Tips For Cutting Vinyl Rolls
Vinyl is a flexible, plastic film-like material that can be cut into almost any design and placed on a variety of slick surfaces. It’s often used to create advertising materials like banners and signs.
Before you start cutting, make sure your machine is set to Vinyl and that the liner is facing up on the mat. Then load the mat and hit the flashing buttons to begin cutting.
Preparing the Vinyl
Before cutting, it’s important to prepare the vinyl. This includes placing it on the mat, lining up straight edges with the white printed grid, and smoothing out any bubbles with your hands or a brayer. It’s also a good idea to test a small section first to check your settings and ensure you have a “kiss cut,” which means that the blade only cuts through the vinyl and leaves the paper liner backing intact.
When you’re ready to start, place the vinyl on your blue or green mat with the paper liner side down, then press it firmly against the mat and smooth out any bubbles. Next, follow the prompts on the Make screen to set your base material. Choose Vinyl, or select Browse All Materials to access the full list of materials for your machine.
Once you’re satisfied that your base layer is properly prepared, use the scraper to apply the design onto your blank surface and burnish it. Then slowly peel back the transfer tape to reveal your finished product. Be sure to allow your project to cure for 24 hours before handling or using it, as this gives the adhesive a chance to fully adhere to the base and establish a permanent bond. If you’re not happy with your result, it’s easy to redo and try again.
Loading the Vinyl
Vinyl is a plastic, film-like material with an adhesive backing that’s similar to contact paper or peel and stick wallpaper. It comes in countless colors, sheens and textures and Cutting Vinyl Rolls in sizes ranging from 4.5” wide strips to 75’ rolls.
It’s typically applied to a smooth, non-porous surface for decoration or labeling. It works well on a variety of surfaces including plastic, glass, and metal, although you may not get optimum adhesion to fabric or wood. Vinyl can be used to create a wide range of projects, from monograms on water bottles to school logos on car windshields and names on pencil boxes. It can even be cut into shapes or words for customized gift wrapping and wall art.
Before you can begin cutting, you need to prepare your vinyl. First, make sure your CAMEO machine is set up properly for the size of your roll (see this tutorial for help with this). Place the vinyl on the mat, paper liner side down. Press it firmly onto the mat and smooth out any wrinkles or air bubbles using your hands or a scraper tool.
Return to Design Space and click on the Make screen. Select the base material – in this case, Vinyl – and choose the correct Smart Material setting for your vinyl type (it might be in the Favorites list or you can scroll down to find it). You can also click on the star next to it to add it to the list of materials you use most often.
Cutting the Vinyl
Vinyl is available in rolls sized to suit your craft Cutting Vinyl Rolls Manufacturer projects. Buying it in this form is often cheaper and easier to store. Whether you choose to trim the vinyl down or use it as is, make sure that there are no creases in the vinyl before you cut it. If there are creases, your Cameo may not cut the vinyl correctly.
Start by tracing your design on the vinyl using a pencil. This will ensure that your design is in the right place. Make any necessary adjustments at this point, as it will be easier to do than after the vinyl is already adhered to the project surface.
When you are satisfied with your design, you can proceed to cutting it. This will usually be done in a machine, but you can also use a blade or a wood burning tool for this task.
If you are working with a Cricut, the process is fairly straightforward. Open up your design in Design Space, and choose the correct material settings. This is typically done on the “Make” screen.
If you are using a standard die-cutting machine, it will likely be easier to select the correct settings from the “Set Materials” screen. This will depend on the type of machine you are using, as well as the size of the vinyl that you have chosen to work with.
Weeding the Vinyl
Weeding is the process of removing any vinyl that isn’t part of your final design. This is a crucial step that can make or break your project. It can be frustrating and time consuming, but it’s essential if you want to produce high quality projects.
To get the best results from your weeding, make sure that you’re working with a good sharp blade. If your blade is dull, it’s going to be harder to cut through the vinyl and remove the unwanted pieces. You should also use a light box to help you see the cuts clearly.
When weeding, take your time and be careful not to remove the parts of the design that you actually need. It’s easy to get in a hurry and end up accidentally removing parts of your design that shouldn’t be removed. To avoid this, make sure that you look at your reference design from time to time.
Another tip is to use a piercing tool instead of a classic weeding tool. This tool is great for getting into tight spaces and crevices and can save you a lot of frustration.
Finally, remember to mirror your designs when you’re working with iron-on vinyl. This will ensure that your design is straight when you apply it to your substrate. Otherwise, your project may end up looking crooked or even wavy.