Ken Beyer said:One thing though is that when I print right to the edge of the cut path the vinyl curls up and away from the backing..annoying in that respect.
Steve C. said:I have no experience with the VersiCam so all that I know is what I have heard. Two things convinced me to get the Mutoh, It's faster, and it is considered better to have a separate cutting machine rather than an All-in-one.
GraphiXtreme said:How clean does your room need to be to successfully operate this equipment? Can it be in a 'slightly' dirty environment, or would you just be asking for trouble?
GraphiXtreme said:Another question/concern from a similar thread is media. From the looks of it, there isn't a lot of 48" material and 54" is much more common - any advice or experience on that? Do you print on all kinds of media, or do you only use what is included with the profiles? Similarly, sounds like the media profile is one of the most important things to have right. But, I still get varying degrees of info depending on who I talk to. Some say the profile has to be near perfect or the prints just won't come out. Others say that you can use the same profile for lots of materials with very little color shift. What has been your EXPERIENCE with media profiling?
GraphiXtreme said:What about software?
GraphiXtreme said:I am still not sure of lamination requirements. I know that any vehicle stuff requires it, but am not sure if liquid is okay or if film is necessary. I get varying info. Seems that majority is FOR film lamination and NOT liquid - any EXPERIENCE on this?
GraphiXtreme said:Based on my research, here's how I see it:
Printer: $12k - $20k
Cutter (if req'd): $3k - $5k
Laminator: $1k - $15k (depending on liquid or film and quality of unit)
Software: $0 - $3k
Photo Spectomoter: ~$3k (to create profiles)
Total: $16k - $46k - what is the reality here?
Colin said:Then you'll need to stock various (expensive) materials that you will be printing on.
Colin said:If you do some farming out now for digital printing, just think of all the headaches you are saving yourself - like when the machine runs out of ink part way through a big print, technical problems, etc etc.
Colin said:Know too that whatever you buy will be a dinasaur in short order as better technology will always be right around the corner.
Steve C. said:"I dont know why having a seprate cutter is better? I find it much more appealing to have an all in one machine. Just hit print and come back in 30 minutes and all your decals are done. You do not have the hassle of removing your prints and transfering them to another machine to cut."
Barry, I have been searching for the thread where Fred explains this, but can't find it. Maybe he will point us in the right direction. Basicly your cutter is tied up printing and you lose the use of your cutter untile it is finished if you do not have a seperate machine. Also for laminated jobs you must remove it form the printer anyway. I guess space is a consideration and it depends on each individuals needs. Help me Fred.
Preferred method of obtaining a printer is via Lease (Since its 100% tax deductible). My lease payment on my 30 inch versacamm is about $350 a month. This means that it only takes 1-2 small jobs a month to make my payment. Add a laminator and maybe it takes 3-4 jobs a month to cover the cost of equipment. I mean this is a no brainer to me.geb said:I want to address Colin's comments, because I also have thought about a smaller version, rolands desktop printer-plotter, mainly because of the price and not having a big market.
The future in this biz looks like you definately need to have a printer, and a larger one. I guess I'm 50-50 on a printer right now, mainly because of price and small market and not full time. I guess I need to try to get better at airbrush, hand painting, and dimensional signage to keep up.
I guess we are looking at it in 2 different ways...Colin said:I guess one thing I forgot to say was, if you're located in an area with a good population with a good economic pulse and not a sign shop on every street corner, then I probably wouldn't hesitate. I just have it quite tough in my area.
On the economics though: Let's say you spend $30,000 on a set-up. Well, you're not making a dime until the thing has finished paying for itself in profits, not just gross sales. Factor in all of the interest that you'll be paying as well.
This is akin to how so many sign shops don't charge enough for what they produce. They seem to charge as though they got all of their equipment for free, and just charge a low hourly rate plus materials. Granted, these are often the ones with design capabilities so poor that their pricing might even be viewed as too high for what the customer gets, but that's another topic.
(There have been some good articles in the past in Signcraft about factoring your overhead).
Colin, you have every right to be conserned about a purchase this large. Your spending a lot of your hard earned money. Im just trying to show you the other side...Colin said:You could be completly correct Barry, I am certainly no expert in economics. I guess I just tend to be very careful on such expenditures - (although I did see the value in purchasing better, expensive, industry-specific software, and a good plotter), but I think that given the way things are in my area, if I were to take the plunge, I'd find it to be an added overhead pressure every month (there are those slow months). But I could be quite wrong and am missing a green colored boat.
Hey GraphiXtreme, where are you?