Hello! So you’ve joined the Cameo 3 Club by taking advantage of Silhouette America’s biggest sale of the year! If you’re anything like me, welcome to what will become a small obsession.
I’ve been hearing a lot of concern about Cameo 3 issues, whether it be software, Bluetooth, where to buy materials, what to start with, what is this autoblade and how do I get it to cut and more! I am going to try and take it one step at a time so I don’t overwhelm you!
Yes, there are a lot of great tutorials, people with great knowledge and reputations, and Facebook groups abound. Please, please, please…..take every piece of advice with a grain of salt in the groups. Be wary of those who are constantly giving a great deal of negative opinions-specifically that the autoblade and/or the Cameo 3 is a piece of junk. It’s not and a majority of people LOVE it, myself included. Most often issues arise because of user error and ignorance. (Ignorance is not a bad word! It just means that we lack the knowledge which is attainable!!)
Where to start?
- Backup your library!! If you are a current owner of designs, purchased or self-made, you should make it a habit of backing up your library regularly — especially prior to upgrading or updating your current software.
- Software and Firmware. Hopefully you took advantage of downloading the free design software while you were waiting for your new machine to arrive. If you have, still make sure that you install the most recent update and firmware.
- Gather some simple supplies. Hey, you want to make your first attempt on some adhesive vinyl or HTV (heat transfer vinyl), please have at it. I would recommend you choose something a little less costly so as not to freak out when you realize you just wasted an entire sheet of the last red HTV you have on hand. Card stock will do nicely.
- Pick a simple shape. Yes, I know we all want to jump in and make all those wonderful things that everyone posts or that are on those project boards. Unless you are a craft/graphic/tech ninja, simple is the way to go for now. The program is capable of so much, you may get overwhelmed and frustrated when things don’t go quite as planned.
- Make your first cut. Yes, it should be super easy and it will be, but you do need to be aware. Aware of how to load the material on the mat, what material selection to make, remembering to choose the correct tool that is in your machine (autoblade, pen, ratchet, etc.)
Success? If not, here are one of the most frequent mistakes I’ve heard:
#1: Cuts are not consistent. Skipping around and then slicing crosswise across the entire piece of material and/or (yikes!!) through the mat. Solutions to try: #1: If using the autoblade, make sure it is seated all the way down in the carriage and locked in securely.
The first picture shows you the two ribs on the autoblade. The next one shows the notches that the ribs for those notches. The one below that shows the autoblade firmly seated and locked in place. Notice the blue dot in the locking mechanism? While the fourth picture shows the blue dot as well, implying that the lock is indeed firmly engaged, there is a space just above that shows that the blade is not firmly seated.
(Note: The autoblade with only work in the first (blue) slot in your dual carriage and only on the Cameo 3. Regular ratchet blades and pens, etc., will work in either slot).
#2: Blade not self-adjusting.
Yes, sometimes there is an issue with blades, but most often it’s a simple fix or mistake. First, if you feel that your autoblade is not adjusting, remove it from the carriage and inspect the blade.
a.) Check that the end cap is secure and there isn’t anything stuck or blocking the blade like card stock or vinyl. CAREFULLY depress the tip, avoiding the blade, and make sure that the red line is advancing. If so, advance it around to the beginning before re-seating it.
b.) Check that you are selecting the autoblade in the software. At the time of this post, the blade defaults to the black ratchet blade. Once you select the material you are cutting, you need to make sure and scroll down to change the blade type to the autoblade.
You should be making your first perfect cuts if you follow these tips. If you’re still having problems, feel free to contact me through this site or on my Facebook page. I love my Cameos (yes, 1 and 3) and want you to love yours, too!
Until next time, Happy Crafting!!