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variable data

Discussion in 'General Software' started by petepaz, Jan 25, 2013.

  1. petepaz

    petepaz Major Contributor

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    anyone use variable data software for bar codes, serial no's.
    we make a lot of nameplates and labels that require this and we either have to sub it out or do it manually (which is a PITA)
     
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  2. MikeD

    MikeD Active Member

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    once for some apartment complex parking decals using Gerber Omega, and another job for a soccer team and used Wasatch's VDP.
    No Barcodes or Serial #'s though.
    I know there is a barcode plug in for Illustrator, and you can also use eXcell and inDesign to make a "vdp" layout.
     
  3. Mike F

    Mike F Active Member

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    Don't have much experience with it, but whenever I see it discussed the two names I always see pop up are XMPie and FusionPro. Another option I've heard mentioned pretty often would be the Data Merge feature in Adobe InDesign.

    edit: Also just remembered VersaWorks has a VDP function as well, here's their official webinar as long as a user/tech-created tutorial, in that order:
    Roland Webinar on VDP
    Roland Variable Data Printing Demo
     
  4. James Burke

    James Burke Being a grandpa is more fun than working

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    We do a ton of data merging with SignLab's "badge" function. We engrave several thousand "donor" bricks a year, and our clients submit the inscription data to us in either a MS Excel file or a MS Word file (or a tab spaced text file).

    It saves us a ton of time and places the burden of proof for the spelling on the customer.

    We just got Gerber Omega 5 two weeks ago but I haven't figured out how to do it in that program yet.

    JB
     
  5. Graffy

    Graffy New Member

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    Can you import your list of numbers into Excel?

    Here is a basic step by step:

    1. If you do not have any bar code fonts on your computer, download one from Dafont.com or some other resource.

    2. Install the font on your computer.

    3. Populate Column A in Excel with your list of numbers.

    4. In column B, cell #1 - type in this formula ="*"&A1&"*" (this will append whatever number is in Cell A1 with an asterisk at the beginning and end of the number. Ex: If A1 is 987654 then B1 will now read *987654*)

    5. Duplicate this formula for all of Column B. (Click cell B1, then place your cursor over the bottom right corner of the cell, hold left mouse button and drag the length of Column B)

    6. Now that Column B is populated with the appended data from Column A, simply select the entire column and change the Font from the default of Calibri to whatever the name of the barcode font you installed.

    Attached is an example of the finished result.

    http://gwooop.com/images/signs101/barcode%20excel%20example.pdf

    This may not answer your question directly but hopefully will be of some use to others who want to generate bar codes.
     
  6. petepaz

    petepaz Major Contributor

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    thanks for the info
    i will check it all out.
    we have sign lab and have used the badge function which is good for ser. no.s but i haven't tried anything with barcodes. the other issue is sometimes a nameplate may have multiple areas that get variable data. this pops up with a lot of military/gov. work we do
     
  7. Graffy

    Graffy New Member

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    If you have Vectric Aspire or Vcarve Pro, here is an excellent tutorial:

    Plate Production
     
  8. James Burke

    James Burke Being a grandpa is more fun than working

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    I'm not using it for bar codes, but we do up to six lines of text on each 8 x 8 brick we do. The data for one brick inscription is all contained in a single row of an Excel file.

    The information in cell A1 goes on the first line, the info in cell A2 goes on the second line and so on (see attached photo).

    You can also set up a file the same way using the plain text editor. Just hit tab button every time you want the next bit of information on the next line.

    Example:

    BILL (tab) JONES (tab) 2013 will yield the following result when the text file is merged into SignLab:

    BILL
    JONES
    2013
     

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Jan 25, 2013
  9. SolitaryT

    SolitaryT Member

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    What RIP software do you have? We use SignLab and Illustrator and print through VersaWORX, which has a variable data function, but you have to set it up like a cut path and then use an Excel file that's saved some weird way (with no commas or some bull$h!t like that), but once you figure it out, it's not too bad. I think I remember Wasatch having something similar.
     
  10. petepaz

    petepaz Major Contributor

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    NJ/NY/PA
    the roland tech guy showed us that in versa once but i need to practice with it
    (seemed a little tricky at first but i am sure i can get the hang of it)
     
  11. SolitaryT

    SolitaryT Member

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    It's stupid easy once you get the hang of it. You just need to create a VDP path like a Cut Path in whatever your design software is, and then you can do it all in VersaWORX. The only bad part is that it's a little difficult to edit the font and color of the Variable Data.
     
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