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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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10 minutes ago, ISW said:

If you have a Hobbycraft shop nearby you can go and actually see the disc cutter in the shop. Details online at:

https://www.hobbycraft.co.uk/cricut-rotary-blade-kit/640204-1000

 

Based on being 12mm diameter, and the disc being exposed, and allowing for the axle pin, it looks like it would cut through 4mm or maybe 5mm thickness before the axle would 'snag' on the material being cut. So I'd image in would cut foam type materials of this thickness. Not sure how it would cope with styrene though.

 

I have cut 2mm craft foam with my portrait.

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Hi. Just purchased a SIlhouette Portrait 2, in part encouraged by this great post - thanks JCL and Mike Trice.

 

Not making any progress so far. First the PC wouldn't recognise the Portrait until I discovered it worked in a USB2 and not a USB3 port. Then SIlhouette Studio - latest version v4.2.471 - popped up a message that it detected the Portrait but then I couldn't clear the message! I've been in contact with SIlhouette America but due to the time zone differences it's taking time. Their first response was in typical MS style: uninstall the software and delete all remaining files (lots) and reinstall. As expected made no difference.

 

Oh, I did not install Bonjour as I've no Apple devices and bad experience of Bonjour in the past. Also it opens up ones firewall! I told them that I didn't install it and they haven't said it's essential.

 

I looked at the option for driving the Portrait direct from Inkscape. I found 2 options: EtherGraf and fablabnbg. Both are on Github and with both solutions the Window installation is more complex and involves Python compiling. They both use libusb0.dll. Fablabnbg points to http://zadig.akeo.ie/ to install this but I hit a brick wall as zadig doesn't find the usb driver for the Portrait.

 

It seems earlier versions of SIlhouette Studio has a separate Windows USB driver on the CD for the Portrait but the latest version doesn't have a CD and the downloaded version doesn't include it. In fact SIlhouette America have an FAQ that says it is no longer needed - seems to have the "driver" built in. That doesn't stop Windows trying to find a driver and eventually giving up.

 

I asked SIlhouette America if they can provide the driver and if it will work with the Portrait 2 but they ignored my question. One option is to somehow get the driver (hint ;) ) and try it!

 

Has anyone with the Portrait 2 managed to drive it directly from Inkscape?

 

Thanks for reading this long post asking for help.

 

EDIT.

Just got a reply from SIlhouette America

Quote

Regarding the Windows driver, unfortunately, that is no longer an option in the latest version. And the Portrait 2 has to run on at least version 3.8 or higher. I am really sorry for the inconvenience.

 

Still maybe worth a try but obviously new functionality like the auto blade may not work.

 

They have still ignored my question about the popup message re the "Portrait being detected" not clearing. Anyone with a Portrait 2 can tell me if there is a way to clear it. I tried escape but no good. You can see there is no close button.

1607147493_Portraitdetecteddialogbox.jpg.356ff2638a45dd2bcb4e6a3866a9a206.jpg

 

 

 

Edited by Alan_LSWR
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On 09/04/2019 at 18:57, Siberian Snooper said:

I would opt for the curio these days,  the Cameo tends not to cut too well in the centre.

 

 

Any thoughts as to the 8.5" x 6" Curio cutting mat is too restrictive compared to the 12" x 12" on the cameo? - I'm mainly working in 4mm scale, but might occasionally want to tackle a 7mm wagon or 4 wheel coach...

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I wouldn't have thought a rotary cutter is suitable for our purposes, at an internal corner like a window and cutting right through, you would have two nicks into the remaining face that is the thickness of the material, but if it means your wife gets use out of it too while you use the blade, it helps the costings.

 

It looks like the Cricut handles .svg files so that tends to solve the drawing issues.  Even with that pressure, I would still be inclined to use multiple cuts, just as you would by hand, to avoid distortion.

 

At the moment Hobbycraft are doing Cricut demonstrations on Wednesday mornings.  If someone could pop along with various thicknesses of branded styrene, we could have an answer.  Unfortunately, I don't have one very near me.

