Thick Vinyl

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Thick Vinyl

Post by bweisgall on Tue Sep 23, 2014 10:04 am

I am cutting thick vinyl rubber (1/4") to make stamps for the alphabet in the font Old Newspaper Type. New to drag knife so need some advice on parameters, namely swivel depth and # of passes. Using Aspire 4.0.

(1) Should the swivel depth always be just below the top of the material? E.g., if cut depth is 0.25" then swivel depth is 0.24"?

(2) It seems like 1/4" vinyl should be cut using at least 4 passes, if not more. Does that sound right?

(3) Also, does anyone have any experience with how closely different pieces can be nested with such a large material thickness? Seems like the force on the material would be large enough to nudge against the vacuum bed.

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Re: Thick Vinyl

Post by DonekTools on Tue Oct 07, 2014 9:27 am

The first thing you need to do is change your swivel depth from .24 to .01. You want to swivel the blade at the top of the material, not near the bottom of the cut.

2 to 4 passes is likely what you will need. I'm not familiar with how hard your material is, so can't comment. Once you get your corners taken care of, you can play with depth of cut until you find what works for that material.

I would suggest nesting with a 1/4in spacing to begin with. Your primary limitation will be overcuts at the corners. I have some parts that are nested and share a cut line.
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Re: Thick Vinyl

Post by bweisgall on Wed Oct 08, 2014 1:17 pm

Swivels at the top. Check.

Believe it or not, I've been doing 1 pass. The material is soft enough that the knife is able to make relatively tight turns. It tapers the edge, of course, but that's not a problem for me.

Here's a new question though: when it does a swivel action at a corner, sometimes it scores the material on the "inside" of the curve. For instance, when you cut a rectangle, the swivel actions score the material on the outside of the square. If what you want is the square, no problem. But if you are cutting that square OUT OF the piece you want, your piece now has a score line in it. Any way around this in the toolpathing in Aspire?

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Re: Thick Vinyl

Post by DonekTools on Wed Oct 08, 2014 2:18 pm

I'm not sure, but I think you are talking about the overcut at the corner. Because the blade is at an angle in the tool, you are going to see some overcut at the corners. The best way to eliminate this in a visible part is to cut from the back side. That way your overcuts are hidden.
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