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Thread: Computerized Matte Board Cutters

  1. #21

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    Re: Computerized Matte Board Cutters

    I bought a used Esterly Speed Mat cutter because I just became totally frustrated with the inaccuracy of the Logan type systems for cutting large mats. I do all my own mat cutting and cutting anything larger than a 16x20 mat for me was just an exercise in frustration. I do a lot of large mats. Below 16x20, the Logan type machines were ok (marginally).

    The Esterly Speed Mat holds up to 60x40 mat board. It mounts on a wall. It's a purely mechanical unit, but it's the closest thing to a production machine short of a computerized machine. It locks the board down absolutely securely and the cutter carriage is then just moved through four cuts as fast as you can say it with incredible accuracy. Once you see one in action, you'll never want to use any other kind of manual system. Here's a link to a photographer who shows his whole process. He demonstrates the Esterly at about 4:30 into the video. Don't blink. If you've never seen one before, you'll be amazed how fast it is.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3n2o...ertRodriguezJr

    The Speed Mat company also makes a computerized machine. I believe their machine is at the very low price range of such machines.

    (I have no connection to them or to the photographer in the video)

    I investigated a number of the high end machines - Valiani, Zund, Kongsberg. They are all fantastic machines. If anyone has seen poor cuts from such a machine, something was very wrong with the setup or the operator allowed the blade to become dull. They are capable of precision beyond which anyone needs in mat cutting. They are used in high-end production cutting of all kinds, way beyond mat cutting. There are many fascinating youtube videos showing these beasts. The videos are a real eye-opener into that industry. I highly recommend doing a search on youtube.

    They are drop-dead beautiful pieces of equipment and are intended for very high-volume production. Only the largest of frame shops can reasonably afford such things.

    Rich

  2. #22
    bob carnie's Avatar
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    Re: Computerized Matte Board Cutters

    Quote Originally Posted by Rich14 View Post
    I bought a used Esterly Speed Mat cutter because I just became totally frustrated with the inaccuracy of the Logan type systems for cutting large mats. I do all my own mat cutting and cutting anything larger than a 16x20 mat for me was just an exercise in frustration. I do a lot of large mats. Below 16x20, the Logan type machines were ok (marginally).

    The Esterly Speed Mat holds up to 60x40 mat board. It mounts on a wall. It's a purely mechanical unit, but it's the closest thing to a production machine short of a computerized machine. It locks the board down absolutely securely and the cutter carriage is then just moved through four cuts as fast as you can say it with incredible accuracy. Once you see one in action, you'll never want to use any other kind of manual system. Here's a link to a photographer who shows his whole process. He demonstrates the Esterly at about 4:30 into the video. Don't blink. If you've never seen one before, you'll be amazed how fast it is.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3n2o...ertRodriguezJr

    The Speed Mat company also makes a computerized machine. I believe their machine is at the very low price range of such machines.

    (I have no connection to them or to the photographer in the video)

    I investigated a number of the high end machines - Valiani, Zund, Kongsberg. They are all fantastic machines. If anyone has seen poor cuts from such a machine, something was very wrong with the setup or the operator allowed the blade to become dull. They are capable of precision beyond which anyone needs in mat cutting. They are used in high-end production cutting of all kinds, way beyond mat cutting. There are many fascinating youtube videos showing these beasts. The videos are a real eye-opener into that industry. I highly recommend doing a search on youtube.

    They are drop-dead beautiful pieces of equipment and are intended for very high-volume production. Only the largest of frame shops can reasonably afford such things.

    Rich
    Sandy this is the system I am considering...

    Rich - how long have you had this machine? and does it live up to the video as being very easy to use?
    For some reason I thought the Easterly system had a compressor attached to hold the matt into place and to drive the knife into the board??

  3. #23

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    Re: Computerized Matte Board Cutters

    Bob,

    I've had mine for 8 months. Operating it is exactly as easy as shown in the video. It's the only sane way to manually cut mat board. Yes, there is a model with a pneumatic unit. Mine is strictly mechanical. Like the video.

    I bought mine used from Skyline for about $850. I live in Oceanside, CA. The seller was in Boston. The cost of shipping the large backing board that the system is mounted on was prohibitively expensive. So I had him unmount all the components and send them to me. I then reassembled them on a melamine-clad board here.

    I don't recommend anyone else do that unless you have a woodworking shop (I do) and some light metal-working capability. And the mechanical aptitude to figure out how to achieve the accuracy in re-mounting the parts (the original manufacturer uses industrial-strength jigs and templates to achieve that). And you like doing that kind of thing (I do). I had to re-engineer the hold-downs a bit as the guy who sent it to me damaged them when he disassembled them. No big deal. Needed new springs.

    It's a great machine. I think they are about $3500 new. Worth every cent if you're a picture frame shop. But you have to know what you're buying if you get them used.

