Using the Vinyl Cutter in the CBA Shop

Disclaimer: This is a write-up of John & Tom's demos. It's not comprehensive. Any errors are mine (Catherine D.) - drop me a line -

You can use the vinyl cutter for stickers, flexible circuits, stencils, or signs.

The vinyl cutter works with rollers that hold material and a head that moves with an X and Y and a small knife that actually cuts.

The Knife

You can take out the knife and adjust it. You want it to adjust it so that almost none of the knife is visible. If your material is thicker you might want to take the knife out more. You can also adjust it so that it just etches instead of cuts your material.

How to Hack it a little bit

You can put baby sharpies in the machine instead of the knife and it will draw instead of cut.

Put the material in the machine

Make sure the lever in the back is up so that you can put the material in the machine. In order for the machine to measure the material properly you need to make sure the machine's rollers are positioned under the greyish spots.

Secure the material

Push down the lever on the back of the machine that holds the material down.

Put the knife back in the machine

If you had taken it out

Turn on the vinyl cutter machine

Press the down arrow on the machine to select whether you are using a 'piece' of material or a 'roll' of material.

Machine should move and measure your material properly.

Prepare file

Your image can be SVG or PNG in B&W. Your tool diameter will always be offset into the black.


Boot into Linux. Username: fab Password: fab

Launch the fab modules

format: PNG

process: Roland VinylCutter

Load PNG

Find your file and load it.

Resize PNG

Make sure your PNG size matches your material size as measured by the machine. If not, press resize PNG and resize it.

Press Make Path

The software should show you how it will cut.

Adjust settings

For example --  vinyl: Force: 160 g/f, Speed: 20cm/sec

Press Make .camm

Press send it

Machine should cut properly

Remove material from machine and "weed" it with tweezers

Press Transfer Tape on top of decal

This will remove it and you can stick it on a new surface and remove transfer tape. Surfaces like glass or metal work great. Painted walls work less well.



        Set up your material (roll/piece) and measure it as before.

        Boot into Windows. Username: fab Password: fab

Open CorelDraw (but you can use other software)

Make document match material

Set Document units to MM and put in the measurements from the machine for width and height of document.

Make sure your shapes have a hairline outline

Select the shape. In bottom right hand corner it will tell you about the fill and stroke of the shape.

Print File

File >> Print. Check "reposition file" and position to bottom left corner so you know where it will print. In "Properties" you can adjust the cutting speed.

Adjust Force manually

On the machine press the "Force" button if you want to change force settings.