Week 5 - TUTORIAL: Troubleshooting for Silhouette Cameo Print&Cut

Discussion in 'Summer School 2022' started by esahin, Aug 1, 2022.

  1. esahin

    esahin Elif Sahin

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    When your cutting machine works fine, it’s a blessing. When it’s not tho, you might want to pull out your hair! Before that happens, let’s see a few reasons why your print&cut machine doesn’t work the way it should and explore how you can fix it.

    I broke down the problems into two categories and will go into detail about each in sub-sections. Let's get started!

    1. Registration problems
    a. Lighting is insufficient
    If you’re using the auto registration feature at a time that your room doesn’t get enough light, you’ll experience this problem. You could turn on the manual registration feature and also put a light near the blade. I usually turn on the flash from my phone and point it towards the blade. Keep the light until registration is complete on all three corners.
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    b.What’s printed doesn’t match the machine settings and media size
    It happens to the best of us. Sometimes I choose matless cutting but I print the registration marks for mat cutting. Or I choose a wrong paper type. Then your machine looks at the wrong locations to find the registration marks. Check your machine, cutting mat, and media sizes from “Page Setup” panel to make sure you’re cutting for the right feature of your machine.
    2a.jpg

    c.Registration mark is printed separately from the designs

    Sometimes I print the design and realize that I didn’t turn on the registration marks for the sheet. If you feed the same exact paper to your printer and just print the registration marks, sometimes the printer prints the marks just slightly off which. Then your machine might have problems cutting at the exact location of the designs. Always print the marks and the designs at once.

    d.You’re using a custom position for the registration marks

    You’re feeding the material right to the machine, and it reads the registration marks okay, you didn't print the registration marks separately from the design but it still cuts at the wrong places. This is a nightmare problem until you find out the solution! The problem is because of trying to maximize the cutting area on the material.


    The software will show you the cutting area in red lines and it will allow you to adjust this area in “Page Setup” panel. Although some users are able to use this feature without an issue, it creates problems for others. Leave this setting at default and see if your print&cut aligns better.

    First enable the “Show Cut Border” setting from the bottom of the page setup panel.
    2b.jpg
    Then go to “Registration Marks” setting by clicking on the icon that shows registrations marks. Make sure registration marks are turned on. Click on the “Restore Defaults” button.
    2c.jpg

    2. Feeding & material problems
    Sometimes you might experience that your paper is stuck in the cutting machine or all of a sudden it starts sliding and turning under the cutting blade when indeed it should stay put. This could be due to several reasons.

    a. Material is fed wrongly
    There are alignment marks on your machine. For Silhouette Cameo you’ll see a gray line at the left side of the loading area. This is where your cutting mat should be aligned to. Don’t put the mat on top of it. It should be just next to it without a gap in between.
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    When cutting with the mat, make sure the roller guide is locked at the far right notch.
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    When you load the mat, your cutting mat should be flushed against the roller guide at the far right and go under it. While holding your mat in this position, feed it in.
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    Check if the roller bar is locked (the handle should be looking up).
    6.jpg

    If you’re cutting without the mat, adjust the roller bar guide to the width of your material but the guide should be locked at a notch. Again align the material with the gray line at the far left and feed the material in.
    7.jpg

    b. You’re using the wrong blade setting
    The higher the blade and force setting, the more secure your material should be on the mat. When you unnecessarily use high blade settings with a full speed, blade puts a lot of pressure on to the material that the guides can no longer hold the material in place. Lower the blade setting as well as the speed of the machine to safely cut the material. Cut in several passes if the material isn't cut all the way through.
    8.jpg

    c. You’re experimenting with a material that your machine doesn’t support
    Know what your machine and blade can cut through. Default auto blade that comes with the Silhouette Cameo can cut up to 1mm thickness but not all 1mm materials are suitable. Use the correct blade for the correct material. Check your user manual for the items that your machine can cut. If you’re cutting a thick paper, for example 300gsm paper, rather than cutting it at one go at a high blade setting, use lower settings, go slow and cut several times because the blade might get stuck in thick and stiff materials when you use high blade settings at once.

    d. If you’re using a mat, your mat might have lost it’s stickiness
    Make sure your paper/material is holding on to the mat. I use a plastic card as a scraper and go over the paper to make sure it is not moving freely. If this is not enough, you can tape along the edges of your paper/material but make sure tape doesn’t interfere with the cutting area. As a last resort, you need to replace your mat with a new one.
    [​IMG]

    e. Paper/material starts rotating and sliding when cutting without a mat
    Cutting without mat is tricky on its own. The new Silhouette Cameo can cut sticker paper as well as regular cardstock without a mat but you should be careful when using this feature.

    In addition to checking the guides and if the material is fed correctly to the machine as described above, the best thing you should do is to make sure the machine has enough space in the back and in the front to freely send the material back and forth. If the material hits something while cutting, it can easily shift and rotate. Do not interfere with the material when machine is cutting.

    Also, make sure the material is flat and doesn’t bend on the edges. If it does bend or curl, it might get stuck in the gaps of the cutting board while the machine tries to continue cutting. Flatten your material before feeding it to the machine.

    And lastly, when cutting without a mat, do not place designs at the bottom part. There should be enough room at the bottom of the material so that when the machine cuts what's at the bottom, there is still enough paper sticking out under the guides to safely hold the material in place.

    I hope you've found some answers here if you're having problem with Print&Cut feature of Silhouette machine! Don't forget that everyone who starts using the Silhouette Cameo experience problems and get frustrated at first. It takes some time and a few experiments to get used to it. Don't fret and have fun! :glomp
     
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  2. Karen

    Karen Wiggle it, just a little bit!

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    Wow! This is such a fabulous resource! I’ve learned a ton of these things the hard way myself. Lol. Definitely book marking this thread! :agree
     
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  3. Cath_

    Cath_ In my polka dot dress and apron

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    I dont have one of those, but am going to save above tut for the future.
     
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  4. umyesh

    umyesh President of the Hangry Ladies Supper Club

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    Thank you Elif! I have an adhesive spray I like to use if my materials slide off my mats. I’ve never successfully printed and cut but hopefully with this tutorial I’ll be able to!
     
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  5. esahin

    esahin Elif Sahin

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    I've never tried using a spray! Does it damage the mat after removing the material?
     
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  6. umyesh

    umyesh President of the Hangry Ladies Supper Club

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    I don't think it damages the mat. My sister-in-law gave me her old machine and mats and recommended the spray so that's why I use it. I'll dig it out later and post what kind it is in case you're interested.
     
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  7. umyesh

    umyesh President of the Hangry Ladies Supper Club

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    The spray I use is Krylon Easy-Tack Repositionable Adhesive 7020. The spray can says "repositionable bond for lightweight materials; acid-free; long-lasting tack; non-wrinkling, low odor." Hope this helps!
     
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  8. esahin

    esahin Elif Sahin

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    Thank you so much Monica! :beat
     
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  9. mmbstaley

    mmbstaley Well-Known Member

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    Yep, have experienced lots of these issues and they are frustrating to say the least. Thank you for all of the tips!
     
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