"The addition of Foster Keencut products to our one-stop digital and screen printing shop has made a huge impact. The SteelTraK is easy-to-use and cuts signs perfectly every time. Its wall-mounted option saves us space as well. We started with an Excalibur, later adding the SteelTraK to our production line, making us that much more efficient."
Jonathan Bauer, Digital & Screen Print Production Manager
Voss Signs, LLC, Manlius, NY
112 Fairgrounds Drive
PO Box 553
Manlius, NY 13104
Toll Free: 800.473.0698
Phone: (315) 682-5943
Fax: (315) 682-7335
"The Sabre General Purpose Cutter is extremely easy to use and I get perfect cuts every time."
Matt Santora, Owner
Santora Media Group
2180 Garnet Ave. Suite 1E
San Diego, CA 92109
San Diego Banners
"The best piece of equipment we have ever bought with a ROI of less than 6 months."
Amin Suleman Nathoo,President
Topknotch Prep & Print Ltd
855 Matheson Blvd E #6
Mississauga, Ontario, L4W4L6
For the past ten years this small commercial printer has prided itself on maintaining open and friendly relationships with its customers while providing quality traditional offset, digital and wide format printing at the best possible rates. Topknotch not only provides excellent service to its customer, but works to remain conscientious of the environment as well as using recycled and FSC certified papers and printing with vegetable based inks.
"The Duratran Co. purchased our first Keencut system graphic cutter in 2000 and we have been in love with the performance ever since. Not only is the quality of these cutters unbeatable, but the consistency from graphic cut to graphic cut is simply phenomenal. Another great thing we have found with Keencut cutters is that they are so easy to learn to use. This really comes into play when we encounter delivery crunch times. Because these cutters are so easy to use, it helps us add extra staff to the cutting process very quickly. Training new material handlers to learn the cutting process usually takes just mere minutes. We have grown a lot since the purchase of our first Javelin cutter and have added more to the production department. I would give Keencut my highest recommendation to any other printer and graphic finisher. I would even go as far to say that these cutters are by far the best investment in finishing equipment that we have ever made."
Casey Ford, Owner and CEO
The Duratran Co.
203 S. Cutler Street
Spring Lake, Michigan 49456
Toll Free: 800.962.3119
There's No Hiding This Fact: The Rotatrim PowerTech Makes the Cut
It's no surprise that an avid sportsman would hunt until he found just the right trimmer for his camouflage manufacturing company.
That's precisely what Rip Stoltz, president of Louisiana-based Camowraps, did when he was searching for a power trimmer that would effectively cut through the adhesive camouflage vinyl products that adorn automobiles, ATVs and marine watercraft across the United States.
"We digitally print onto a bulk roll of adhesive-backed vinyl and then trim down the sheets to make kits," explains Stoltz.
He says the electrically powered Rotatrim PowerTech seamlessly cuts through the vinyl that is also clear-coated for scratch resistance, fade resistance and UV protection
"The durability of the machine was important to us when we chose the PowerTech," Stoltz adds, indicating that the trimmer is in use half of each week for about four hours at a time. "This cutter outlasts others in the industry from a longevity standpoint. The investment was worth it for the robustness and features. It's a tremendous value for a heavy-duty cutter." The cutter was also the appropriate size to fit the company's needs. "It wasn't overkill and wasn't too big. Plus we liked the self-sharpening blade and two-way cutting feature that other products didn't have."
The biggest benefit, he says, is the trimmer's efficiency. "Power trimmers take the manual labor out of a project. We don't have to reach across and cut, or use a ruler to cut. The automation definitely improves our operation's efficiency." The PowerTech is activated with the push of a foot pedal, leaving the hands free, and is electrically driven through a robust steel-reinforced belt.
While camouflage is key to the Camowraps business, Stoltz says the company won't hide one thing: the success they've had with the Rotatrim PowerTech. "We haven't had any issues with the trimmer but know that if we did, we could count on Foster Keencut to assist."
"The Rotatrim PowerTech is a tremendous value for the purpose it serves in our company."
Rip Stoltz, President
429 South Street
Slidell, LA 70460
Phone: (985) 607-0023
Happy in Kentucky: SteelTraK Saves Time, Money
Owner of Kentucky-based Amazing Signs and Banners Dale Mulhall used to rely almost exclusively on his panel saw. These days, however, it's all but retired.
"We used the panel saw hundreds of times a day," says Mulhall, "but now we use the Keencut SteelTraK on every project and the panel saw maybe once a month."
Mulhall admits, however, that he hadn't intended on purchasing a vertical multi-substrate cutter when he attended the 2008 NBM Show in Indianapolis. "I happened to see a demonstration and realized how well-built the machine was."
