Read BREN Inc's FAQ for frequently asked questions and answers.
Q: What size cutter is best for my application?
BREN carries three cutter models. The BREN 724 Razor holds material from 2" to 30" and will cut characters from 1/2" to 23.5” wide. The BREN 740 Razor holds material up to 46" and cuts material from 1/2” to 39.5” wide. The BREN 752 Razor will hold material from 2" to 60" and will cut material from 1/2” to 51.5” wide. Keep in mind that if you require a product that is wider than one of these specs, BREN Cutters allow you to cut in “landscape” mode; this means that you can produce vinyl/stencils that range in size from 1/16” to several feet. BREN cutters have guaranteed tracking up to 10 meters.
Q: Why doesn’t BREN Inc. sell oil board?
Oilboard is primarily used by companies that have manual-punch stencil machines. In general, oilboard is no longer used due to the following reasons:
- ALL dragging-knife cutters are designed to use materials that have a backing to accommodate the cutting function. This means that you would have to have oilboard produced with a backing, which is not typically available.
- Oilboard commonly comes in the form of sheets, which defeats the purpose and function of an electronic cutter. Material used on a modern cutter are typically available on a roll and allows you to produce stencils. Back-to-back, in virtually any size that will fit on the roll. Oilboard can actually be put on a roll but due to it’s construction, it will develop a severe "curl" and become virtually unusable.
- Oilboard is made by taking a coarse grade of card stock and saturating it with linseed oil. There can be major concerns with the storage and handling of it due to its high degree of flammability and health concerns due to the oil itself. Most major companies would not allow this material to be used to any degree in today's production environment.
- Because oilboard is made from a coarse card stock, it is extremely abrasive to the cutting blade. Somewhat like cutting a cardboard box with a Swiss army knife. You will "dull" the cutting edge very quickly. This in fact means that your cost for replacement blades will offset the savings you might appear to get on the material itself.
- Oilboard is not saturation proof and will eventually soak up enough ink to render it useless. That means the number of uses is more limited than an impermeable material. Oilboard can NOT be produced with any level of adhesive to improve its contact, prevent over-run and provide increased stencil quality. Synthetic materials can.
The most common stencil materials are polyethylene, polypropylene or true polyester(mylar). They are durable, flexible and easy to cut on an electronic cutter. Approximate material costs are in the $0.43 - $0.50 per square foot range. And since they do not damage the cutting blade the cost may actually be less than oilboard used in an electronic cutter.
Q: What are the main differences between your product and the competitor’s product?
There are several ways to answer this. Our cutters have a higher degree of accuracy, a higher quality of power source for more reliability and a more capable operation and function. But these really are very difficult terms to specify. Let me say it in a way that should be very easy to compare:
- Our cutters are used by the U.S. Military, its thousands of sub-contractors, industrial customers worldwide and in many of the harshest applications in the world. Many of our devices have been in use for over 20 years. In the world of electronics this is almost unheard of reliability. BREN Cutters are built to produce re-useable stencils in an industrial environment.
- One of the easiest comparisons to make is to simply ask how small is the character height of the smallest cuttable character? Our cutters are routinely cutting stencils with character heights as small as 0.06" in height.
- BREN Cutters use a proprietary driver which allows users to cut directly from most Windows applications. We have many customers who use programs such as AutoCAD, CorelDRAW, Adobe Illustrator, Microsoft Word, and Excel. BREN offers the only fully automated stencil process of this type.
- Although we do have some product "reps" throughout the world, for the most part our cutters are NOT sold through re-sellers. This means you buy direct from BREN Inc., bypassing the “sales person”. Our professional, on-site sales staff is non-commissioned, and are very knowledgeable about BREN Cutters and Accessories. We ship from our location in Tennessee, directly to you!
- BREN Cutters come standard with a THREE-year warranty, as well as LIFETIME technical support. Our expert technical support team is located onsite; no outsourced, third-party connection! You will receive FREE technical support as long as you own your BREN Cutter. One of the most common problems with any cutting system is when a company grows to depend on it and the operator decides to leave, or retire, taking all the knowledge with them. Not to worry – our tech support team is here for you and will spend as much time as necessary to walk you through the process of using your cutter.
Q: How can we create signs with multiple colors?
Assuming you are speaking of a cut vinyl sign, let's use an example of say a three color sign. In short, and this to some extent depends on the software you are using, you set the sign size, load and cut each color of vinyl, weed out the waste on all, place transfer tape on each and then place each color on the sign blank as needed. Certainly there are several ways to do this, but this is basically all there is to it.
Q: How long do cutting blades last?
There is actually no precise rule for this; the lifetime of a blade is completely dependent on a variety of factors, such as how much you use them, how often, and what type of material you are cutting. For example, vinyl material is typically very thin and easy to cut (easy on the blade), where reflective material has glass beads within the material; this will wear down the blade much faster. The key to extending the life of your blade is to perform test cuts regularly to ensure you have your blade extension, as well as your force correctly set.