“The Garage” at work is like Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory for makers. There are lots of different tools that you can use for free (after you take a training course and usually provide your own materials.) I’ve been having lots of fun with the laser cutters, but recently I got trained on the vinyl cutter.
Our vinyl cutter is kind of like a huge (~36″ wide) ink jet printer that has a knife on the end instead of ink. You “print” on rolls of vinyl that are sticky on one side. When you cut the sheet, you’re just cutting through the vinyl but not the paper that covers the sticky side. You then apply another piece of sticky paper to the top of the vinyl. Peel off one side of your sandwhich and leave either the positive or negative space that you cut out. That made no sense because I don’t know what most of the things are called.
But blah blah blah, it’s fun! The computer side of things is roughly the same as the laser cutter. Files need to be in vector format and I can easily reuse most of the drawings that I did for the laser cutter. The first project was the sign for Tyla’s Mother’s Day gift. I headed back and did a couple more.
The first was vinyl for both sides of one of Ellijah’s toys. He now has a custom semi trailer!
I also printed a “No soliciting” sign for our front door. We get a LOT of door to door sales people and I have a standard policy of never buying or signing anything at the door. I used to have a dinky little piece of paper taped to the door but this looks a little nicer. It’s not quite as obvious, but some people ignored the old sign anyway.
I’m looking forward to spending some more time on the vinyl cutter. It opens up a whole new set of project possibilities.