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  1. 1. Do you currently own a cutting machine?

    • Yes
    • No, but I want to in the next 12 months
    • No, I have no plans to buy one
    • I'm undecided at the moment


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I notice that it will not take the usual computer files, and they are working on something non-standard to allow you to connect your computer to it. I wouldn't trust anything that scans things in to cut; there is too much room for distortions and other errors.

HI

 

I brought a Brother ScanNCut back from the US last week. This was £250 from Amazon so rather cheaper than Create and Craft's £400 or so! The purchase was primarily for my wife's use and children's school craft projects. I did, though, bring back extra an mat and cutter for some railway experimentation - but dont expect to see much any time soon as I am some months behind the rest of you! On connectivity, you pass files to the machine via a USB stick as a PC is optional. Brother provides free access to their 'cloud' based (i.e. run it in a browser) drawing program if you want to work with your own designs since use of the built-in scanner is optional.

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It's a use tool this cutter you know....

 

I broke a halfshaft in the rear axle of the moggy van ten days ago. I was lucky I wasn't in a rush, nor had I managed to get more than 3 yds up the (rising) drive.

 

Out with the halfshafts, and yes the one that broke had do it just after the splines, with the broken bit mushroomed into the diff. Out with the similar bits from a spare axle (and my mrs moans about all the junk I have!) and jobs done.... except that I have no gaskets, and I know the ones you can buy are too thin.

 

So with a bit of work I produced both diff gasket and hub gaskets out of corn flakes packets, cut by the portrait. They had to be cut through with a scalpel, but they fitted first time and were much neater than the ones I used to make by hand!

attachicon.gifDSC06113.JPG

 

I've got them stored on file, so I can just cut them when I need them. Great!!

 

Andy G

Glad to see you are branching out Andy!

 

I had Morris 1000 van years ago.  It was very easy to work on, not that I am mechanically minded, but didn't know that these gaskets could be made from card board. Gone are days when you could set an engine's points with screw driver and a cigarette paper.....

 

All the best,

 

Colin 

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Thats the joy of 'proper' motors, you can fix them with all sorts of things! (leaking rad? Easy a bit of filler and a 2p coin, or an egg cracked into it!

 

Andy G

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A while back I mentioned the possibility of using a Cricut "Scoring tip with housing" as a cheap engraver/scriber. This is what it looks like out of the packet: 

post-3717-0-03602200-1390852881_thumb.jpg

 

The middle ridge needs to be filed off or it will not go in the Silhouette holder. Shown alongside a Silhouette cutter for comparison:

post-3717-0-44822300-1390852978_thumb.jpg

 

Here is the modified unit in the cutter:

post-3717-0-75336200-1390853004_thumb.jpg

 

Looking good, however the tip of the scoring tool is not very sharp and as a result it just runs over the styrene polishing the surface and not removing any material. Oh well, glad I tried it.

 

The scribing tool is simply held in place with a magnet so there are lots of possibilities in my using the housing to test out alternative scribing tips.

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Thoughts on CB09:

 

 

4) The blades seem to drag across the surface of the sheet when the blade is traversing and not cutting. It's not very deep but is noticable, and would show up more with paint I guess.

 

5) So far I have failed to get the CB09 to cut through any sheet, so i have to use a blade to break though.

 

Andy G

Used my CB09 tonight. With 20thou I did not have any issues with the blade dragging on the sheet however I have not been able to cut right through 20thou with any blade, CB09 or Silhouette even after 10 cuts so now design accordingly.

10thou then followed. Typically I tend to use 3 cuts for 10thou and with the CB09 this worked like a dream and cut right through.

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Hi Mike

 

Interestingly, I've not been able to cut through Evergreen .020", but I was able to cut through some .020" sheet that had a Beatties price label on it. I'll have a look to see if there's much difference in thickness (tolerances and all that).

 

cheers

 

Jason

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Cutting through 20thou is a bit of a hit & miss affair. I have tried Evergreen, Slaters and Javis styrene. Each have a slightly different feel with regard to flexibility and rigidity, and cutting manually with a knife there appears to be very slight differences in the density of the media

 

Probably the denser material resists the cutting blade sufficiently preventing complete breakthrough. On the other hand the denser material does snap cleaner, whilst the soft material does tend to rip slightly

 

Ron

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Just bought a Silhouette Portrait cutter... I've only had a quick play with it so far, but I'm very excited to see what I can do with it!

 

Has anyone used the Silhouette Connect plug-in and is it worth paying extra for? I used Adobe Illustrator for designing some of my models anyway, so it makes sense to use the plugin to print directly from it. It also sounds like you can have a bit more control over the cutting by using layers, which might help controlling the cutting order of the lines(?)

