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Seamless Finishing

 

One Print Provider's Story

 

By Amber E. Watson

 

Part 2 of 2

 

In part one of this series several routing and cutting software products were highlighted. Automating the finishing process with software to accompany and power the cutter provides many benefits to print service providers (PSPs). It ensures better levels of accuracy and quality of output as well as cost savings when it comes to waste due to manual mistakes.

 

Automation means a faster turnaround time, allowing business to grow. It also expands the capabilities for a PSP, including the ability to make more complex cuts such as three dimensional or contour, as well as the option to print on more difficult substrates.

 

Part two of this series takes an in-depth look at a print shop using MultiCam Inc.'s cutting and finishing software.

 

Cut Out for Success

Ron Freeman, owner, The Store Décor Co, Inc., based in Rowlett, TX, uses MultiCam’s Digital Express router/cutter to bring his design and print business to the next level and stay on top of current trends.

 

The Store Décor is home to 90 employees and offers clients a host of services, including design, installation, printing, fulfillment, as well as fabrication and custom sculpture for national retailers. The business began in 1992 and operates out of one location consisting of 12 buildings totaling 100,000 square feet. 

 

Freeman immediately noticed quality and cost benefits when he chose to utilize MultiCam’s Digital Express for routing/cutting. “MultiVision technology reduced our set up time and improved accuracy,” he said. “The Digital Express’ use of EnRoute software allowed us to seamlessly integrate our new and existing cutting path files generated in Adobe Illustrator. The software allows us the flexibility to dynamically schedule jobs and produce them on our choice of cutting equipment, providing quicker throughput and cost reduction, which ultimately leads to faster delivery. Cost reduction is also realized by the improved cycle time gained from controlling the cutting tools travel and order of the cut paths.”

 

With use of the Digital Express, The Store Décor instantly expanded the line of substrates they could print and fabricate, which helped them adjust to market trends. “This specific product expansion allowed us to successfully meet client demand for more economical sign and décor packages as necessitated by the struggling economy,” explains Freeman.

 

He also finds the software particularly useful with graphics generated in Adobe Illustrator. “We utilize the software for importing files, setting tool paths, and controlling the cutting sequence and speed of operation.”

 

Shawn Kirsch, application specialist, MultiCam, promotes the ease-of-use of its software product included with the Digital Express, “EZ Control allows printers to use their existing workforce,” he states. “The solution’s handheld interface eliminates the need for operators to be G-Code literate, and with a few minutes of training, any shop employee can operate a MultiCam machine.”

 

While Freeman did encounter a small learning curve with the software, he was impressed with MultiCam’s commitment to training. “The staff provides great training and support. After training the software is user friendly.” Skills that Freeman found to be particularly useful for operating the cutting software include general computer knowledge, a working idea of file structure, as well as a basic understanding of the Cartesian coordinate system. “The other learning curve comes in matching the proper tool to the substrate you are cutting,” he notes.

Freeman’s investment proves an integral part of the company’s everyday workload. On a daily basis, The Store Décor manufactures many types and styles of décor requiring interchangeable insert cards, signage, or magnets in a variety of size and thickness.

 

“The Digital Express allows us the ability to precisely and consistently cut those parts to an exact fit every time,” he says. “Another example would be our completion of a restaurant project that utilized the Digital Express to make precision contour cuts on hundreds of square feet of window vinyl, resulting in a realistic finish and enhanced outcome to the project.”

 

Conclusion

Many tools exist to aid PSPs in managing workflow, and routing and cutting software is important to consider for a seamless finishing job. As illustrated with The Store Décor, proper software helps business grow, saves money, and offers more advanced options to clients.

 

Click here to read part one of this exclusive online series, Finishing with Ease.


Click on the link above to get more information on the vendors mentioned in this article.

Oct2011, Digital Output  DORC1011

 
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