|Gerber M Series cutters, M-3000, M-1200|
Gerber Scientific Products acquired Data Technology, so now they can offer a flatbed cutter to compete with Zund cutters, Kongsberg cutters, and Mimaki CF2 and CF3 cutters. But recently Teckwin has entered this field, with a TeckRouter router and cutter.
Routers are another kind of technology
The Sabre 404 and Sabre 408 routers are another kind of flatbed technology. Our initial interest is not yet in routers, but rather initially in flatbed cutters that handle signage printed with UV-curable flatbed inkjet printers.
Our interest is in flatbed cutting plotters, not roll-fed vinyl cutters
FLAAR does not evaluate vinyl cutting plotters for several reasons: first, their technology is relatively simple and most people buy automatically either by brand name (Roland is a well known brand) or price (cheap Asian clones). The technology is so basic it does not require a research institute to prepare a glossary, training programs, etc.
Second, there is little new or unusual technology in cutting plotters; this is fairly basic equipment that has been around for years.
Third, too many other exciting kinds of digital technology exist that attract our attention, most notably UV-cured wide-format inkjet printers. The new Gerber Solara Ion is precisely one such new technology that we are curious about.
Competition from China
When you visit a Chinese sign trade show (such as Shanghai) you see entire vast halls filled with knock-off flatbed cutters, routers, and CO2 laser engravers. So far, the only Chinese cutter that we are even considering looking at is the TeckRouter router and cutter from Teckwin with MGE iCUT Vision software.
For further information on flatbed cutters for foam material and other rigid materials
If you have questions about flatbed cutters, you ought to contact individuals who have experience both with flatbed cutters AND with UV-curable flatbed printers. After all, it's foam boards, Coroplast, Sintra, Styrene, plexiglas and many other materials you will need to understand how to cut.
One place that where we know the people personally, is Global Imaging (toll free 800 787-9801). They know about the reality of UV-curable flatbed printers, and know XY cutters.
They also know image capture (medium format digital cameras, as an example). In other words, they are at a professional level. This is not a low-bid box pusher where they don't know the difference between UV and solvent ink.
Wide Format Printers