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Here's a Thought!,  Could you mount  a small electric motor in / on the head unit and spin one the engraving / mini router tools you would use with a Dremel type tool and therefore be able to engrave  or route, light materials with it? you would probably have to leave the lid off but I don't think that would be a problem.

 The Q

Edited by TheQ

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I have tried Evergreen, Slaters and Javis styrene. Each have a slightly different feel with regard to flexibility and rigidity,

For interest, which was which?  It would be interesting to know which is more flexible and which more 'snappable'

 

Mike

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Here's a Thought!,  Could you mount  a small electric motor in / on the head unit and spin one the engraving / mini router tools you would use with a Dremel type tool and therefore be able to engrave  or route, light materials with it? you would probably have to leave the lid off but I don't think that would be a problem.

 The Q

 

I doubt that the machine head is strong enough to allow this to be done.

 

Andy G

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Here's a Thought!,  Could you mount  a small electric motor in / on the head unit and spin one the engraving / mini router tools

I doubt the head would carry the weight, as Andy has written!  Perhaps some sort of flexible drive from a fixed motor might be feasible.  It would have to be long, though, to allow for the full traverse of the head.

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I doubt the head would carry the weight, as Andy has written!  Perhaps some sort of flexible drive from a fixed motor might be feasible.  It would have to be long, though, to allow for the full traverse of the head.

 

Again I don't think that would work either as (and I'm only guessing here!) the extra resistance of the flexi-drive would make it more difficult for the head to traverse correctly. Not to mention the strain on the belt and other drive components on what is a 'hobby' machine designed for 'girlies' to make 'pretty' cards. We are probably already pushing it harder than even its designers thought possible!

 

You can buy machines that will do the plotting and routing already, its just they cost more than a hundred quid!

 

Andy G

Edited by uax6

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For interest, which was which?  It would be interesting to know which is more flexible and which more 'snappable'

 

Mike

Hi, Mike

 

The Evergreen is ever so slightly less flexible and snaps cleaner, the density may be higher, and the 10 & 20 thou sheets I have measure 11.5 & 21.5 thou. respectively

 

The Javis and Slaters are similar to each other with more flex and can leave more rough edges when snapped, and the 10 & 20 thou sheets measure 10.0 & 20.5 thou.

 

The actual thicknesses may vary from batch to batch

 

For structures I prefer where possible to use Evergreen. For normal/general use I prefer Javis. The machine cutting is easier with Javis

 

Cheers

 

Ron

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Just bought a Silhouette Portrait cutter... I've only had a quick play with it so far, but I'm very excited to see what I can do with it!

 

Has anyone used the Silhouette Connect plug-in and is it worth paying extra for? I used Adobe Illustrator for designing some of my models anyway, so it makes sense to use the plugin to print directly from it. It also sounds like you can have a bit more control over the cutting by using layers, which might help controlling the cutting order of the lines(?)

Before spending out, you might find you can install the printer driver and simply print to it. If you check back through this post you will find where I install it and use it from Inkscape. The only downside is you do not get as much control of the cutter, but it does work. Should work with Illustrator

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I have followed up a suggestion made by raymw at post #394 of this thread.( http://www.rmweb.co.uk/community/index.php?/topic/79025-a-guide-to-using-the-silhouette-cameo-cutter/?p=1294473 ).  

He suggested using a grinding wheel dressing tool as a scriber.  The specific model he suggested is no longer available from Amazon but its 9.8mm diameter was rather large for the Silhouette penholder.  Instead, I have tried a 1/8" x 2" Round Shank Grinding Wheel Single Point Diamond Dresser Tool from Amazon.  EDIT see later post #577 for 6mm dia. tool,which is a better fit in the pen holder.  This fits easily into the pen holder and, with a net weight of only 4g, seems unlikely to overload the cutting head.  The diamond point was protected by a plastic cap and I reversed this to the other end, to provide a grip for the set-screws in the pen holder.

post-19820-0-25427600-1391017217.jpg

For a model that I'm currently planning, I shall need a diagonal planked floor, so I traced a drawing of this, using the Silhouette 'Studio' software, and then stuck an offcut of 30 thou styrene sheet onto the cutting mat.  I selected a 'thickness' (i.e. pressure) setting of 33 and double-cut mode, and then 'drew' on the styrene with the diamond point.  The results were very pleasing.  I have used oblique lighting in the following photos, to show the score marks more clearly and, in the first picture, I have not brushed off the swarf, to indicate what was removed.  The diagonal 'planks' are 2.3mm wide.

post-19820-0-29577200-1391017287.jpg

Remember that this was just a traced drawing, so the cut lines are a little strange in places, but a close-up shows the quality of the scribe lines.

post-19820-0-19034400-1391017311.jpg

Flushed with this success, I then mounted an offcut of 10 thou brass sheet on the cutting mat and repeated the identical process.  

post-19820-0-89678200-1391017332.jpg

Again the results look good, with clean sharp cuts.  There was a fair bit of plastic swarf on the end of the pen holder after cutting but this brushed off easily and the next photo is of the diamond tip after the two trials described above.

post-19820-0-93141100-1391017341.jpg

The machine showed no signs of distress during the drawing process, which seems to proceed exactly as if drawing with a pen. 

