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  • Graphtec FC9000 Prismatic Cutting Problems

    Posted by Will J Bailey on July 17, 2020 at 11:14 pm

    Hello all,

    I am having an issue with cutting prismatic vinyl on my FC9000 and I’m hoping that someone might have some advice for me to try so that I can get a job finished before the end of the weekend!

    Today, while cutting some chevrons (305mm x 915mm) I found that my cutter was cutting them short by somewhere between 10mm and 20mm (varying each time but with the exact same size artwork sent via the Cutting Master plugin). The width was accurate each time and the cutting pressure was enough to cut through the vinyl while leaving a very light line on the backing.

    I tested the exact same artwork using normal vinyl with the cutting pressure readjusted back to normal and the sizing was completely accurate.

    During both of these cuts, the pinch rollers were set to Strong, Medium, Medium, Strong.

    Having put some thought into it this evening, my suspicions are that because the cutting pressure is much greater, the pinch rollers might be slipping and not tracking the cutting correctly. I.e the machine thinks it has cut the correct size however the vinyl hasn’t actually moved as far.

    Would anyone suggest increasing the pinch roller settings to ‘Strong’ all the way across perhaps? Or maybe slowing down the speed of the cutting? Any advice would be hugely appreciated to get me back on track and save me from wasting more meters of this expensive vinyl!

    Will J Bailey replied 2 years ago 3 Members · 3 Replies
  • 3 Replies
  • Chris Wool

    July 18, 2020 at 10:44 am

    think you answered your own question yes slow it right down all 4 rollers to high.

    a couple of things though prismatic reflective is known to dull blades quickly and because of the extra thickness the distance calibration will be off possibly by 3 -5 mm over 1 mt feed distance the across distance will always be correct.

  • Robert Lambie

    July 19, 2020 at 2:17 am

    Hi Will

    As Chris says, increase the pinch clamp settings too high and slow down the machine.

    When you say prismatic, I am thinking either you mean a polyester decorative foil type film or conspicuity grade reflective. Which vinyl is it you are cutting?

    Although you are getting inaccurate cuts, are the cuts themselves fine/good to weed?

    As you say, this can be costly trial and error mistakes. what I would suggest, “if you are cutting good” and just want to play around with the settings to get the tracking correct. using the same prismatic material, switch the blade to a pen. and let it draw directly onto the vinyl.

    This will allow you to check after it is complete, “if” the tracking closed the cut paths and met back where they started the cuts. if it is good, simply save the settings and using isopropanol or similar, wipe of the pen marks on the vinyl and replace the pen back to the knife.

  • Will J Bailey

    July 19, 2020 at 8:26 am

    Thank you both for your helpful replies!

    It feels like a bit of an ‘all the gear, no idea’ moment!

    After playing around with the settings some more, i.e pinch rollers on there strongest setting and slowing the machine right down I did manage to make some good cuts which were far more accurate.

    Rob, to answer your questions; the vinyl we were using was Hexis’ R9500 range of Prismatics. While we were getting the inaccurate cuts the shapes were absolutely fine to weed.

    Your idea of using a pen to test the tracking is a great idea and not one I that had crossed my mind at all but I’m sure will now come in handy in the future for tests. Thank you.

    A couple of images of this weekend’s project having donated the installation hours to the local, voluntary Search and Rescue organisation which I am also a part of.

    The prismatic parts relevant to the cutting issues in this post were the Battenburg stripes on each side of the van.

    Thanks again for all of your quick and helpful replies!