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DrKerry

Someone on the board cuts out parts for his builds from sheet stock, please read!!

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There is someone on forum that cuts parts for his cars using a cutter of some sort. Cutting them form sheet stock. I’m looking to ask either him or anyone else that can do this a question for an up coming project I want to do. My only problem is the parts I will be cutting or making are about two feet in length as it’s a semi trailer! 

Mic anyone knows or can help let me know, as always thanks in advance for any and all help!!!

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I doubt the scrapbook cutter would work on anything but the thinnest plastic.  For cutting long pieces for a trailer, I'd get one of those cutters with the "snap-off" blades (where the blade can be broken off in sections to expose a fresh/sharp cutting area).  Some people call them carpet cutters, some call them box cutters, others refer to them as snap-off cutters.  Then, get a good metal straightedge and a couple of clamps.  For the long cuts, I'd clamp the work in place with the straightedge positioned so as to let you run the blade along it to make the cut.  Don't cut all the way through, only about halfway, but make sure you're doing so at the corners too.  The tendency is to put more pressure on the cut towards the middle and let up at the ends; try not to do that.  You're not putting a lot of pressure to make the cut anyway; you're just scribing the piece until you break through.  If you have to cut holes within a piece, I'd drill small holes at the corners and then use the straightedge/scribe method to connect the holes and knock out the piece.

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What I’m looking to do is build a more modern cattle hauler and it has a lot of air holes in the side. The reinforcements I can add with strip stock but to give an idea this is what I want to do!!

FBBAF6E2-DB7E-4517-BB03-F07588BFCC98.thumb.jpeg.3cd72ad558e2536fb410fd4b5c1a5b9a.jpeg

9D4C9671-AB67-4988-A2F5-197AF4DA887B.thumb.jpeg.8567f4676f42626602264d991ec86cff.jpeg

7E0910FD-AC64-40C0-9A45-3714443157EF.thumb.jpeg.247ef1e0884c4e55173b526d760d2385.jpeg

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Posted (edited)

WOW!

I've run some sheet through my plotter and it only scored it. That would take forever to break out all those small holes, plus I use my plotter for cutting vinyl. I wouldn't trust damaging my plotter to cut all those holes. Also being a friction feed, cutting through styrene creates a ton of drag, which can cause it not to track properly from beginning to end.

 

Sorry can't help you out Doc. I think your best bet might be making a jig, and using a drill press. You might want to check with Davevan, I think he used to cut sheet with a laser cutter. IIRC he said it needed to be cleaned up after the cuts, but how much, I don't know.

Edited by Psychographic

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Micro Mark and/or Harbor Freight punch sets.

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Posted (edited)

Look in the on the work bench forums for the wild custom Moebius Comet. This expert builder has Faber dozens of the frame and suspension parts from .020" sheet styrene using one of the cutters mentioned here. For thicker parts he laminates the sheets togeather. I saw this finished car yesterday at the Columbus Classic contest and it's a fantastic build. Check it out and be sure to read the whole story as he spells out exactly how he makes the parts.

Edited by misterNNL
misspelled word

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Posted (edited)

I just did a little digging on the forums and found the builder who's using the scrapbook cutter for parts. His name is Eric Ritz,his user name is Impalow and he uses Adobe Illustrator for plotting the things he is making and a Silhoutte cutter to make his parts. I hope this helps.

Edited by misterNNL
nuther mizpeled wurd

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You can definitely cut styrene with a craft style cutter. Most probably can cut all the way through .010, .015 possibly, .020 barely - mostly scoring and snapping. 

My Silhouette will cut .010 easy. 

Problem woth that many holes would be movement and maybe, exasperating the problem, blade dulling. Maybe break it into manageable sections and you could do it. 

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8 minutes ago, Erik Smith said:

You can definitely cut styrene with a craft style cutter. Most probably can cut all the way through .010, .015 possibly, .020 barely - mostly scoring and snapping. 

My Silhouette will cut .010 easy. 

Problem woth that many holes would be movement and maybe, exasperating the problem, blade dulling. Maybe break it into manageable sections and you could do it. 

I was going to suggest something similar, break the cut out design into sections that have same or similar pattern, the seams could be hidden behind the reinforcement strips.

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Posted (edited)

I have a vinyl cutter and I agree with all the comments above about tracking issues. This would be the wrong tool for this job.

The correct tool would be a laser cutter/engraver which would do the job in a few minutes.

Either way you will need an accurate scale drawing in vector format (eps, pdf etc, not jpg, bmp).

The common programs to use to do this would be Adobe Illustrator or CorelDRAW. I believe it is worth your time to learn the basics of one of these programs because this skill is useful for many types of projects. Look for a free download online along with YouTube tutorials, there will be other products as well. Have a look at my FaceBook page - David's Model Showcase - for some examples of what you can do with basic CorelDRAW skills.

