MTC 3.0 beta solves print and cut

November 1, 2010 at 1:13 pm 61 comments

Update: MTC 3 is out of beta. Download MTC 3.2 to take advantage of these and many more features.

I played around with the beta version of Make-The-Cut 3 last night and I am amazed at the results. 2 issues have been standing in the way for reliable print and cut on the Cricut. One is being able to print at a specific size and position on the page and the other is the inaccuracy of the Cricut, especially its tendency to get further off course as you move away from the starting point. Somehow Andy (MTC’s developer) has magically overcome both of these problems to create a simple, flexible and accurate print and cut process using any printer and a Cricut machine.

Here’s a quick video

And here’s the step by step because I go really fast.

1) Open MTC and click on the Pixel Trace button and navigate to where your graphic is stored and click open. (I recommend you start with a simple graphic with a well-defined outline for your first try). I picked one from Lettering Delights, of course.

2) Set the threshold to 254. You want to be sure you capture the entire outer edge of the graphic.

3) Check the “Set Image as Texture” checkbox and click Import.

4) Click on the imported graphic to select it and click on the Blackout button.

5) Uncheck “outline shapes” at the bottom of the Visual Mat tab.

6) Choose File>Print and print to the printer of your choice. I used the default settings on both a Brother and an Epson printer, but you want to be sure anything that would change the size of the print (such as shrink to fit, etc.) is deselected. You also do not want it set to borderless printing.

7) Place the printed paper on the Cricut mat carefully aligned along the outlines in the upper left hand corner (as shown in photo above).

8 )Select Cut with Provocraft Cricut and cut using settings appropriate for your type of paper.

That’s it you’re done!

Note: If you don’t get satisfactory results using the simple process above you may need to make adjustments to your printer or cutter. I’ve put together a step by step process for finding and fixing problems here.

Entry filed under: Computer Crafts, Cricut. Tags: , , , .

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61 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Debbie  |  November 1, 2010 at 1:19 pm

    WOW – and to think I have been wanting an Imagine. This is even better than an Imagine because I can use clip art I already have! This really has my juices flowing – will have to see if I can find some time to try this TODAY. And I have definitely marked my calendar to attend the webinar tomorrow night – it should be very exciting.

  • 2. Carolyn Champion  |  November 1, 2010 at 1:51 pm

    Thanks for the great tutorial. I can hardly wait to try it out. Aren’t we so lucky to have Andy and Make the Cut and all of his wonderful helpers. Smiles Carolyn

  • 3. Phyllis  |  November 1, 2010 at 2:48 pm

    oh so wonderful, great job! Off to play we go:<)

  • 4. Ruth Gillis Stevens  |  November 1, 2010 at 6:23 pm

    Great vid and directions… simple and straightforward… easy to follow – gotta go try mine!

  • 6. Tanya  |  November 1, 2010 at 7:43 pm

    Awsome Demo – Thanks so much!

    Is it possible to do this without leaving the white border around the clipart as well?

    • 7. Kay  |  November 1, 2010 at 9:47 pm

      Yes. There is no white border on this one. The white inner border and blue outer border is part of the graphic.

  • 8. Dana J  |  November 2, 2010 at 8:29 am

    Thank you so much! I am quite excited about this!

  • 9. 7524kes  |  November 2, 2010 at 12:13 pm

    Wow, this is quite the break-through. Impressive cut quality. Thanks!

  • 10. Charlotte Fields  |  November 2, 2010 at 1:22 pm

    The tutorial is really great, worked like a charm but can you tell me how to resize the imagine when you bring it in, or do I have to have it set to the right size before I import.

    • 11. Kay  |  November 2, 2010 at 3:13 pm

      It is easiest if you size it before you bring it in, but if you want to size it in MTC, check out this video for instructions

  • 12. 7524kes  |  November 2, 2010 at 3:04 pm

    Just tried MTC. I had a problem with re-sizing the graphic (too large) and the texture within it. I found the problem was solved on this video posted yesterday on MTC: Not complicated, but not entirely intuitive about scaling the graphic and then the texture. Thanks again for the info. Going to finally purchase MTC (longtime SCAL user).

