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Purchased used machine, missing parts, need advice

cadcoke5cadcoke5 Member Posts: 6
I have purchased a used Cricut model CREX001 and am confused over several issues.

1st, I think this is more commonly referred to as the Cricut Expression.  But, that term doesn't seem to be used much when I search for supplies and trying to find the parts that are missing from the kit I purchased.

I know I need a cutting mat.  Would any cutting mat on E-bay that mentions the Cricut be compatible, provided I get the right size?  I think I need a 12x12.  But, is the 12x24 compatible?

Are Cricut cutting tips all compatible with all models?

I have not seen pen adapters that list the Expression as a model it fits. But, are all these perhaps compatible among all models?

My main goal is to cut out stencils and ornamental foil to help me when I make props and decorate for a community theater group. So, I will nearly always want to adapt my own art work.  I know how to use software like Inkscape, and can generate SVG files.  Or even G-code that is used on some types of machines.  What discouraged me is when I read on Wikipedia, that the company that makes the Cricut won a lawsuit that kept 3rd parties from making any software that was compatible with a Cricut machine.  Is this still the case? The article said that the Cricut is designed to be a closed-off system. So does that make it impossible to really do your own original work with it?

Thanks for any advice for a complete new user that doesn't even have a  complete kit.

-Joe

Comments

  • Crazy_Mr_ZingCrazy_Mr_Zing Member Posts: 3,639
    edited November 2020
    Your correct able the lawsuit but some year latter to somewhat rub salt into the wound they discontinued all support for these machines

    Yes Closed off system rather describes the business model well

    I'm not sure it would be worth spending a lot of money on this machine

    Even to use the software I mention below you would you need a least one cartridge , a blade holder ,mat

    I don;t this anyone developed Inkscape to Cricut plugin ?

    A third party developed a plugin for sure cut a lot software which costs $US50-60

    If that is something you which to pursue and you use facebook I would suggest You join the following group they keep up to date with scal and circut expression
    https://www.facebook.com/groups/cricutexpression




    Post edited by Crazy_Mr_Zing on
    I Use Zing Air, Make The Cut - Pop Card Studio, WinXP- Win7 -Win10
    Paper Modellers I Revere Marc Hagan-Guirey ----- Yoshinobu Miyamoto ----- Peter Dahmen
    Gallery ID #26944 ----- Link to My Cloud Have a Look your Welcome to Make Use of the Files
  • Liz_ALiz_A Member Posts: 10,955
    @cadcoke5 - as Mr. Crazy mentioned there were two lawsuits by ProvoCraft the developers of the Cricut cutter brand wherein 3 software companies were sued and required to cease and desist allowing their software to connect to a Cricut cutter. That still applies today, no 3rd party software can communicate with a Cricut. You can however find 3rd party mats, blade holders, etc. that will work just fine in the older Cricut cutters. The cutter works with almost any mat that is 12 x 12 or 12 x 24....people still buy the 12 x 24 Cricut mats for other cutters because they are so inexpensive compared to others, which is really a surprise considering ProvoCrafts want to charge ridiculous prices for most of their stuff. For software, your only hope is an illegal version of SCAL - Sure Cuts A Lot - version 2, which is being sold for a ridiculous amount of money, just google it and you will find it, you will also find information in the FB group mentioned above. Good luck!
    Still using MTC but slowly migrating to SCAL. KNK cutters including the Force and Maxx Air continue to be my favourites. Fluent in other cutter languages.
  • MeFlickMeFlick Member Posts: 9,307
    if your goal is to create and cut your own designs a Cricut  Expression cutter is NOT the cutter you want. First, as already mentioned that model is no longer supported. Second, it requires cartridges to cut objects from. As already noted, the 3rd party software programs that did cut to those cutters were sued years ago to stop because their goal is to lock you into their stuff. While they were eventually forced by users to allow the import of SVG files into their later software to cut to their cutters, you have to use their programs and their programs are horrible to work with if you are just a little tech savvy. If I wanted to cut my own designs, now that Make the Cut software can no longer be obtained nor does it work with newer cutters, I would look at Sure Cuts Alot software (SCAL) and the cutters that you can use with it. 
    Go Vols!
    image
    Cutting with 18" Silver Bullet and a KNK Force (the rest are collecting dust!)
  • SandyMcCSandyMcC Member Posts: 7,871
    The Cricut Expressions 1 can now cut from Sure Cuts A Lot 5 and there are MANY owners of the original Cricut Expressions 1 taking advantage of this.  The Cricut Expressions 2 model, however, cannot cut from Sure Cuts A Lot 5 or any other program. It requires cartridges.  As Crazy Mr Zing pointed out, there's a Facebook group that helps Cricut 1 owners with what's needed to get it working with SCAL5. If you want to pursue this AND be able to find out about accessories suitable for your model, definitely join that group. The owner is just amazing in her support and documentation.
    Sandy McCauley
    Cutting with KNK Force, Maxx Air, Zing Orbit, Skycut C and D
    Over 90 free MTC videos: http://www.iloveknk.com/support/mtc-support/
    Latest MTC User Manuals: http://www.iloveknk.com/Support/user-manuals/
  • cadcoke5cadcoke5 Member Posts: 6
    Thank you all for the comments.  In my hast, I did already purchase some 3rd party accessories (mat, blades, and a power supply).  When I saw that SVGs could be imported to their own software, that gave me hope. 

