Gerber vs MultiCam vs Colex

FishnSigns

New Member
Any strong opinions out there on the Gerber M3000 Turbo, the MultiCam Digital Express or the Colex Sharpcut? We have decided its time to invest in a flatbed cutting solution for our facility. Can't quite justify a Zund or Kongsberg, so we are looking at the next best. Also looking for opinions on conveyor vs no conveyor for the system. Thanks for the feedback.
 

FishnSigns

New Member
Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Going to a Zund demo next week to see if we can justify the $50-100K jump from the aforementioned machines.
 

particleman

Member
Since you aren't getting any replies, I can tell you my experience with the M3000. In short it is dated technology but reliable. The artpath software that runs it is pretty simple to use, but don't expect to be blown away by the interface. The machine is a tank, built pretty beefy. When I say dated technology I'm referring to the system that drives the machine and the optical sensor. The icut system is far superior, the gerber uses the old school laser eye which can be temperamental at times. It has a pot that can be adjusted, but as I said dated tech. The underlying operating system and software of the gerber is pretty dated also, adding and removing tools from the machine requires a com interface to DOS era style interface, from there you have to edit complex config files. Granted you don't need to use this menu very often (if ever). Three tool slots is very convenient and something that would be desirable if you were looking at other machines. We never had any issues with the router, although our machine was not a turbo. We did have issues with the oscillating knife tool wearing out and becoming very loud, although that tool was used pretty hard in our shop.

Now, all that being said the M3000 is a nice value, however some of the features of the high end cutters might be worth it. We would literally take a day cutting posters at on the M3000, whereas the ZUND as I understand it will do an entire roll start to finish with no intervention. Pretty significant time savings depending on the type of work you do!
 

HulkSmash

Member
Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Going to a Zund demo next week to see if we can justify the $50-100K jump from the aforementioned machines.

There's no need for that. The Mutli Cam digital express is awesome, and they're right out of fort Collins.
 

jfjackson

JFJackson
Gerber M 3000 turbo

We have had a Gerber M 3000 Turbo for two and a half years. (Plus a CAT) 3 edges, D2000 several cutters.
The first 6 months were a night mare. Gerber gave good support, but took a long time to figure out the problem.
Gerber has changed completely. Poor support, extremely expensive parts. We have issues with the oscillating knife tool wearing out and becoming very loud, although that tool Not a lot of use but can't be repaired. They want $5000.00 for a simple air tool.
I have been a Gerber customer for 25 years and spent over a half a million dollars on their hardware and software.
Ashamed to see a great company from the past go down hill.
 

particleman

Member
Yup! The $5,000 price tag on that oscillating knife is insane! We rebuilt one ourselves to save some money. I can't remember the name of the company that makes the air motor, but you can purchase them through one of their dealers for $500 or so I believe. Our shop went through 3-4 knives in ~3 years.
 

supersignmart

New Member
I was looking at the same equipment you were, also I thought I couldn't afford a Zund. Glad I kept looking and boy was I wrong.
I went to SGIA in Orlando and ended up leaving with a Zund. So glad I went and kept looking. Although of the rest, I really liked the Multi-Cam but was very afraid of the service I would get, especially after the salesman wouldn't even followup. If you have trouble buying one what would service be like??
 

FishnSigns

New Member
We have been running our Colex for almost 2 months now and I have absolutely no regrets about the purchase. The table is a workhorse, the support has been great, the software is super easy to use, and it's plenty fast. We had a big drag knife project last week - super detailed, was on the table for 12 hours one day and another 5-6 hours the next. The Colex did a great job, didn't even flinch. We just kept feeding material, collecting and our client was very happy with the project. We have cut just about everything in our shop at this point with only one minor issue. We had some challenges with the kiss cutting tool at first. They worked with us and even developed a brand new prototype tool to "fix" the problem. We have been testing it and it seems to have fixed the problems we were having. Not sure one of the other companies would go above and beyond like Colex did. Time will tell if it holds up to heavy use over the next 5+ years but at this point I would highly recommend the table.
 

Fernando Chavez

FernandoATX
We have been running our Colex for almost 2 months now and I have absolutely no regrets about the purchase. The table is a workhorse, the support has been great, the software is super easy to use, and it's plenty fast. We had a big drag knife project last week - super detailed, was on the table for 12 hours one day and another 5-6 hours the next. The Colex did a great job, didn't even flinch. We just kept feeding material, collecting and our client was very happy with the project. We have cut just about everything in our shop at this point with only one minor issue. We had some challenges with the kiss cutting tool at first. They worked with us and even developed a brand new prototype tool to "fix" the problem. We have been testing it and it seems to have fixed the problems we were having. Not sure one of the other companies would go above and beyond like Colex did. Time will tell if it holds up to heavy use over the next 5+ years but at this point I would highly recommend the table.


Hello, could you tell me please what is your experience with your colex cutter in this past years? Are you still happy with it? Or would you rather buy a different cutter of the opportunity arise?

We are looking into Esko, Colex and Multicam.

Thank you!
 

FishnSigns

New Member
Hello. It's still running pretty well. There have been some maintenance issues but we have worked through them. Overall still happy with the purchase.
 

StevenGC

New Member
Hello. It's still running pretty well. There have been some maintenance issues but we have worked through them. Overall still happy with the purchase.

What kind of maintenance issues? We've had ours for about a year. Wondering what to expect longer term. It's been great so far. Within the first six months, we had the router decide to ignore registration marks and start cutting into the table. So we have 2 cuts about a quarter inch long into the acrylic table caused by glitches. Have had the camera not provide video a few times. Happens about once a month. Recently had a big aluminum sign job... started with a fresh T00530 bit and heard an odd noise... seems the bit grabbed the aluminum and it pulled it about .05 inches down. Was cutting .080 alum in two passes... except it was cutting almost all the way through the first pass. Reseated bit, measured, cut all the other signs with no problem. Do you use bits other than those provided by colex?
 

Brandon708

Member
Hello. It's still running pretty well. There have been some maintenance issues but we have worked through them. Overall still happy with the purchase.

What kind of maintenance issues? We've had ours for about a year. Wondering what to expect longer term. It's been great so far. Within the first six months, we had the router decide to ignore registration marks and start cutting into the table. So we have 2 cuts about a quarter inch long into the acrylic table caused by glitches. Have had the camera not provide video a few times. Happens about once a month. Recently had a big aluminum sign job... started with a fresh T00530 bit and heard an odd noise... seems the bit grabbed the aluminum and it pulled it about .05 inches down. Was cutting .080 alum in two passes... except it was cutting almost all the way through the first pass. Reseated bit, measured, cut all the other signs with no problem. Do you use bits other than those provided by colex?

Any updates on the Colex?
 

Olympic Print

1 year experience
Any updates on the Colex?

We have had the camera issue too. Not showing video. They ended up sending us a new camera and several new cords over the time. But finally we got a engineer who said they needed to put a filter on the wires. They sent it to use and we have not had any more problems with the camera.
I have had issues with the knife coming down and not set to 0. I realized when you set home the colex sets 0. So I found the sensor and cleaned it and now we dont have any more problems with that either. We are going to do that every month when we do the other maintenance.
 
Top