To actually get the cuts done look for a friendly Trophy Shop but negotiate to supply your own preferred material. The stuff they use for trophies and nameplates is different and specific to that use.

Also, the cut might possibly result in a good side and a bad side. So, rather than draw just one side and cut it twice hoping to reverse one when you assemble it, copy and reverse (mirror) the drawing and cut a left and a right side.

I hope this was helpful.

Edited by Davoski
L&R

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I'd definitely try Micro Mark

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If the plotters would cut all the way through a thinner material, I would probably think in that direction and use two or more layers to laminate together.   The inner layers could have large holes to allow better chance at registration, due to the impossibility of friction feed plotter to cut the exact same thing twice - I've read the specs and tolerances and that is complete bs.   Been there, done that.  

To echo others, the artwork has to be a vector format - LINES not pixels, unless you the buileder are willing to pay for someone to digitize.  That can get expensive really quickly I hope.  I'm on the side of the artist on that.   

So much work on this it would have to be a costly labor of love.  It woould be quite an undertaking.

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Thanks for all the help and ideas!!! I’ll look into it more and see what happens!! Again I thank you all!!!

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, randyc said:

If the plotters would cut all the way through a thinner material, I would probably think in that direction and use two or more layers to laminate together.   The inner layers could have large holes to allow better chance at registration, due to the impossibility of friction feed plotter to cut the exact same thing twice - I've read the specs and tolerances and that is complete bs.   Been there, done that.  

To echo others, the artwork has to be a vector format - LINES not pixels, unless you the buileder are willing to pay for someone to digitize.  That can get expensive really quickly I hope.  I'm on the side of the artist on that.   

So much work on this it would have to be a costly labor of love.  It woould be quite an undertaking.

In my program If I copy the layout, it will lay a second path exactly on top of the first one. So when you send it to the plotter ( which I have done many times by mistake) it will cut exactly over the first cut. Due to the drag of running styrene through it, I would not trust it to track properly.

The idea of using larger holes on an inside layer makes a lot of sense.

Also the holes are so repetitive on this layout, It wouldn't be too hard to design, although it would be a lot of copy and pasting.

Edited by Psychographic

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Yeah I would have to agree with what everyone else has said.... personally i would go with a .010 skin, then add detail and structure to the inside and outside.  My cutter will pierce all the way through the .010, my only concern would be tracking over that length and the roundness of the holes...  my cutter seems to make everything oblong, so i have to chase holes with a drillbit.   since the are oval holes that will be tricky..   would be a very cool/rewarding project tho..

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26 minutes ago, Impalow said:

Yeah I would have to agree with what everyone else has said.... personally i would go with a .010 skin, then add detail and structure to the inside and outside.  My cutter will pierce all the way through the .010, my only concern would be tracking over that length and the roundness of the holes...  my cutter seems to make everything oblong, so i have to chase holes with a drillbit.   since the are oval holes that will be tricky..   would be a very cool/rewarding project tho..

Is the oblong shape of your holes consistent? If so maybe you could compensate for it when you make your file.

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Maybe thin metal sheets (like a foil cake pan), stamped with a hole-cutter made from crimped pipe, using a thick plastic hole template to aid layout?

 

 

 

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Why not just get two livestock trailers from new ray 1/32 scale trucks and kit bash them to 1/25 scale?

12073.jpg

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Posted (edited)

The holes in the trailer aren’t perfect circles. They are rectangular but with rounded off corners!! I wouldn’t mind using a thinner sheet of plastic and coming in from the back to reinforce it. I have to add the rib strips outside to and that would reinforce as well..

Edited by DrKerry

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On 3/19/2018 at 11:23 AM, Psychographic said:

In my program If I copy the layout, it will lay a second path exactly on top of the first one. So when you send it to the plotter ( which I have done many times by mistake) it will cut exactly over the first cut. Due to the drag of running styrene through it, I would not trust it to track properly.

The idea of using larger holes on an inside layer makes a lot of sense.

Also the holes are so repetitive on this layout, It wouldn't be too hard to design, although it would be a lot of copy and pasting.

Plotters I used to have would do multiple passes from the machine or the software.   Never exactly the same if the blade lifted between passes.  And the drage and tracking was never perfect on a second pass.  

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12 minutes ago, randyc said:

Plotters I used to have would do multiple passes from the machine or the software.   Never exactly the same if the blade lifted between passes.  And the drage and tracking was never perfect on a second pass. 

Thanks for the info Randy!!

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A laser cutter can create the livestock van shown. I have considered doing it myself. 

A few notes. 

Artwork - if you can't create the art yourself or know someone that could cost good money,

Cutting cost - laser cutting is about $1 a minute or more commercially. Just a estimate each side would cost about $60 plus materials.

It is a great project and perfect for a laser cutter. 

here are sone laser projects of mine.

2v8oLBdTxJcANd.jpg

2v22nT2jGxJcANd.jpg

2v23LGSv8xJcANd.jpg

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