert or anything, just sharing my recent experience! :Oops:
     
  12. Urban Image

    Urban Image Member

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    I've had great experiences with Summa and Graphtec. Neither will break down on you. I personally prefer Summa's D Series.
     
  13. Jackpine

    Jackpine Major Contributor

    "Some of the machines especially the Graphtec would be ideal, but for over $6000, I can't really justify it." BatSpinner

    Not so, Graphtec CE5000 Mk2 around $1,400.00. Best bargain in the cutting trade in my opinion. First rate for the money.
     
  14. Techman

    Techman Major Contributor

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    $800 bux will buy you a lot of decals for your bats. Plus will save you hour$ on researching a way to reinvent the wheel.
     
  15. Pro Signs & Graphix

    Pro Signs & Graphix Very Active Member

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    Ions ago I went to work with a box of new tools. really cheap stuff, but at least now I had them. Needless to say, they did NOT hold up. My boss turns to me and asks: "How long do you plan on doing this?" and my response was "forever". His last question was: "Then why don't you just buy the best and only once?".

    He was 1000% right!

    The point is that you do not need to buy the most expensive thing out there but I think your budget is realistically too low for a new machine that you will probably never have to replace again. After all, you have had the Stika for 3 1/2 years - three years longer than most, not to mention the fact that you admit you are no longer "trying" the machine out.

    IMO you should be looking to spend $1500 to $2000 and be done with it.
     
  16. TrustedImages

    TrustedImages Member

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    I really would not reccomend the Enduracut for what your doing. It has a stepper motor and that is NOT what you want for cuts as small as you are going to be making. I really wouldn't reccomend the Enduracut Plus either again simply because of the fine detail you are going to be doing. I would go with the Graphtec CE5000 or the QE-60 Plus if you are looking at purchasing from Signwarehouse.
     
  17. The Sign Dude

    The Sign Dude Active Member

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    HEY Jack,
    What is the width of the CE5000 MK2? I am looking at upgrading. I have a CE3000 -60 24" now but I need something that will cut about 36"
     
  18. Jackpine

    Jackpine Major Contributor

    The CE5000 Mk2 is the same as the 3000Mk2 except it has the ARMS of the 7000 series. You only need a 36" cutter if you are cutting or contour cutting 36" material. Most print/cut graphics are 24" or 30" material.If you want a bigger cutter you have to go to the 5000Mk2 48" or the 7000 series ( my choice ) to the 30", 42" or larger. The 7000 series is very, very good. My 24" has done 99 % of what I need in contour cutting prints. Yes I would like a 30 or 42" 7000 series, but I will use what I have.
     
    Last edited: May 1, 2007
  19. Craig Sjoquist

    Craig Sjoquist Major Contributor

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    wow sure do like this forum .. ya learn so much ..
    like if you wanna know best cutter or printer for the jobs or types of work being done....even when the question answer is questioned it still get's rehashed and the answer comes out the same
    batspinner .. is this real .. the income off the $500 machine payed for itself many times over N allowed you a life style you wish to continue
    what would a $2,000 + - machine do ..your lucky ya got the cash to invest in one special form of livelyhood N the knowhow to make it all happen to where your successful ..be good to yourself by the best you can afford N ...GIT-R-DUN
    freedom is not free
     
  20. Techman

    Techman Major Contributor

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    Summa,, go summa every day..
     
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