On Monday, I received delivery of a Brother Scan n Cut SDX1200 machine that I'd ordered from Craftelier the previous week. Yesterday, I bit the bullet and decided to get to know my new electronic die cutting machine. It's a huge learning curve!
I don't know about you, but when it comes to things like technology or anything new to me really, I start off with a huge feeling of trepidation. Worrying that I don't know what I'm doing, fretting that I'll break the machine.
I have realised I hate not knowing what I am doing. Sadly, there is only a small six page booklet on how to work the machine, they call it a "Quick Reference Guide". I like to have something the size of a telephone directory that I can refer to! There is a booklet on-line that you can look at, but it just isn't the same as the actual proper booklet. I don't seem to absorb instructions in that format as well as I do when it is on paper. I also like to write notes in the booklets and highlight areas too. So I think I am going to have to buy more ink for the printer and print the whole book out, it will be less stressful in the end.
The unpacking of the machine was fine, registering the machine was ok eventually, as was the first project they suggest you make, a little gift box. There were picture instructions on how to do it, which is the style that I like to work from. I think I must be reverting to being a child preferring this format 😀
The next thing I did, I was on my own, having to find my way around the machine. I stamped three flowers then needed to sort out how to cut them. I used a thin card and I managed to get the three flowers cut perfectly. This is going to be a huge time saver for me, as I often end up fussy cutting images for my crafting projects and I use masks too, so this will be a quick way for me to create them.
I then decided I would stamp a couple of smaller images to see how it coped. As you can see the cutting was perfect. So this function is definitely something I will be using frequently.
One of the other reasons I purchased this machine, was that I would be able to make word stencils for the boards that Hubby's metal work projects are mounted on. But to do this I would need to get to grips with software on the computer called "Canvas Workspace". When I went on the Canvas site I came out in a cold sweat so decided to stop for dinner!
I couldn't put it off any longer and returned to my desk where the Scan n Cut machine was positioned next to my computer screen. It was time to let battle commence!
I had no idea what I was doing, so watched a couple of Youtubes first. Apparently when you want "joined up writing" type words, i.e. letters that touch each other to create a word in one image, instead of the indivdual letters. The terminology is "Welded Words".
I thought I had done it, transferred the image over to the new machine, but no where on the Youtubes I had watched, mentioned how you actually print off a saved image you've created. So I fannied around trying to do it. Somehow, and I have absolutely no idea how I did it. I managed to cut the word. I peeled the paper away from the cutting mat, gently lifting off the cut image, only to find that I actually had forgotten to press the "weld" button, so I had three individual letters (see photo above).
I was starting to think I was going to have a "love/hate" relationship with this machine!
Not to be deterred, I decided to have another go, this time using Hubby's name "Chris". The sorting out of the canvas section was a breeze this time, moving it from the computer on to the cutting machine less so. Then I couldn't find a way to cut the thing. I don't know how many times I jabbed the screen with the stylus, sometimes going in and out of the same section several times, until eventually there was a urika moment and it offered me a "cut" option and the machine whirred into cutting action, this time cutting the word with the letters all stuck together!
I realised I again had no idea how I got it to print what I had transferred, but as it was coming up to tea time and I had a headache from all the concentrating, I decided to call it a day and take a break from learning. I had spent a full day of faffing with the machine.
I know the machine has huge capabilities to create stunning pieces, but it is my learning ability that will be the restriction, so for the nextcouple of days I will attempt to be more confident in using it. Wish me luck! Sam x