Because techshop has menlo park this printer, the vinyl stock, and knowledgeable dream coaches this was easy to do. The Canon iPF (image prograph) oversized printer is a great machine. Unlike the smaller models with capstan drives it has a large drum. Once I got the job set up it was smooth sailing - but there were a few key points (in the setup).
for more information on the printer contact www.techshop.com
Step 1: Project overview
It does pay to plan this out - as there are a lot of changes in the process
> Decided to use 18" x 24" as well as 36" x 36"
> Used Corel Draw to create the artwork - with a custom size (as above)
> Exported to pdf
> Mounted signs to 5mm ply (underlayment was $12/sheet) using rubber cement
> sealed with acrylic spary
Step 2: Corel Tips - techshop
Add small registration lines if you are going to cut or work with the material later.
When working with fonts - think inches and not point size. Switch to artistic text so you can resize. I used layers so that the logo and background info that stayed constant wasn't touched as I generated all 12 pdf files.
Key here is to export to pdf and NOT to try to print from Corel.
Step 3: Printing two up
Note the teeny registration marks - makes it easier to cut.
Here - the font size could have been larger.
Step 4: Printing from acrobat - guideline for a test print
Make sure the power is on and you can see the printer on your network.
Look at the front panel on the printer - it has some valuable info including length of time to print (Mine was 8 min)
Pull down the canon manual.
Open the pdf in acrobat
From acrobat select print to be iPF 750(1)
From the printer setup box click properties; click main, set media type to 'matte' for vinyl
From the same printer setup box click advanced setting and set "between scans" to 7 seconds.
If the first run comes out unblurred you can back it down to 3 seconds which will bring your print
time down from 22 minutes to 8 minutes. With heavy bleeds and colors you will need to bump this up.
My signs were very sparse - I could have probably run at 2 seconds.
Click page setup and set paper size orientation, and paper source.
Do a print preview.
Click 'ok' to print.
Go over to the printer and you should see the 'roll feed' light on.
Step 5: Finished printing on vinyl
also - grommets can easily be attached so that they can be hung.
i took this a step further by attaching the sign to 5mm (underlayment) ply which is cheap and easy to work with.
Step 6: Mounting on ply with rubber cement
I created a 2" wide frame around the sign and did not glue the inner area. on the 3x3 signs i also put a 6" circular patch on the sign and the ply and then attached.
Use a board or piece of paper to keep the two halves separate. Start at the top and get that even, gently remove the board and push the air bubbles out and burnish. It's not a pretty site when you pull it off - but you can do d this if you want to reprep the surface.
rubber cement on the front of the vinyl cleans off - like a bunch of lil boogers.
Step 7: Applying rubber cement
Step 8: Cutting vinyl
Step 9: Cutting the ply
I then laid each sign on the plywood and marked the ply to fit. i used a framing square which is 1.5" on one side to align the cutting guide. use a sharp saw blade with at least 40 teeth. Guide the saw slowly. If you really are not wanting splinters on the edge put a sacrificial board under the piece of wood you care about.
I bought a two piece aluminum guide years ago and it really helps keep the cuts straight. I would never use a table saw for this type of cut.
Sand with 100 grit - using a palm sander