Silhouette Cameo - High Performance Vinyl Cutter

I got the bug one night looking at cool decals, thinking I could make those if I had a vinyl cutter. I had purchased a few decals for the RCR-GT40 that were done with a vinyl cutter and they looked good. I had some background in the color separation business as a youth and understood the process of layering and such. So WTF, time to find a machine that was inexpensive and had good software.  One thing I understood was that the software is key, their were plenty of low cost machines but the software was another story. I had looked at some of the home maker machine like the Cricut which was advertising like crazy. Inexpensive but lacked any sort of software and used some sort of cartridge system. Brother also recently releaced one like the Circut but again, cartridge based. Enter the Silhouette Cameo.  The machine looks and sized like an Ink Jet printer but cuts vinyl, paper and does all sorts of other things. You can get the vinyl from Amazon or online shops. I picked up some quality vinyl at H & H Sign Supply. They had a great selection, sampler packs, etc. My advice is to get Oracal or other quality product, some of the product I picked up from Amazon was no-name and not so good.

The software that comes with the Silhouette is so easy to use and yet very powerful. I had not use such well thought out CAD style software in a long time. It has many features and if you upgrade to the 'Pro' version it unlocks a few more things as well as ability to import addition formats which I needed. I run the package on the PC but it's support also on the Mac if you that sorta' person.

NOTE : They have release a new version, the link above to Amazon will show that model.
Silhouette Cameo
Silhouette Studio
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Esso Man
Googly Eyes Head Light Covers
Happy Faces Headlight Covers

Esso Happy Motoring

This is work I did from a simple Black and White logo I found on the web. It has just a few layers of colors stacked up and has been on my truck for over a year. Still in perfect condition. Note the fine detail the Cameo Cutter did with the 'Happy Motoring' text.

Googly Eyes

Above are some fun headlight covers that I made for the Mustang (The Ripper) both in standard and anime style.

Smiley Faces

Here are some more Smiley Face Headlight Covers.

With a little practice and 'engine'-uity you can do some really cool stuff. Start simple and then experiment with layered designs. Registration marks are key and getting good at laying things down comes from a bit of time with the materials but it's not hard at all. I didn't show any of the cool race car numbers I made, they can save you the ugly tape numbers you make at the track. Look at old '111' here at the bottom of the page, if I hadn't gone 4 wheels off and someone catching a picture of my crappy car numbers (and driving) I never whould have known!
Safety Stickers

Safety Decals

The old color laser printer decal I made on regular paper sticker stock look bad too, so I made a new one for the Mustang (The Ripper). Hopefully the safety crew will never have to use it, but at least it's readable now.