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22 hours ago, Richard Jones said:

Any thoughts as to the 8.5" x 6" Curio cutting mat is too restrictive compared to the 12" x 12" on the cameo? - I'm mainly working in 4mm scale, but might occasionally want to tackle a 7mm wagon or 4 wheel coach...

 

Hi

 

You can get a 8.5” x 12” Curio cutting mat.

 

Cheers

 

Paul

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It's been a long time since I posted anything on the subject - I cut the sides out back in January with the inner sides (6 pieces) being made of 20 thou with a pair of 10 thou overlays for the outer skin.

 

The 6 inner sections needed all the apputures finished off with a scalpel which has proved a steady and often mind numbing job which has taken place in an odd half an hour here and there. Which to be honest was probably as well.

 

They are not the easiest of thing to take good photos of being white and they would perhaps have benefited from being primed first but having taken so long to get this far I was eager to share where I had got to.

 

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48038021828_9c61a56f34_b.jpg

48038084467_76ee40ee3b_b.jpg

 

48038084207_6b9e3ef05b_b.jpg

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48038083897_204ce07fe9_b.jpg

 

The intention is to build an inner box a, la, the David Jenkinson method and fit the ends on last.

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  • 2 months later...

Hi,

 

I promised myself I wasn't going to buy a machine until I had some cutting files ready, but..... seeing the way the £ is moving against other currencies and as Silhouette machines are made in the US, I decided they weren't going to get any cheaper so have bought a Curio....

 

I'll let you know how I get on....

 

cheers

 

Richard

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On 06/06/2019 at 20:28, Alan_LSWR said:

Hi. Just purchased a SIlhouette Portrait 2, in part encouraged by this great post - thanks JCL and Mike Trice.

 

Not making any progress so far. First the PC wouldn't recognise the Portrait until I discovered it worked in a USB2 and not a USB3 port. Then SIlhouette Studio - latest version v4.2.471 - popped up a message that it detected the Portrait but then I couldn't clear the message! I've been in contact with SIlhouette America but due to the time zone differences it's taking time. Their first response was in typical MS style: uninstall the software and delete all remaining files (lots) and reinstall. As expected made no difference.......

 

Further to this, my Portrait 1 has stopped working.  This from Silhouette

 

"Hi David,

Thank you for your email. I am so sorry that those steps didn't resolve this issue. Unfortunately, as of August 1, 2019 Silhouette America is no longer able to support USB connection between Windows 10 (1809, 1903, or above), particularly USB 3.0, or other related newer hardware and the following Silhouette models:

CAMEO 1

Portrait 1

Silhouette SD

Original Silhouette

We apologize for any frustration or inconvenience this may cause. Unfortunately, as some technology advances, we are eventually unable to provide compatible hardware to accommodate these changes."

 

So less than 2 years old and will not work with an up to date PC!  Not good.

 

Alan_LSWR: did you sort out your problem?

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Hi David

I did sort my problems after some hours work. It was a bit of a fluke I think. Here's my email to Silhouette without the screenshots:

Quote

    Well there is no 4.1.279 in the downloads but there is a v4.1.479 and v4.2.279 so I downloaded both.

    First I uninstalled v4.2.471 that has the problem with the Detected dialog box not clearing and then installed v4.1.479 without Bonjour.

    On startup I got both the New Silhouette Detected dialog and the Welcome dialog, See screen shot "Start up with silhouette-studio_v4.1.479". Note the last line of text is partly hidden.

    The New Silhouette Detected dialog had an OK button. At first I could not click on this button but after I cleared the Welcome dialog I could then clear the Detected dialog. I powered on the Portrait and the work area changed size. I closed SS and restarted. There was no Detected dialog or Welcome dialog.

    I uninstalled v4.1.479 and installed v4.2.279 without Bonjour. On starting there was no Detected dialog or Welcome dialog.

    I uninstalled v4.2.279 and once again installed v4.2.471 without Bonjour. On starting there was no Detected dialog or Welcome dialog!!!

    My guess is that that by installing v4.1.479 and clearing the Detect and Welcome dialogs the registry was updated so that these dialogs are not shown again and fortunately these registry entries do not get deleted when uninstalling so the next version does not display the dialogs.