 

My mind is now racing with a whole new set of possibilities for this 'simple' cutter - diamond-etched plates, etc, etc :)

Mike

 

EDIT these dressers seem to have disappeared from Amazon - the supplier was named as 'sourcing map' and they list them at  http://www.sourcingmap.com/1mm-taper-point-3mm-shaft-grinding-diamond-diamond-dresser-cap-p-430823.html?currency=GBP&zenid=9ba7783952d253a8354f74558056e3ac

EDIT2 back again (1 Feb) http://www.amazon.co.uk/Round-Grinding-Single-Diamond-Dresser/dp/B00AUB86U0/ref=sr_1_5?s=diy&ie=UTF8&qid=1391251685&sr=1-5&keywords=diamond+dresser

EDIT3 (11 Mar) Larger shank (see Post #577) http://www.amazon.co.uk/Diameter-Tapered-Diamond-Dresser-Grinding/dp/B009IO8CK4/ref=sr_1_14?s=diy&ie=UTF8&qid=1394448896&sr=1-14&keywords=diamond+dresser

Edited by MikeOxon
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Wow, blimey Mike, you went out on a limb with brass there! It looks really impressive.

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Wow, blimey Mike, you went out on a limb with brass there! It looks really impressive.

Since the diamond point is simply 'drawing' on the surface, I didn't think it should cause a problem.  If anything, I suspect there was less drag than on the styrene - the scribe marks are very fine.

 

post-19820-0-87493000-1391023917.jpg

 

Mike

Edited by MikeOxon
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That's true, and they are.

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I had a bit of a strange problem tonight. I printed the same set of sides out twice from Inkscape (using the Silhouette printer driver), once n 15 thou and then again on 10 thou immediately afterwards. For some reason I've not fathomed, the 10 thou sides are 2mm too short. .I didn't have time to investigate further.

 

Has anyone else seen this?

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Mike O,

 

Do you think that you could re-profile the end of one of these tools make wide scribes, say about 0.5mm wide, so that planking is more easily seen?

 

Andy G

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Mike O,

 

Do you think that you could re-profile the end of one of these tools make wide scribes, say about 0.5mm wide, so that planking is more easily seen?

 

Andy G

 

Hello all, Andy g,

 

I think that re-profiling the diamond may take a bit of doing!

 

I don't have one of these M/Cs but I'm impressed with the work that you all are achieving with it. 

 

OzzyO.

Edited by ozzyo

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Indeed, I hadn't engaged brain!

 

I wonder what the end profile would need to be to give wide scores? Would a flat end with coned sides work?

 

Andy G

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Mike O,

 

Do you think that you could re-profile the end of one of these tools make wide scribes, say about 0.5mm wide, so that planking is more easily seen?

 

Andy G

I think that part of the success of the diamond is due to the small tip radius.  Guessing that this is around 5 thou diameter, The surface contact area on the brass sheet calculates to about 0.00002 square inches.  The cutter force at a 'thickness' setting of 33 is 230g (0.5 pounds), so the pressure over the contact area works out at around 25,460 lb/sq.in. (try that for a boiler pressure!!!)

 

This is why diamonds are used for applications such as LP record styli.  Other materials simply wear away under the pressure (even at a few grams playing weight):

 

post-19820-0-60101600-1391080040.jpg

 

Trying to increase the contact area would reduce the pressure and, hence the depth of cut. 

 

If the lines are not sufficiently visible,  I would suggest drawing a group of closely-spaced lines, rather than trying to increase the stylus size.  On my sample, the lines are quite clearly visible, though I haven't tried painting yet.

 

Mike

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I think that part of the success of the diamond is due to the small tip radius.  Guessing that this is around 5 thou diameter, The surface contact area on the brass sheet calculates to about 0.00002 square inches.  The cutter force at a 'thickness' setting of 33 is 230g (0.5 pounds), so the pressure over the contact area works out at around 25,460 lb/sq.in. (try that for a boiler pressure!!!)

 

 

Tested Foster Wheeler Boiler economiser boxes to 1800Lbs/sq in, working pressure is 1200 Lbs/ sq in, ya need plenty of nappy liners when it starts to creak and groan, tis also useful to have several rubber bands around the ankles of the boilersuit.

 

SS

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