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Which cutting plotter would you buy?

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Joe Killeen

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Post Mon Nov 06, 2017 4:19 pm

Which cutting plotter would you buy?

Hi All
Looking at upgrading our plotter and have 3 options.
1 Graphtec FC8600 130 ( I seen one on the board for sale but collecting from Ireland makes it too pricey )
2 Summa D14R
3 Mimaki CG130FX iii

Hoping to get some user feed back on all models to help make my mind up.
All are around the same price €4k - 4.5k

Joe
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Martyn Heath

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Post Mon Nov 06, 2017 4:54 pm

Re: Which plotter would you buy

i can only comment on my plotter - Graphtec ce6000. Great machine, hasnt made one mistake in 3 years.
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David Hammond

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Post Mon Nov 06, 2017 4:55 pm

Re: Which plotter would you buy

We've run Graphtec's and when it came to upgrading our FC8000 we went for the FC8600.
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Hugh Potter

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Post Mon Nov 06, 2017 4:56 pm

Re: Which plotter would you buy

Could the graphtec not be palletised and delivered that way? I sent a 1200 plotter that way once before - was a cheapo machine I picked up when clearing out a retiring sign maker, sold it to a guy via ebay who was in NI, If I recall it cost around £70 to send with TNT (I think).

The summa's are also a very good machine, I use the 140R here - though sometimes wish I'd bought the 160!

Can't comment on mimaki as never owned one.
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David Hammond

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Post Mon Nov 06, 2017 5:03 pm

Re: Which plotter would you buy

We went for the 160, worth that little bit extra as we can comfortably cut wrap film, and 1600 digital vinyl. :thumbsup:
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Simon Worrall

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Post Mon Nov 06, 2017 5:05 pm

Re: Which plotter would you buy

Joe...perhaps we can come to some agreement re shipping my plotter to you? Parcel monkey have quoted 71 pounds to the republic.
It is a truly outstanding plotter. :)

Please email me: noah@noahsart.design to discuss.


Simon.
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Joe Killeen

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Post Mon Nov 06, 2017 7:13 pm

Re: Which plotter would you buy

Hi Simon
I will be in touch tomorrow.
Thanks for all the replies, Graphtec wins.

Joe
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Stafford Cox

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Post Mon Nov 06, 2017 10:30 pm

Re: Which plotter would you buy

Plotters are all very similar, it's the software that really makes them sing. I'm going to be biased toward Graphtec FC and Cutting Master of course but the Mimaki CG-FX and Finecut are excellent!! I'd be very hard pushed to choose between the two. The Summa and SCC are still good but would be 3rd place in my opinion.
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Robert Lambie

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Post Mon Nov 06, 2017 11:06 pm

Re: Which plotter would you buy

Roland, Graphtec or Summa.

You cannot go wrong with a Roland or Graphtec cutter.
I have been using both brands on various cutters over the past 28 years.
Coupled by any cutter, i would never ever see past using Signlab for vinyl cutting, it is by far the best.

About a year ago, I introduced a top of range Summa cutter purely for "roll-to-roll contour cutting of prints" and purchased it from Perfect Colours. Great machine but in my opinion it was faulty and just could not do what i required it for. I returned it and got 100% refund. This fault really let me down on what i thought otherwise a great machine and very user friendly. I say faulty, because i believe i was either sold a faulty machine or miss-sold on its ability to do the job as promised. I hope i am correct, but my view on Summa products on the whole is excellent!

I really like the new Roland cutters. I had a demo at Sign & Digital this year. has a funky new style that stands out from all the others on the market.
Attachments
Roland-Vinyl-Cutter.JPG
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Leigh Howden

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Post Tue Nov 07, 2017 12:01 pm

Re: Which plotter would you buy

I got a 160fxll

Very good machine
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Stephen Morriss

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Post Tue Nov 07, 2017 12:22 pm

Re: Which plotter would you buy

I've had a Summa and now have a Roland, both are very good but I think the Summa has the edge in user friendliness even though it's 16 years old. The Roland works better in my workflow though as I also have a Roland printer so Versaworks can cut direct to the Roland cutter with no messing around.
As others have said, get the widest you can afford and fit in your office, 1300mm is a good size, while most work will fit in the normal 610 vinyl rolls it's very handy to be able to get 1220 rolls for some jobs, then if you get a printer you can also cut prints.