    I noticed that in version v4.1.479 the Detect dialog is a Windows dialog but in v4.2.471 SS is using a custom dialog - see screen shot "silhouette-studio Portrait detected dialog box".

    So looks like the problem has been resolved after quite some hours work :(

 

 

Re the lack of USB2 support. Having just bought a Portrait I'm very annoyed they are selling stock that they knew would not be supported. I'm currently on Windows 7 but no doubt will reluctantly move to 10.

 

Whilst electrically a USB 2 device should work in a USB 3 port it seems that it is dependent on a Windows driver and often as not the driver is provided (or not) by the device manufacturer.

 

Doing a bit of quick googling, it seems that new PCs no longer support USB2, even through a USB3 port. I thought of using a USB2 hub but I found this explanation in reply to someone who could not get a GPS device to work:

Quote

@BigChris That wouldn't work. The USB2 hub still needs a USB2 port on the computer. USB2 and USB3 are completely different hardware technologies that happen to share the same connector/cables. Any device/hub that supports both internally has 2 separate interfaces for the 2 types of ports. USB2 devices talk USB2, USB3 devices talk USB3. You can't convert internally between the 2 inside the hub. A hub can't magically convert USB2 signals into USB3. – Tonny Jun 30 '16 at 15:00

 

Caveat: poster may not be right!

 

Would installing USB2 PCI card help? It would presumably come with its own driver or do Portrait 1s have some peculiar interface?

 

Or maybe run Windows 7 in a Virtual Machine? I run XP in Virtual Box and on a 3.5GHz PC it runs fine. I do store all my XP user data in a shared drive with the Windows 7 system so that my XP user data gets backed up when backing up my Win 7 user data.

 

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Was so excited that I manged to pick up my Silhouette Cameo 3 this afternoon that I brought in home and set it up instead of packing to go on holiday.

 

I printed out page 1 of the scalescene  footbridge that I'd prepared in Silhouette Studio with the registration marks and then put it onto the cutting mat. First issue was that it didn't seem to want to load the cutting mat at first, but eventually managed to work it out. It seemed that the rollers just didn't want to grip at first.

 

I then sent my file to cut. I wasn't expecting it to be perfect first go, but it was a disaster. It took the cutting mat through which I took it to be scanning for the registration marks and then back again to start cutting, but no where near the edges of the print out. It then moved the mat about a little before almost unloading and then started to cut through the top of the mat and then get jammed.

 

I cancelled and unloaded, but what I'd not seen at the start was that where it had cut it had gone straight through the mat.

As I go away in the morning I've packed it away for now, but has anyone else experienced this? I've posted on the silhouette and scalescences facebook pages, so hopefully someone can point me towards what I've done wrong. I went through the setup guide and youtube videos and can't see anything I've missed. I've then been going through this rather long topic which had convinced me to buy one in the first place having seen what could be achieved. 

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9 hours ago, jonhall said:

Turnsec - you realised that there are two load buttons, one for with cutting mat and one without?

 

Only one on the touch screen that I'm seeing. Going to see if there's a firmware update.

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From the manual: "Turn the Silhouette CAMEO® on by pressing the power button and waiting for the machine to start up. To feed the cutting mat into the Silhouette, lift the lid, align the left edge of the mat with the blue alignment mark on the left side of the machine, press the mat against the white rollers, and press the “Load cut mat” button on the LOAD screen. Loading a material that has its own backing and does not require a cutting mat (such as vinyl), requires a similar process as above but you should select “Load media” instead."

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On 24/08/2019 at 22:19, MikeTrice said:

Interesting. This video suggests there are just "Load" and "Unload" buttons:

 

 

I went through the videos and I only get the load and unload options.

 

I've found this article which explains that its a difference with the cameo 3 https://caughtbydesign.com/2017/03/16/silhouette-basics-loading-the-mat/

I've checked as I have the files with me that I was attempting to cut and its set correctly to the cameo 12 x 12 cutting mat. When i get home going to check that the roller bar is in place correctly.

 

Edited by Turnesc
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  • 2 weeks later...