  • 13. Janice  |  November 2, 2010 at 4:45 pm

    I am BEYOND excited! I was drooling over the Imagine just last night, trying to figure out who loved me enough (and had the money) to get me one of these for an “early” Christmas present. You just gifted me!!!

  • 14. Pam  |  November 2, 2010 at 5:35 pm

    Thank you so much for the video. I just love MTC!

  • 15. Cindy  |  November 3, 2010 at 7:12 am

    Thank you so much for the video. I am so excited about this because I was bummed I couldn’t buy an Imagine. Now I don’t have to!! I did try this last night and I was having trouble lining up the printing and the cut. I think it’s my printer that’s printing in the wrong place. Is there any way to fix this? My printer is an HP2200 (yeah a few years old). Thanks again!

    • 16. Kay  |  November 3, 2010 at 1:42 pm

      Assuming the size of your image is correct but the printer is just offsetting the image on the page, then you just compensate for the offset by moving the graphic on the page before cutting or by loading the paper on the mat differently. Here is Dana’s tutorial on making the corrections.

  • 17. Nubiancrafternc  |  November 3, 2010 at 11:56 am

    Thanks for the awesome tutorial!!! Is there a way to change the colors or textures of a LD or clipart design once you import it into the program?? ( I see that you left the colors of the cute owl as is but what if I wanted to change the pink to a print?) TIA

    • 18. Kay  |  November 3, 2010 at 1:37 pm

      Yes, you would just trace as normal, break apart and then apply the color or texture to each piece individually, just as it was done before MTC added textures. MTC still can’t trace by color, though, so this would be much easier starting with a dingbat character or line drawing than with clipart that is already colored.

  • 19. Jennifer  |  November 4, 2010 at 9:01 am

    Looks good. But I will have to stick with SCAL until they come out with a MAC version!

  • 20. Kris in Alaska  |  November 6, 2010 at 2:24 am

    Awesome tutorial! Thanks sooooooooo much! Can’t wait to try it!

  • 21. Stacie G  |  November 6, 2010 at 8:29 pm

    I just bought MTC last night and am completely thrilled with the decision to switch from SCAL.

    But… I’m having one problem that I can’t seem to find the answer to:
    if anyone can lead me to the right answer, I’d appreciate it!

    I have a file I created in Inkscape that I used in SCAL. It imported into SCAL with no problems, but with MTC, it only imports one piece (there are 4 pieces on 2 layers)… what modifications do we need to make to Inkscape files to have them import correctly into MTC?
    I tried “Grouping”, “Combine”, and “Union” (in Inkscape) and none of them seem to want to work! Still only getting one of the pieces…
    My email is hestiashelper at gmail dot com if you want me to send you a copy of the file to see if you can figure it out or if you want to reply to this question privately. Thank you to any and all who can help!!!

  • 22. Debby  |  November 7, 2010 at 6:58 pm

    Hi Kay,
    I have bee playing with this all afternoon and I have been unable to get a good cut. I followed the instructions in Dana’s Tutorial by adjusting the placement of the image on the mat by measuring the x and y locations, adjusting the placement and then cutting, but I still have white space which is not part of the image.
    I will try again tomorrow evening, I’m sure it is “operator error”.
    Thanks for all your hard work in putting these tutorials together.

  • 24. Cathy  |  November 8, 2010 at 11:22 pm

    Just a question — I can’t seem to enlarge a picture after I import it to the mat — only an outline gets larger and the picture stays the same. Other than that, that’s neat how it works. Mine doesn’t cut outside the edges unless I make a shadow — so I’m still working on it. Thanks for sharing your tutorial!

    • 25. Kay  |  November 9, 2010 at 7:49 am

      Check out my response to this question in an earlier comment.

      • 26. Cathy  |  November 9, 2010 at 8:40 am

        Thanks for the quick response! I’ve printed it up and plan to read it at break time.