He also walked away convinced that the SteelTraK was the heavy-duty cutter that could handle the Dibond and Alumilite frequently used in his two man shop. "The more I looked at it, the more I realized that the tool would pay for itself."
And it did. In the first year.
It's All About Savings
The SteelTraK not only provides the clean, straight cut Mulhall was looking for, but it has also saved him at least two hours a day. Instead of cutting material on the panel saw first - a messy, ragged-edge endeavor that threw particles and dust throughout the shop - and then printing on vinyl, and finally applying to the substrate, he can print directly to substrate and cut.
"What it saves us more than time, though, is money," explains Mulhall of the reduction in waste. "When you're cutting with a razor, the razor is never straight, it wobbles and doesn't cut all the way through with the saw." The end result: slips, uneven cuts. Those mistakes were always costly for Mulhall since they meant starting each job over again - with new substrate, vinyl and printing. "The SteelTraK has cut down on my waste at least 10 percent."
Other benefits Mulhall points to are ease-of-use and longevity. When he was out of town once, Mulhall walked a customer through the trimming process with the SteelTraK, simply over the phone. "It's that easy," he says, of the client who made the cuts back at the shop. "And we're still using the original twin-wheel cutting tool that came with the machine."
When he looks back, Mulhall says he's happy he stumbled upon the Keencut SteelTraK demo. "For a small company like mine, that was a big purchase. We don't usually buy things that size," says Mulhall. "But it was well worth it."
"The SteelTraK is the heavy duty, large capacity version of its competitors. It's more rigid in its squareness and we can put a 5' x 10' sheet on it and not have to worry."
Dave Mulhall, Owner
Amazing Signs and Banners
4712 Foxchase Dr.
Sheperdsville, KY 40165
Phone: (502) 957-4149
We Have a Winner: Evolution-E2 Improves Speedway's Efficiency
Drivers on the track at the Michigan International Speedway aren't the only ones improving their times these days
The sign crew, with the help of the Keencut Evolution-E2, is also making significant gains. "This cutter has definitely increased our productivity," says Dustin Gilbert, graphic sign designer for Michigan International Speedway. "The Evolution operator gets things done ten-fold now that we have this machine."
And at a speedway, there are plenty of projects that need doing: directional signage for pedestrians, sponsor panels above the ticket gates, pace car decals, trailer wraps and vinyl graphics applied around the length of the track that now replace previously painted images. The sign crew uses the Evolution-E2 to trim and finish them all.
"In crunch time before races, we used to have two to three people in the shop working at different tables, cutting Coroplast manually with straight edges and knives," explains Gilbert. "Now we can have two more people out in the field completing other jobs, and only one running the Evolution."
Not only that, Gilbert says that cramped hands and injuries resulting from slipped blades are nonexistent now. "The Evolution-E2 is very safe. It's actually hard to get a finger inside it to cut yourself." What's more, Gilbert says that the speedway has significantly reduced wasted material since the crew is making fewer mistakes than they made when trimming by hand.
Just the Right Horsepower
The sign crew uses the Evolution-E2 every day for at least eight hours. "Two to three weeks before race time, the machine is going 12 to 14 hours a day," says Gilbert. The speedway also chose the 144" model of the precision cutter to handle wide format jobs. "This is a well-built piece of equipment, very precise - the biggest in the Evolution-E2 line - and with the ability to adjust cuts to the thousandths of an inch. And it's solid. We couldn't ask for more."
Even with that volume, Gilbert says the machine is performing beyond his expectations, and that even the blades have an incredible shelf life, considering the rigid materials being cut. "After seven months of having the Evolution-E2, we hadn't gotten even halfway through two boxes of blades."
The Proteus Workbench, designed to fit the Evolution-E2, is another product that Gilbert says is part of the speedway's new, winning solution. "The modular system is impressive - how you can put pieces together to create a bench - and if we wanted, we could easily transform it into an L shape by adding more pieces."
When Gilbert was in the market for a time-saving trimmer, he turned to a trusted Foster Keencut dealer. "Advantage Sign Supply, one of our main vendors, indicated that the Evolution-E2 was the best in the market for rigid materials and pointed us to a video of the product in action, cutting foam board and Coroplast. We quickly realized it was the tool we needed. Before we knew it, Advantage had it delivered, and we were ready to go."
As Gilbert and his crew look forward to future races at the speedway, they agree that purchasing the Evolution-E2 was a profitable strategy. "Price- and value-wise, this is one of the best investments we've ever made. It's one of the biggest cost-saving items we've ever purchased."
"The cuts are more exact and there are a lot fewer mistakes. The Evolution-E2 saves us time and money."
Dustin Gilbert, Graphic Sign Designer
Michigan International Speedway
Brooklyn, MI 49230