Steve
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Alex Crosbie

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Post Tue Nov 07, 2017 7:02 pm

Re: Which plotter would you buy

Roland told me my 7 year old summa cutter was better than their new cutter and be better off keeping the summa than their new machine!

Having had a demo on the roland cutter I’d say they have a fair distance to catch up to Summa.

I’d go summa first choice then graphtec then roland.
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Steff Davison

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Post Tue Nov 07, 2017 10:15 pm

Re: Which plotter would you buy

+1 for Summa

Exceptional after sales care, they didnt stop until they had resolved an issue I had with one of my machines (under warranty..so no cost to me) that to me is the real test, how do they act when things arent going their way,

Ive recently bought my 6th Summa,, wont consider anything else.
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Robert Lambie

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Post Wed Nov 08, 2017 9:41 am

Re: Which plotter would you buy

Steff Davison wrote:that to me is the real test, how do they act when things arent going their way


That's really down to who you actually buy your cutter from though. Not Summa themselves.
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Steff Davison

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Post Wed Nov 08, 2017 12:55 pm

Re: Which plotter would you buy

Robert Lambie wrote:
Steff Davison wrote:that to me is the real test, how do they act when things arent going their way


That's really down to who you actually buy your cutter from though. Not Summa themselves.


Well it wasnt a Spandex supplied machine, so as far as I am concerned its through Summa's official distribution network, Art Systems were extremely good. I didnt buy the machine from Art Systems though, but ultimately Art Systems provide the Summa 3 year warranty on the machines in the UK.

Not sure what warranty Spandex provide, I dont deal with them.
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Robert Lambie

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Post Wed Nov 08, 2017 2:55 pm

Re: Which plotter would you buy

Hi Steff

Like most printers and cutters, there are multiple suppliers of Summa in the UK.
Great machines, but depends on who you buy from that determines how after sales etc is handled.

e.g.
I bought an Audi from London Audi, couple of years later I bought one from Stafford Audi.
Due to how the whole purchase and after-sales was handled, i will never buy from Stafford Audi again, even though they were the most competitive priced. But obviously this has zero to do with the car and doesn't change my opinion on the car itself.
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David Stevenson

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Post Wed Nov 08, 2017 3:17 pm

Re: Which plotter would you buy

We have a Roland GR-640 cutter for a few months now which after a lot of hassle is now working perfect, well almost perfect. It has 2 very annoying issues which I don't believe can be resolved. Firstly there is a narrow channel at the front of the machine which the edge of your material constantly gets stuck in causing motor errors. Secondly and without a doubt the most annoying is having to change the blade position in the holder when you want to cut and perf. The machine cuts all the stickers before returning to origin to change the blade position. It then perfs everything on that sheet before asking again for the blade to be moved to cut the next sheet. The reason to move the blade is that went perforating the blade runs into a channel rather than on a cutting strip to make it last longer. Personally I'd rather it just stayed in the same place and done the complete job without needing a baby sitter :-(

On a brighter note is super accurate when cutting, that is after you've finished changing blade positions!
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Kevin Mahoney

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Post Wed Nov 08, 2017 7:01 pm

