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Vacuum Table Tips

Whether buying or building your own table, below are some tips and ideas for ensuring the best set up.

Phillocraft Quick Assembly Tips:

  • Layout all the parts before assembling.
  • Position your table before assembly, it is difficult to move after-the-fact.
  • Use a saw horse to hold up unsupported table braces while you attach the legs.
  • Assemble all table braces before attaching supports. Finger tighten. Insert table tops and square frame so the edge of all tops are flush along both sides. Now tighten.
  • Level table before installing track. Find the high point and raise the rest of the table to match.

Build-Your-Own Vacuum Table Build Tips:

  • Your table needs to be very level
  • Make your table strong enough to walk on.
  • Your table needs to be very level
  • If you don’t have time to do it right the first time, when will you find time to do it again the second…
  • Consider building a lofted table to maximize floor space.

Cutting Surface Tips:

  • Use mesh or window screen between your cutting surface and vacuum table to ensure better suction.
  • You can flip the polypropylene and polyethylene sheets as they get worn to double usable life.
  • Use harder cutting surface for softer materials.
  • If you get “hangers” try drilling smaller holes.
  • Use as little cutting pressure as possible to maximize surface life.

Vacuum Blower Tips:

  • You cannot have too much vacuum.
  • Insulate Vacuum blowers to reduce noise.
  • Seal all joints with glue or plastic wrap to improve vacuum.
  • Close off unused table sections during cutting to improve vacuum (with blast gates or scrap material).
  • A good seal requires very little vacuum.
  • Try vacuum bagging with thin plastic sheet.

Cutting Tips:

  • Use a fresh blade when cutting close to the edge of the fabric.
  • Cut a test box on new material to determine the minimum pressure required to cut. This will extend blade life and table cutting surface life.
  • Use the odometer on the plotmaster home screen to track blade life. This will let you know if you need a new blade, before you start a big job.
  • N.B. 15% restocking on returned parts

Marking Tips:

  • Use Dark Pens on Light fabric and Light pens, silver, on Dark Fabric
  • UV pens are good for marking “hidden” serial numbers
  • Use as little pressure as possible – about 12-15psi to keep from breaking pens, dulling points, or tearing light material.
  • ALWAYS cap sharpies when done plotting.
  • N.B. 15% restocking on returned parts

Plotmaster Software Suite Tips:

  • Using a dedicated Plotter Computer can speed up plot/cut times.
  • Optimize parts before plotting/cutting to get the most efficient plot path.
  • Experiment with different speed settings for different materials
  • Save jobs in folders by their order # — this makes recuts, and recovers quick and easy to find.
  • When you find your optimal settings – take a screen shot. This is ideal in a multiple user or material setting.
  • Use the odometer’s in PMXP to track blade life – this lets you know when to use a fresh blade, before you start a big job.
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