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Thread: Desktop vinyl cutter

  1. #1
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    Default Desktop vinyl cutter

    Vsalon brain trust - I've got a OT one for ya.

    Does anyone have a recommendation for a hobby-level desktop vinyl cutter? I want to make decals and masks. I don't think I'd ever need anything larger than a sheet of letter paper, so I figure a tiny desktop unit would be okay.

    Ideally it would come with user friendly software for cutting paths or allow me to import files I can create elsewhere.
     

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    Default Re: Desktop vinyl cutter

    Cricut gets a good wrap...

    This gadget is gloriously addictive
    Colin Mclelland

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    Default Re: Desktop vinyl cutter

    I can't recommend the one I have (Silhouette HD) because I have no idea how to get it to align properly and I have wasted a bunch of vinyl. But they are really fun.
     

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    Default Re: Desktop vinyl cutter

    We made decals for probably a few thousand of our wheels with an A4 sized Graphtec Robo which was designed for scrapbooking and didn't cost a whole lot. We upgraded about a decade ago to a professional GE6000 model.

    The small hobby machine was ok and we made it work for us, but it's a bit like a mill or lathe: the bigger the better. Of course you're limited in size, especially in length which might be an issue for, say, downtube decals, but general quality, stiffness etc are much better on the larger, heavier machine.

    On the small machine we had to run the speed really low to get accurate cuts on small letters. Not really a problem for occasional use but certainly a pain when you're using it frequently.

    Good blades make a big difference and cost a LOT of money. We use the Graphtec blades designed for accurate detail and small letters and they make a big difference. They last a long time but they are expensive.

    The factory Graphtec software is pretty clunky but I haven't used it enough to see if its any good. We use Corel Draw and the Graphtec supplied plug-in, but there is also a plug-in for Illustrator if that's your thing.

    Let me know if you have any specific questions.

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    Default Re: Desktop vinyl cutter

    We used a Cricut Maker for PoP displays, etc. It wasn't the best but it was versatile --- we've used it to cut through chipboard, PET, vinyl, felt, etc. -- and hasn't failed us yet.

    The downside was that it's hard to gang multiple projects up (12" x 24" max cutting size) and just let it run. For that we upgraded to a Graphtec 6000.

    The software on both is pretty meh.
    elysian
    Tom Tolhurst

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