I see that the Cameo 4 is in pre-release, with a claimed 5kg of cutting force. I imagine that there will be a price-tag to go with that extra force, but perhaps the Cameo 3 will be on sale as the 4 become available at retailers around the world.

 

Advance orders being taken by a US company here: https://www.swingdesign.com/products/silhouette-cameo-4.

 

There is a craft-oriented review here: https://www.silhouetteschoolblog.com/2019/09/silhouette-cameo-4-review.html

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1 hour ago, aardvark said:

I see that the Cameo 4 is in pre-release, with a claimed 5kg of cutting force. I imagine that there will be a price-tag to go with that extra force, but perhaps the Cameo 3 will be on sale as the 4 become available at retailers around the world.

 

Advance orders being taken by a US company here: https://www.swingdesign.com/products/silhouette-cameo-4.

 

There is a craft-oriented review here: https://www.silhouetteschoolblog.com/2019/09/silhouette-cameo-4-review.html

By luck, more than judgement, it looks like my delaying purchase until ready to use it, seems to have been a good idea as far as facilities of a cameo are concerned..

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  • 3 weeks later...

I finally got round to unpacking and using my Portrait recently (having only had it since Xmas 2016!)

 

Installed the Studio software and spend some time just seeing what it could do.

 

Decided on an H0 scale BR CCT for my first project and created the basic components (side, vents, doors and windows). Found it easy and straightforward to use and liking the grouping function to copy/paste the regular elements to form a side, then grouping that and copy/pasting more complete sides. Also used the line colour function to differentiate outline and window cuts from vent and door scoring. 

 

Cut the outer sides in 10 thou plasticard (blade 10/downforce 33/passes 2) and found the machine had cut just through the plasticard, leaving the window blanks on the sticky sheet when the sides were peeled off.

 

Did a modified version of the side (no vents/doors) with enlarged window apertures and cut those in 20 thou for inner sides. 

 

I did also try 40 thou floors, but these were right at the limit of what my Portrait would take. 

 

Being happy with the CCT, I reused its basic components to also do some GUV sides, again in H0. 

 

And l've also designed and cut an LT signal cabin (based on Farringdon cabin) in 4mm for a friend's LT micro layout

IMG_20190901_171221.jpg

IMG_20190929_181646.jpg

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I've just started experimenting with a Silhouette Cameo that I bought second hand a year ago. I tried out the Silhouette Studio software and found it claims to read DXF files. However it made a mess of opening the dxf I created of a window frame in Turbocad, The ghost image, upper left, was deleted from the original.  If I set the import option to Fit to Page, I get a smaller version which does fit on the page.  However the original is 68mm x 45mm. And why does it miss out the left hand verticals?

Failing that does Studio have linear copy or array copy options? so I can just create it again from scratch?

 

 

1534257141_dxforiginal1.jpg.01fa93289b6b045f7ed8117714abdbc9.jpg

dfx test1.jpg

Edited by geoff_nicholls
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Having seen and spoken to Rob Pulham demonstrating his machine, I was very impressed with the results but really felt I could not take on another learning curve as I am still busy working out how to get the best out of my 3d printer - but...... SWMBO had been musing the same for her quilting projects and after a brief and fairly one sided conversation, I discovered that a Cricut Maker had been ordered for us!

 

Not done any railway projects so far but initial impressions are very favourable. Extremely simple to get working, load the software, plug it in and off it went. (Windows 10 laptop). They are / have addressed the concern about internet connection as a beta version of the software on the desktop is available and it seems fine.

 

Very impressed with the rotary cutting blade which engages with a gear drive on the Maker to move it  clock and counterclockwise as it cuts very smooth curves.

 

It was bought with a few additions including 12 X 24 mat which would be more than enough for the sort of projects I have in mind.

 

Only condition from SWMBO is that I use my own cutters and mats.

 

Looked at the other material available off the shelf in Hobbycraft which included Cricut packs of 2mm MDF which I must assume it is capable of cutting. Just wonder how it would fare in comparison with a laser cutter?

 

As and when I progress some projects, will share with you. 

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