    I just checked out the Sure Cuts A Lot 5 software. Their website says, " Sure Cuts A Lot v5 does not cut with the Cricut™ Personal/Expression/Create/Cake machines.

    -Joe

  • Crazy_Mr_ZingCrazy_Mr_Zing Member Posts: 3,639
    Scal 5 requires the Addition of a driver to be able to cut to the old cricut cutters

    this facebook group has all the information and expertise you need
    https://www.facebook.com/groups/cricutexpression





    I Use Zing Air, Make The Cut - Pop Card Studio, WinXP- Win7 -Win10
    Paper Modellers I Revere Marc Hagan-Guirey ----- Yoshinobu Miyamoto ----- Peter Dahmen
    Gallery ID #26944 ----- Link to My Cloud Have a Look your Welcome to Make Use of the Files
  • Liz_ALiz_A Member Posts: 10,955
    edited December 2020
    @cadcoke5 - that is the official statement from the software developer. However someone has developed a third party plugin that allows SCAL5 to connect to the Cricut cutters. It's illegal, so we do not openly support it or provide links to it. We let that Facebook do that, they are then the libel ones.
    Still using MTC but slowly migrating to SCAL. KNK cutters including the Force and Maxx Air continue to be my favourites. Fluent in other cutter languages.
  • cadcoke5cadcoke5 Member Posts: 6
    I am sort of surprised the lawsuit succeeded at all.

    There have been a number of successful lawsuits by consumers who own smart phones, and wanted to do things like fix their phones, or install different operating systems.  The courts have ruled that the consumer owns the phone, and so has the right to do with it what they want.  I would think that preventing consumers from using a Cricut to operate it how they want, would be a similar thing.

    Anyway, as soon as I learned about Provo Craft's policies, I immediately disliked the company.  I may yet sell my kit, and find a different craft cutter.  I purchased the machine for only $50, and added another $50 in supplies and parts.  So I may be able to sell to someone who doesn't need to use it the way I want to do.

    -Joe


  • cadcoke5cadcoke5 Member Posts: 6
    Scal 5 requires the Addition of a driver to be able to cut to the old cricut cutters
    The youtube link actually duplicated the link to the Facebook page.  But by copying the text on the link, I was able to find the actually intended video.


    -Joe


  • cadcoke5cadcoke5 Member Posts: 6
    Liz_A said:
    someone has developed a third party plugin that allows SCAL5 to connect to the Cricut cutters. It's illegal, so we do not openly support it or provide links to it.
    Given that Provo Craft has completely ended support for these older machines, I wonder if the past court wins are essentially void.  Especially, since Provo Craft has remove the software that used to work with the older machines.  It is like the manufacturer of a car canceling the software that allowed the car to use its radio.  Yes, the car runs, but some nice features were removed by the maker of the car.

    At least with phones, courts have frowned on that sort of action by the manufacturers.

