Trying to make decision

Ask any questions you have before you make a decision
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Scrappy1
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Trying to make decision

Post by Scrappy1 » Tue Nov 29, 2016 5:16 am

Hello, I am new here and am trying to research the best option for me. I have a busy side business with a vinyl cutter. Currently making a lot of decals and tshirts . I am purchasing printed vinyl which is quite expensive. I am really interested in printing the patterns myself. I am on the fence if I should go for the bigger machine vs the BN 20.
Several things I am considering-- I may want to print and sell the vinyl if I design patterns. If so would the BN be good enough for that? It seems there would be waste as most the printed I buy is 12x12 or 12x24. So there would be the 6-8 inches of width left.
Second, if I made tshirts with the BN 20 how intricate of designs can I do ? Right now my vinyl cutter can cut very intricate designs. I believe the cutting is a bit slow with the BN 20. .. .?
Should I invest the extra and get a 30" machine ? If so I feel I would definitely need to sell printed vinyl. Like the patterned vinyl I am currently buying from etsy and such.

If any of that makes sense and anyone could give me some advice I would greatly appreciate it.
Thanks in advance ,
LD

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mrtn
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Re: Trying to make decision

Post by mrtn » Tue Nov 29, 2016 7:36 am

If there's any kind of doubt in BN-20 capability and if you're even a tiny bit open to the idea of getting a 30" machine, go for it. The 300-models are much more flexible machines, quicker to operate, less waste, free to use any width of media, standalone and better resale value.
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Joe Wigzell
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Re: Trying to make decision

Post by Joe Wigzell » Tue Nov 29, 2016 10:04 am

Hiya Scrappy,

Sounds like you're ready to make a step up and start reaping those profits for yourself!

As mrtn said, if possible it is normally best to go for the biggest/fastest machine possible as this gives you more flexibility and scope. But it may be best for you to see both in action and run some tests with some of your designs etc. If this is something you'd be interested in let me know!

Cheers
Joe Wigzell
Academy and Creative Centre Manager
Roland DG UK Ltd
http://www.rolanddg.co.uk

Scrappy1
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Re: Trying to make decision

Post by Scrappy1 » Tue Nov 29, 2016 1:54 pm

Thank you both so much. I am struggling with this decision because it is a side business. I want to make my production easier to save time but yet be able to afford the lease and make profit. It does sound like if I work the business the right way then I should definitely be able to achieve both. It is a big decision.
If I go for the 30' new Roland Truevs does it cut intricate designs? Sometimes I have tshirts with more intricate fonts.

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Joe Wigzell
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Re: Trying to make decision

Post by Joe Wigzell » Tue Nov 29, 2016 2:29 pm

Both/all of the Roland print and cut devices can cut very intricate shapes/details...it is often more down to the material as to what you can achieve. In effect you have the same thing as a normal plotter inside a printer, so no reason for it not to be able to achieve intricate cuts.
It normally is a big decision and you're right to look into the options and ask the questions :geek:
Joe Wigzell
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Roland DG UK Ltd
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Scrappy1
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Re: Trying to make decision

Post by Scrappy1 » Tue Nov 29, 2016 3:35 pm

How hard is it to learn the software? I am a newbie with Adobe . I may take a class on it. I will be importing purchased designs to print and cut vs. really designing them.

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Joe Wigzell
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Re: Trying to make decision

Post by Joe Wigzell » Tue Nov 29, 2016 4:05 pm

VersaWorks is the RIP that runs the machines and is nice and easy and simple to learn to get started...with some more advanced features when you get to it.
As for artworking/design, Adobe or similar is what you'd likely go for (also Corel, SignLAB) and even though you are getting purchased designs you still need an understanding to be able to edit and add things like cut lines.
This stage of the process is something not to be overlooked in my experience. Getting on some classes or tutorials would be good, get a head start. Also when you get a bit further down the line we run a couple of 1 day courses which are aimed at the print side of both Adobe (Illustrator) and Corel.
Joe Wigzell
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Roland DG UK Ltd
http://www.rolanddg.co.uk

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mrtn
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Re: Trying to make decision

Post by mrtn » Tue Nov 29, 2016 4:35 pm

IMHO Corel is much easier to learn and to cheaper purchase. Illustrator is the industry standard tho.
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Re: Trying to make decision

Post by PhillyDee » Tue Nov 29, 2016 6:32 pm

Best off finding demos of both machines, take your own files and get them to do the same job on both machines. I had a demo of the LEF-20 at Metaza in the UK, 4 hour drive to get there, but well worth the trip. Instead of the LEF-12, I went for the LEF-20 which is larger and faster (Glad I did, the LEF-12 would of been far too small!) and ended up buying it!

By far and away, the software is the most important part, it was a very steep learning curve, I had only ever used Corel to prepare vectors for my laser cutters (I am proficient on CAD mostly). Was an eye opener starting to do print work on it (Learned a lot in the last 6 months!)

Oh, and the rule of thumb is, get the largest size you can afford. Your next job will likely be bigger than what you can handle . . . .
Roland BN-20 (CMYKWh)
Roland Versa UV LEF-20 (CMYKGlWh)
HPC Laser - LS6840PRO 60W Laser cutter/engraver
HPC Laser - LS1290PRO 80W Laser cutter/engraver
HPC Laser - LS1290PRO 150W Laser cutter/engraver
Trotec Speedy 300 120W with JC Camera system and rotary axis.

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