  • 27. Wendy  |  November 10, 2010 at 5:45 pm

    So excited I think I will now by MTC after being a SCAL user

  • 28. Debbie C  |  November 12, 2010 at 10:08 pm

    I use SCAL but really want to maybe get MTC because it looks as if it has alot of great functions and this print and cut is awesome. I downloaded the trial but its not the beta 3.0. Where can I get that so that I can try this print and cut before buying. I just want to make sure and do my research before buying another software. I really hope this print and cut is as easy as you showed so I’m excited to try it. If you can help me with getting the beta file to try?

  • 30. Susi  |  November 14, 2010 at 9:49 am

    great news! I’d not been around for a bit – Print and Cut is something I’d always stayed away from on Cricut as it seemed so fiddly and didn’t give the great results I get with my ROBO but I’ll have to have a good play now and being able to cut larger sheets of card is a plus. Thanks for your hard work and great explanations – Andy and his team have really done us proud this time.

  • 31. Scrappincrazy09  |  November 22, 2010 at 2:18 am

    I have seen many ways to do the print and cut, but this is by far the best that has worked for me!! My printer and cricut don’t like one another, so my printer wins and my cricut has to be the adjuster. Tried the new printer driver and it made a bit of a difference. Totally stoked it works better!!! Now I don’t need the Imagine!!!! Thanks Andy!! Would prefer to give my money to you!

  • 32. Diane  |  November 22, 2010 at 7:03 am

    Wow, this is totally awesome! So now you can turn your Cricut into a Cricut Imagine! Thanks for sharing. ~Diane

  • 33. Scrappincrazy09  |  November 22, 2010 at 10:36 am

    As on person on another message board put and says it all, my Expression is now my Cricut “Imaginary” Machine”!!! I totally agree!

  • 34. Joanne Wright  |  November 22, 2010 at 2:12 pm

    Thank you ever so much for putting all of this data together for us all.. Your a sweetheart..
    Martinsburg, WV

  • 35. Kelley  |  November 27, 2010 at 11:43 pm

    I have just found your blog and all I can say is WOW WOW WOW!!! Thank you so much for this plethora of information. I am new to the Cricut and thought I may be limited (vs. Wishblade/Silhouette) and I do not feel that way anymore! Can’t wait to get started. :)

  • 36. Penny Duncan  |  November 30, 2010 at 1:11 pm

    AWESOME tutorial!!!! LOVE it!!!!!

  • 37. Kristin Lieb  |  December 1, 2010 at 2:37 pm

    Hi Kay! Love, love, love your tutorials. Thank God you make them or my MTC would sit idle. I left you a blog award over on my blog, so if you would like, come get it! PS – I’m ScrappyKristin on the MTC forum :-)

  • 38. flamenco92627  |  December 3, 2010 at 1:24 am

    Thanks for the great tutorial! I just got MTC but I don’t think this feature downloaded onto it. Do I have to do the update for it? I got two weeks ago.

    Also, I don’t know if you post these, but I left you a blog award on my blog, so feel free to come by and grab it for your blog. Thanks!

  • 39. Norma  |  December 12, 2010 at 1:41 pm

    I watched the video and read the printed tut. did everything. when I selected the image and clicked the blackout button I get a message saying “there have been no changes made since there is nothing to blackout”. can you tell me why I am getting this?

    • 40. Kay  |  December 12, 2010 at 6:13 pm

      If the image is just an outline with no internal shapes (like the letter C as opposed to the letter A, for example), then you will get that message because there truly is nothing to blackout. However, I seem to get this message at random sometimes and when I do, I just try again and it seems to fix itself.

  • 41. Norma  |  December 12, 2010 at 8:27 pm

    thanks for the reply. I have tried different images with some working and others not working. not sure why some won’t work since they are very similiar. just keep working with them!

  • 42. Karen  |  December 19, 2010 at 3:41 pm

    I have just obtained MTC and have viewed and printed out your video for Print and Cut. When I preview some graphics I see the image that will cut and others I just get a red rectangle and that is what it cuts rather than my image. What am I doing wrong?


    • 43. Kay  |  December 19, 2010 at 4:58 pm

      Sounds like you might need to adjust the threshold down until you get the shape, not the rectangle.