    -Joe

  • Liz_ALiz_A Member Posts: 10,955
    @cadcoke5 - in order for the developers of SCAL, MTC and the 3rd other software party that wrote software that communicated with Cricuts, the developers had to reverse engineer into the Cricut's proprietary copyright protected hardware and firmware in order to determine how to bypass the restrictions otherwise in place to prevent communications with the cutter. What prompted the second lawsuit was MTC introducing the ability for people to "backup" the copyright cartridge images from cartridges to their computer, which likely was of more concern than the previous grievance. 

    I do not think because ProvoCraft has declared their cutters as legacy and therefore out of support that that nullifies any court actions. If so the moratorium is likely something like 50 years, which is a common period of time for copyright protection. Just because Coke changed their logo doesn't mean the copyright on their older logos is negated.
    Still using MTC but slowly migrating to SCAL. KNK cutters including the Force and Maxx Air continue to be my favourites. Fluent in other cutter languages.
  • SandyMcCSandyMcC Member Posts: 7,871
    Since the developer is now actually fixing Cricut Expressions bugs in SCAL5, I'm guessing he's decided he's not too concerned about Provo Craft coming after him.  I was surprised to hear this but given I'm FB friends with the person who has been reporting these Cricut Expressions bugs AND testing the SCAL5 updates resolving them, it's very much a real thing that's happening.  Walking the slippery slope. 
    Sandy McCauley
    Cutting with KNK Force, Maxx Air, Zing Orbit, Skycut C and D
    Over 90 free MTC videos: http://www.iloveknk.com/support/mtc-support/
    Latest MTC User Manuals: http://www.iloveknk.com/Support/user-manuals/
  • SandyMcCSandyMcC Member Posts: 7,871
    lolol  I just approved your post over on the SCAL forum with instructions on how to install the Windows 10 driver you'll need. Note that the SCAL forum requires 3 legit posts before a mod no longer needs to pre-approve. 
    Sandy McCauley
    Cutting with KNK Force, Maxx Air, Zing Orbit, Skycut C and D
    Over 90 free MTC videos: http://www.iloveknk.com/support/mtc-support/
    Latest MTC User Manuals: http://www.iloveknk.com/Support/user-manuals/
  • Liz_ALiz_A Member Posts: 10,955
    @SandyMcC - LOL I am pretty sure that SCAL developer is not worried either, Cricut is just gaining new customers as they bring on new products, I am sure they do not want to bring on the mass hate they gathered with the SCAL and MTC lawsuits...I remember there were some pretty scathing comments, even a threat that everyone go to their office with their Cricut and burn it! Don't mess with crafters!
    Still using MTC but slowly migrating to SCAL. KNK cutters including the Force and Maxx Air continue to be my favourites. Fluent in other cutter languages.
  • MeFlickMeFlick Member Posts: 9,307
    cadcoke5 said:

    .. . . I wonder if the past court wins are essentially void. . . 
    To clarify regarding the past lawsuits, there was never a court “win” for any party. The lawsuits were settled out of court with an agreement to remove the plugins and programming that allowed the 3rd party software to work with PC’s cutters. It was a case of the big boys having more money to prolong the fight then the little guy. As a result, there was an out of court settlement. No one but the parties no what the terms of those settlement agreements were as they are not filed with the court, the lawsuit is simply dismissed.
    Go Vols!
    image
    Cutting with 18" Silver Bullet and a KNK Force (the rest are collecting dust!)
  • cadcoke5cadcoke5 Member Posts: 6
    A final update.  I have thing working.  First, I had to update the Windows USB Drivers.  I never was able to do the firmware update I thought I needed. But, it turns out the Expression version 2.35 that was already in there is OK.  Another source had given the acceptable versions as 2.34,2.43 The comma was incorrect. It seems that it should have said 2.34-2.43 to indicate a range.

    I also was never able to get the Sure Cuts a Lot software to test its connection. That made me think it was not working. But, yet, if I draw something, and click the Cut button, it works.

    -Joe


  • Liz_ALiz_A Member Posts: 10,955
    @cadcoke5 - sounds like you're on your way! Happy cutting!
    Still using MTC but slowly migrating to SCAL. KNK cutters including the Force and Maxx Air continue to be my favourites. Fluent in other cutter languages.
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