  4. #24
    bob carnie's Avatar
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    Re: Computerized Matte Board Cutters

    Quote Originally Posted by Rich14 View Post
    Bob,

    I've had mine for 8 months. Operating it is exactly as easy as shown in the video. It's the only sane way to manually cut mat board. Yes, there is a model with a pneumatic unit. Mine is strictly mechanical. Like the video.

    I bought mine used from Skyline for about $850. I live in Oceanside, CA. The seller was in Boston. The cost of shipping the large backing board that the system is mounted on was prohibitively expensive. So I had him unmount all the components and send them to me. I then reassembled them on a melamine-clad board here.

    I don't recommend anyone else do that unless you have a woodworking shop (I do) and some light metal-working capability. And the mechanical aptitude to figure out how to achieve the accuracy in re-mounting the parts (the original manufacturer uses industrial-strength jigs and templates to achieve that). And you like doing that kind of thing (I do). I had to re-engineer the hold-downs a bit as the guy who sent it to me damaged them when he disassembled them. No big deal. Needed new springs.

    It's a great machine. I think they are about $3500 new. Worth every cent if you're a picture frame shop. But you have to know what you're buying if you get them used.
    Thanks Rich I think Sandy should look at this unit.. I did not know there was a strickly Mechanical.

    As far as setting up your window cuts how long does it take you to figure out how to set the positions.. I have used a computerised and its easy, and we now hand cut and its just a matter of pencils on the back of the matt.
    Are you pre marking the matts for final cuts..??

    I am useless in set up so I actually would send a more mechanically inclined person to Mass, make them show how to work the unit and then bring it back - set it up- and then teach me.

  5. #25

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    Re: Computerized Matte Board Cutters

    Quote Originally Posted by bob carnie View Post
    Thanks Rich I think Sandy should look at this unit.. I did not know there was a strickly Mechanical.

    As far as setting up your window cuts how long does it take you to figure out how to set the positions..
    You just decide the width of border you want and set the stops to that measurement. It's a direct process.

  6. #26

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    Re: Computerized Matte Board Cutters

    Quote Originally Posted by bob carnie View Post
    Sandy this is the system I am considering...

    Rich - how long have you had this machine? and does it live up to the video as being very easy to use?
    For some reason I thought the Easterly system had a compressor attached to hold the matt into place and to drive the knife into the board??
    These units look interesting.

    Rich, the Esterly Speed Mat cutters appear to have been produced for many years. What would be the important things for a potential buyer to ask a seller of a used unit? And especially for buying a good working unit that could be shipped as is.

    I can figure out how to make it work, if all the parts are there.

    Sandy
    http://www.sandykingphotography.com/
    For discussion and information about carbon transfer please visit the carbon group at Yahoo.
    https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/...nTransfer/info

  7. #27
    multi format
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    Re: Computerized Matte Board Cutters

    Quote Originally Posted by Rich14 View Post
    You just decide the width of border you want and set the stops to that measurement. It's a direct process.

    i just watched that video ...
    talk about direct .. its ez+fast too

  8. #28

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    Re: Computerized Matte Board Cutters

    On Logan mat cutters. Most are lower quality but their Platinum Edge Elite is the old Chronomat - a very good mat cutter. Logan bought out Chronomat and has done a good job of keeping the positive aspects of these mat cutters in their offering.
    I tend to procrastinate on stuff. One of these days I'll do something about it.

  9. #29

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    Re: Computerized Matte Board Cutters

    Quote Originally Posted by sanking View Post
    These units look interesting.

    Rich, the Esterly Speed Mat cutters appear to have been produced for many years. What would be the important things for a potential buyer to ask a seller of a used unit? And especially for buying a good working unit that could be shipped as is.

    I can figure out how to make it work, if all the parts are there.

    Sandy
    I would just ask them to assure you that the machine is in good condition, that it's been taken care of, that nothing is broken, how much it's been used. Also, give the company a call. They're a small mom and pop shop. They sometimes have deals on specific models, and can tell you a lot about the machines. They are also aware of some machines for sale, although they want you to buy new, of course.

  10. #30
    bob carnie's Avatar
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    Re: Computerized Matte Board Cutters

    Quote Originally Posted by Rich14 View Post
    I would just ask them to assure you that the machine is in good condition, that it's been taken care of, that nothing is broken, how much it's been used. Also, give the company a call. They're a small mom and pop shop. They sometimes have deals on specific models, and can tell you a lot about the machines. They are also aware of some machines for sale, although they want you to buy new, of course.
    They are definitely nice people , I have had a few discussions with them and will be back at it... The price of their machine is around 3500k USD and at the time I was looking (last year) our dollar sucked and I bought a used
    Fletcher matt cutter, but I think when the dollar gets better I will think again as I hate cutting matts manually and this machine looks very user friendly.

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