      • 44. Karen  |  December 19, 2010 at 8:18 pm

        Thanks. Will give that a try. The tut is great. The step by step directions are just what I need.

  • 45. Vemb  |  December 20, 2010 at 5:03 pm

    this is nice! I have a cricut personal electronic cutter though, not the expression. Will it work on my cricut? thanks.

    • 46. Kay  |  December 21, 2010 at 5:07 pm

      yes it will.

  • 47. Natalie M  |  January 1, 2011 at 12:31 am

    I downloaded the newest version now. I also have the Imagine. It’s not for everyone, but it is cool. I am so glad that you all can use MTC for print and cut. This will be very useful for me as I want to make earring cards with my own logo I create! Woo hoo! Best of both worlds! Happy New Year!

  • 48. Whitney C.  |  January 27, 2011 at 1:18 pm

    Thanks so much for showing how to do this. I have had SCAL2 for quite sometime now and still don’t have the hang of it. I just purchased MTC a few weeks ago and I am loving it. Thanks again for showing me how to do this. You Rock!!

  • 49. Leila  |  February 12, 2011 at 2:17 am

    Great tutorial…I’ve been hesitant to try it, but you make it look easy…thanks!

  • 50. Dee  |  March 24, 2011 at 1:55 pm

    I just tried this and everything went so well, except my cut was just a little off. Do I need to have my E at a certain setting to match up?

    Thank you,

    PS…please email me if you can! Thanks!

    • 51. Kay  |  March 24, 2011 at 5:04 pm

      Dee, please refer to the troubleshooting steps (PDF download) at the bottom of this post for details on how to correct for machine differences.

  • 52. Dee  |  March 24, 2011 at 6:29 pm

    Good grief! How in the world did I miss that?!? Thank you! I’m going to try to see where I’m going wrong.

    Thanks again!

    • 53. Dee  |  March 24, 2011 at 7:08 pm

      The printer is printing correctly, it’s the cricut that’s smidge off. So far I haven’t found any way to calibrate the E.

      • 54. Kay  |  March 24, 2011 at 10:57 pm

        There is no way to calibrate or adjust the E itself. SCAL has a recently added calibration feature, but barring that, you will need to shift your paper on the mat (or your design on the virtual mat) to compensate.

  • 55. Dee  |  March 24, 2011 at 11:24 pm

    I was able to make some adjustments on the Y to make the cut a little closer. I need to tweak it a little more. I also have SCAL2, maybe I should try PnC with that program as well.

    Thank you ever so much!

  • 56. SweetSassydiva  |  April 21, 2011 at 12:01 pm

    wow! can you still buy the mtc and have this feature compatible with the e?

    visiting you from the circle blog. I hope you check out my blog as well.

    • 57. Kay  |  April 21, 2011 at 7:26 pm

      Sadly, no. This is only available for Cricut owners who purchased MTC prior to March 17. SCAL has greatly expanded it’s print and cut capabilities though and is still available for Cricut users, but best to act fast. Have visited your blog many times! Thanks!

  • 58. ELLEN BAKER  |  August 4, 2011 at 7:51 am

    i totally agree that this is the best ever print and cut(evven better than the silhouettes own software)

  • 59. Sandra  |  October 8, 2011 at 10:12 am

    I must be so behind the times……Everything I’ve seen online until this very minute said that the MTC would no longer work with the Cricut…..I had previsouly downloaded the new version but then had to remove it and go back to my old version because it wouldn’t work on my Cricut. I just bought an Imagine but I want to take it back if MTC will work with my Expression…..HELP somebody!

  • 60. Sandra  |  October 8, 2011 at 10:23 am

    I found the problem….you had to have downloaded the 3.0 version before a certain date…..right? Because the 3.2 version won’t work with the Cricut Expression. Drat!

  • 61. Beah  |  November 13, 2011 at 9:10 am

    Wow I just tried this in SCAL with my expression and it worked perfectly on the test square, now off to print and cut. Thanks soooooo much to all involved.


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