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  1. #1
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    Sep 2007
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    Looking to buy a vinyl Cutter

    Looking to pick up my 1st Vinyl cutter. Im brand new to vinyl but not to graphics/design

    Im a Graphic Design student and i thought it would be a good idea to sell stickers/signs/car graphics/business lettering and logos on ebay to make some extra money.

    What would be the best Vinyl cutter for under 2,500.00?
    I found 2 that looked decent from a good e-bay seller.
    http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...ksid=p3907.m29
    http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...ksid=p3907.m29

    Are those 2 good or should i look at another in the 2,500.00 range?

    Do cutters/plotters in that range only cut 1 color graphics?

    Can plotters/cutters do anything other than cut graphics?

    How long do they typically last before needing new parts?

    Thanks!

  2. #2
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    Sep 2007
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    Cutter

    I have been using roland decal cutters for over 15 years. The first one never quit, it just got upgraded to a wider one. They can cut from the latest corel drawing software or even old dos cad software with the right command set.
    The one i use now is the pro 30" model and I paid right at 2599 for it...maybe a touch more. Roland is some good stuff.

    Swain

  3. #3
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    Do yourself a favor and start with a cheap chinese cutter. A artsign cutter from ebay that cuts 34"s is a good place to start. This will get you familiar with the process and get you rolling. Beware of the cheap vinyl on ebay though.

  4. #4
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    I have 3 plotters, a Graphtec, which is basically bulletproof made for high volume, running all day long, an older Gerber that's now backup with some issues, and a Copam (Chinese) that I have been trying out. The Copam is under $1,000 and should work for for your application, allowing you more money to spend on buying vinyl.

    You can make signs or stickers with 2-100 or more colors, but each color is loaded into the plotter and cut individually. For stickers there are tricks to getting the colors to line up correctly, but keep the designs simple.

    There are machines (like a Roland) that will print and cut but you are looking at $10,000 or more.

    Plotters can use a ball point or felt tipped pen to draw vector files onto paper. They will not fill it in though, just draw outlines.

    My Graphtec has been running all day for over 5 years, and I have replaced blades and cutting strips only. (knocking on wood). My Gerber lasted about 4 years before having some expensive wearout. The Copam I have had a while but is not used as much, and so far no breaking.

    Look at the CP2500:

    http://www.uscutterdirect.com/index.html

  5. #5
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    Mar 2003
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    I just bought a PCUT 25" from USCutter off ebay... Awesome machine!!!! Very nice!

    taus
    Thanks,
    tauseef
    www.cuttingedgecnc.com

  6. #6
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    Dec 2004
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    Taus
    I haven't looked at the zone in months, way too many work hours
    Good to see your post in vinyl.
    Anything new with the K2 machine?
    I bought one of the Desay Master 380 off ebay a year ago from dcsign, its a good machine, excellent + with a price factor.

    http://cgi.ebay.com/New-36-Vinyl-sig...QQcmdZViewItem

    These will do paint and sandblast mask also.

    Learning curve stuff, the cheap cutters are probably good enough for your initial needs. The software and material selection make or break the project.

  7. #7
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    Nov 2007
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    Any plotter will cut sandblast mask and airbrish mask or vinyl. You have to adjust the pressure for what you are cutting but that all depends on what shape your blade is in and the thickness of the material. I have a 30" Roland Plotter (3 years) and a 54" Roland Versacam inkjet printer/cutter (2.5 Years). Both work great. the biggest thing is the software you use to run them. plotters are only a machine like a CNC or Mill. they only run the information you send to it. I use Sign Lab Print/Cut program along with photoshop for the digital printing. I had a large client though we were charging to much to letter his fleet of semi's so he bought a Linx cutter and used the free program it came with. to say the least his trucks looked like junk and he could not even do a simple arched text for his logo with that system. it is not the plotters fault it was the software but he got everything he needed for about $3,000 and ended up selling it on e-bay for $1200, 6 months later. I letter all his truck again. and he does not say anything about the price anymore after he realized that anyone can buy equipement but only a few can run equipement with good results.

    you may want to buy directly from a supplier that way they will support you better and also find a local supplier so you don't have to stock so much vinyl.

  8. #8
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    What media do you use for masking? My vinyl is just too sticky

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by carbidecraters View Post
    What media do you use for masking? My vinyl is just too sticky

    not sure what you mean? are you talking transfer tape? or what media do you use when cutting airbrush mask?

    when you say masking I thing masking tape that is the stuff by R-Tape that transfers the cut parts to your surface.

    if you mean what to use when airbrushing, you have to use Airbrush mask NOT VINYL. vinyl works in a pinch I have done it but do NOT suggest it. vinyl have too much tack it will tear off your fresh paint and leave glue behind. I use FDC Paintmask 2901/2951 Series. it cuts just like vinyl but has the tackiness of 3M time line tape. you still should not apply to wet paint or leave on for over 24HRs.

    Gerber also makes a paint mask

  10. #10

    Re: Looking to buy a vinyl Cutter

    I have been making some research concerning cutting plotters. There are Plotters who do the job that you require which cost way less. There is a website which I found that has a Plotter comparison. On there you´ll find three devices which they compare. They are all able to meet your demands. The Website is called: https://www.plotter-city.com/schneid...t-vs-powercut/

    And now to your questions: cutting plotters are also able to draw with a cutting plotter. There are special pens that you can use for this.
    Also the graphics can have a different color as well. The cutting software splits the colors into as many jobs as you need.
    Another thing that you´ve mentioned were the usual time this mashine runs without the need of spare parts. These vinyl cutters usually run more than 10 years. It can of course some minor things can always happen but there are enough spare parts to solve the problem.

  11. #11
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    Apr 2003
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    525

    Re: Looking to buy a vinyl Cutter

    I bought a 34" USCutter SC about 4-5 years ago. I even went with a refurbished one they had in stock to save a little more. I was surprised when I received it as it looked perfect and brand new. I've cut hundreds of projects over the years and its worked flawlessly. Had a couple minor issues the first few months and their customer service was great. Answered any questions and when it needed a part (USB connector on the control board was iffy) they sent it quickly, without question and shipped for free. Now that I know how handy these cutters are and how much use it's gotten, the only thing I think I'd like to have is a machine with the automatic registration mark sensors (ARMS), so you can print with your inkjet and then cut out stickers or transfers and such precisely. They sell a model called the Titan III that has the ARMS, servo motors and vacuum hold down that looks pretty nice for the price and is well below your budget.

  12. #12
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    Jul 2019
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    There are numerous trustworthy brands in the vinyl cutting space like Brother, Cricut, Silhouette. There's no such thing as a perfect machine. They all have flaws.
    After a lot of research and numerous amazon reviews and comparisons articles later I had to choose between 2 models. Someone had to win the fight between the Brother Scan and Cut vs Silhouette Cameo and when I read this article https://freshlypickedblog.com/brothe...houette-cameo/, the pros and cons of both machines I decided to go with the Cameo machine.
    Why? Because if was cheaper and it was great for vinyl cutting, exactly what I needed.
    I have this machine for 2 years now and it still works great without issues.

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