Tools - Silhouette Curio
This article was published Jun 08, 2017.
The name of my machine is Silhouette Curio. A cutter which can do several things, not only cut but also draw, stipple, emboss and a few more. It has two heads so two things can be done at the same time without changing heads (tools like knife etc). It is said to handle several materials but I only used hard card and styrene so far.
Often asked question is how deep it can cut. With hardcard about 1mm. With styrene about 0.25mm. But this is not so important since you instead "snap" of the pieces while carefully bending the sheet. With snapping you cut about 1.5mm thick as most. Second, with most projects you glue together several layers to get the effect of 3D for window sills, borders and such.
The machine comes complete with software and only works with windows 7 and later, not XP.
The software is very easy to work with not like cad. You only need a bit practice playing with the tools available like drawing a box, circle ellipse straight line etc.
When a drawing is made you save it as a file and can be used again and again or used as part of a new drawing.
A couple of lines etc can be "joined" and worked with as a new object. Easily re scaled for example, from HO to 1/48 or any other scale you desire, by just drag in one of the corners of your object.
By colour marking objects you can select a few to be cut but not all. This is handy when you need to cut out something really complex (in number of lines, not size) which sometimes is not possible in one go. You can also let the cutter to cut a selected nbr of objects several times, to get there cuts deeper than the rest.
You will use up a lot sheets for nothing in the beginning but as you learn to use it better, almost never.
Adjusting depth, how deep it should cut is a bit tricky to but again a learning thing.
If you are like me, only will use the cutting function, the Curio is overkill, the cheaper ones from Silhouette works as fine and cuts same depth. The "table" on my Curio is better than all the rest (there the sheet is placed while cutting), but I wonder if it is worth the extra cost.
There is cutters which must always reach the Internet and all files are also stored there. Don´t go for one of these. You loose control of your drawings and if the site goes down or you can´t reach Internet there you are (or if you have slow speed like from a mobile phone or Wi-Fi, your cutter will not work...