Re: Which plotter would you buy

Absolutely love my Summa D610, second one I’ve had since a Roland went bang. I would highly recommend. The problem I have is that when I bought the original one, I was purely Mac based so had a Mac based cutting program that came at the same time (free sign). It was OS9 which gives an idea how long ago it was. My Mac was the last model apple made with a duel operating system, X had only just arrived. It was a sad day when the almost 20 year old Mac died a couple of weeks ago, tech guy says it will be a very expensive repair & may not be possible without sourcing an identical donor machine. Not sure what to do now, I don’t think there’s anything available for new macs & I might be trying to learn a totally new cut program.
On another note, I’m surprised you had a bad time with Stafford Audi Rob. I was driving through Stafford last year & needed a new phone charger for the car so ducked off the motorway to find one. The wife saw & instantly wanted a car off their forecourt. I was thirty grand lighter but they were by far the best Audi dealer I’ve ever dealt with. Our Worcester one thinks Quattro just means multiply all prices by four.
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Steff Davison

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Post Wed Nov 08, 2017 9:40 pm

Re: Which plotter would you buy

Robert Lambie wrote:Hi Steff

Like most printers and cutters, there are multiple suppliers of Summa in the UK.
Great machines, but depends on who you buy from that determines how after sales etc is handled.

e.g.
I bought an Audi from London Audi, couple of years later I bought one from Stafford Audi.
Due to how the whole purchase and after-sales was handled, i will never buy from Stafford Audi again, even though they were the most competitive priced. But obviously this has zero to do with the car and doesn't change my opinion on the car itself.


Well the way I see it is that if I am buying through an authorised Summa source, then Summa are responsible for my warranty, I want an authorised Summa expert ( which is what I ultimately got ) not someone who knows there way around a plotter. It doesnt matter who the authorised dealer is who I bought it from ( Spandex excluded) I pay a premium for the brand for a reason. As a footnote when my machine started with its issues I contact my supplying dealer to tell them I had a problem and that I was contacting Art Systems to get it rectified, they were happy for me to do this. Ultimately Art Systems are the competent authority for Summa machines in this country.
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Robert Lambie

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Post Wed Nov 08, 2017 10:02 pm

Re: Which plotter would you buy

Where did you buy your Summa machine from Steff?

I did not buy my Summa from Spandex, I bought mine from Perfect Colours, an authorised Summa distributor.
The machine could not do what it was supposed to be able to do. I had both Perfect Colours and Art Systems try and resolve the issue, but in the end it was returned and 100% refund given.

Art Systems 10/10 as always! we deal with them with our HP machines also.
Perfect Colours on the other hand will never see me buy another machine from them. Which is my point.
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Steff Davison

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Post Wed Nov 08, 2017 10:50 pm

Re: Which cutting plotter would you buy?

Robert you seem to have answered your own question. Art Systems sorted out your problem and I presume, authorised your return and refund. Whether you bought from Perfect Colours or another Art Systems supplied dealer is irrelevant the end result ( provided you had the good sense to talk to Art Systems) would have been the same.

If I had bought from a non authorised "dealer" then the outcome may have been totally different because I wouldnt have access to Art Systems and their technical support department.
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Robert Lambie

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Post Wed Nov 08, 2017 11:36 pm

Re: Which cutting plotter would you buy?

.

Where did you buy your Summa machine from Steff?

Steff Davison wrote:Robert you seem to have answered your own question. Art Systems sorted out your problem and I presume, authorised your return and refund.


No, I haven't answered my own question at all.
It was resolved "directly between myself and Perfect Colours", long after Art Systems had been involved and had no part in the end event.
As i said from my initial post in this thread, the machine was either faulty or i was miss-sold the machine on its capability.

Anyway, I have made my point. So I will leave it at that.
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Pane Talev

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Post Sat Mar 03, 2018 9:40 pm

Which cutting plotter would you buy?

Just unpacked my 4th Summa machine.
Happy with Summa.
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Paul.Carter

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Post Sun Mar 04, 2018 10:13 pm

Re: Which cutting plotter would you buy?

I have only had Gerbers and a summa.

If I was buying new it would be a summa (but not from spandex)
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Hugh Potter

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Post Tue Mar 06, 2018 1:17 pm

Re: Which cutting plotter would you buy?

Summa, bought my D140r from Perfect colours after a recommendation from a colleague about 18months back, can't fault them :-)

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