Started a biz in the last year so its going a little slow. Looking to buy a plotter in the near future and I have some questions.
What are some of the best plotters to buy for cutting vinyl for decals and pin striping?
Could this same machine cut magnetic signs also?
What kind of maintenance can I expect for a plotter? Approximate yearly maintenance costs?
Kendra (aka Muddy)
Mixin' Mud & Ford Trucks!
Kendra, I suggest you pick up a copy of "Sign Business" magazine (www.signbusinessmag.com) where you'll see all the vinyl cutter brands advertised. You can buy a well-made Chinese cutter for half the price of the name brands, but availability of spares, knowledgeable service people and any sense of urgency of your maintenance problem should be weighed carefully. Roland is one of the best Japanese brands with a heavyweight service/spares/support presence in the USA.
Good brands have available a whole raft of different blade geometries, also they have models with the down-force power to cut everything up to mag-signs and glass-bead reflective signs. You can also find their little fellas that do standard vinyl only, well under $1000.
Little-known brands may be imported by short term entrepreneurs. Check the user forums at signage sites and read a few tear-stained emails before you invest, cuz vinyl plotters without electronic and mechanical spares and service, are only good for weighting down the body of their importer after you find him. Regards, Terrence