The Cameo Pro is Silhouette’s 24 inch wide cutting machine that was released in November 2020. It is a big machine!
In order to have the ability to cut 24″ wide, it has to have a wide footprint.
One of the biggest things we see with cut issues on the Cameo Pro is not having it fully supported in order to cut properly.
Since it is a big machine, it HAS to have a big workspace.
It is NOT a machine that can work against gravity.
If you are using a 24″ cutting mat or cutting long lengths of vinyl with the machine I recommend your table surface be at least 40″ wide by 52″ long.
The machine CANNOT work against gravity, so the mat or materials have to be fully support in the FRONT and the BACK of the machine or you can experience cut issues.
When I received my Cameo Pro to test it for Silhouette, my husband immediately thought that we should build a custom stand/table for it and set to work on planning it. (It may have been motivated by the fact that I took over his gaming table.)
We completed the DIY Cameo Pro Stand and have shared those instructions for free HERE.
However, we also understand that not everyone has the ability to get the wood or pieces cut and assemble themselves, so I am also going to provide a few suggestions of work surfaces that could be alternatives for you.
Cameo Pro Workspace
Let me start by explaining what is needed and why I recommend this.
Keep in mind that any workspace for the Cameo Pro should be at least 40″ wide and I recommend 58″ long.
Why do I recommend this?
The Pro machine itself is 34.5″ wide, so you could probably get away with 36″, but the extra little bit means it’s more secure. I recommend 40″ wide for stability.
I have seen many, many photos where a user does not have it fully on a table and each end is hanging off. This is not fully supported and the Cameo Pro is too big of an investment to risk something happening to it. If the Pro is not fully supported, it can cause cut or feed issues.
For best cut results, the Pro should be used with the roll feeder/mat support set up at all times.
These roll feeder/mat support parts provide support for the cutting mat or vinyl to roll as flat as possible into the machine. If materials are hanging down in front (or behind) it can affect how the machine feeds, which will affect the cuts.
And the roll feeder/mat support NEEDS to be fully flat on a table. It should NOT be hanging off the table as it can cause stress on the points where the roll feeder/mat support attaches to the machine and can decrease the lifespan on the parts.
The roll feeder parts are not replaceable parts.
With the Cameo Pro set up properly with the roll feeder/mat support and stability bar installed, it is 14″ from front to back. So you will need a workspace that is one solid piece and I would suggest at least 15-17″ front to back. We built our stand 22″ front to back so it is stable and set up full time in that stable position.
Now, if you are planning to use the 24″ cutting mat or long lengths of vinyl, I recommend that you have at least 22″ of flat surface in front and behind the machine. This means that a flat, secure workspace of 58″ is necessary for the machine to function properly with a 24″ x 24″ cutting mat.
If the cutting mat is not fully supported, you can experience feed issues as the rollers cannot work against gravity to pull the weight of the mat into the machine.
If you are experiencing feed issues or cuts overlapping and you do not have this large workspace, I suggest placing it on the floor to cut with and see if that solves it.
If not, then there may be other factors at play and I would suggest taking a close look at this post
5 Steps to Setting Up & Troubleshooting the Cameo Pro
If the Pro is not set up properly, it will not cut properly and consistently.
These are the 2 biggest things we see when troubleshooting issues:
– workspace too small
– machine not set up properly
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Cameo Pro Table Options
Make sure first off that you have the space to be able to expand the table as needed for the full workspace necessary.
Option 1 – Large table
Any large table such as a kitchen table or a large piece of plywood securely on top of a table would work as long as it is 36″- 40″ wide x 58″ long.
This is actually what I started with when I was testing the Pro. Well, to be honest, I first had it on my video table that you can see in this unboxing video. https://youtu.be/Qb6CsliXSlA
And I quickly found that it was not sufficient enough to use the 24″ cutting mat or long lengths of vinyl.
All of my recommendations are based on my real-time mis-cuts and feed issues during testing and my own cutting, due to the machine not being able to pull it in against gravity.
This plywood tabletop worked well for me during the hundreds of testing hours I performed from September – November 2020 before the machine was released to the public. It is not a smooth surface, so I did have to be careful not to get splinters. However, while not fancy, it got the job done.
Option 2 – Studio Design Sew Ready Adjustable Craft Table
This table would work with the dimensions of 58.75″ W x 36″ D x 30.25″-39.25″ tall with the Cameo Pro machine fully supported in the center panel. In order to have the roll feeder/mat support installed, one side would need to be extended at all times.
The wheels are smaller, so be careful if you have any uneven surfaces such as tile floors or plan to move this around often.
It also has a couple baskets and shelf that could be used for storage.
Option 3 – Sullivans Home Hobby Table
The table dimensions are 36″ L x 59″ W x 35″ H (open) and 36″ L x 13″ W x 35″ H (closed).
It is very similar to Option 2 and would need to have one side extended to have the setup correct. It also has smaller wheels as well. Only something to note to be careful with from someone who has broken wheels off furniture moving it around my tile floors.
Option 4 – Sullivans Adjustable Home Hobby Table
This table measures 59″ L x 35.8 W x 29″-39″ H (open) or 17.5″ L x 35.8 W (closed). According to the description dimensions, the top is just barely large enough to have the Pro with the roll feeder/mat support setup without a side extended.
The Pro width is 34.5″ wide, so while I say I recommend 36″-40″, I think this would be stable enough.
This table also has 2 shelves below that could be used for storage.
The wheel size looks the same as previous options.
Option 5 – Drop leaf table
You can find these in used furniture shops, but they are also making a comeback. It is the idea we used for the design of our DIY Cameo Pro stand.
I have seen recommendations on one from Ikea, but in my search, the ones I found we not quite wide enough. Again, my recommendations is 36″-40″ wide so the Cameo Pro can sit securely without hanging over the edge of the table.
Now, are these the only options? No.
But, they are a few that might work for you or at least give you some idea of what you are looking for.
If I were to choose between the options above, I would choose either Option 4 or Option 5. But, it really just depends on what will work best for you. For me, I will probably be using our DIY stand forever, but one of these other tables may find their way into my craft studio in the near future for another workspace.
The biggest thing that I want to emphasize is that you need an adequate workspace to have the Cameo Pro function properly. If the machine is not set up properly and on a large work space, it is NOT the machine’s fault if it’s not working right.
It HAS to be set up properly to cut properly.
We troubleshoot a lot of Silhouette issues each week. Hundreds into the thousands and in most cases we can get the user up and cutting again, no matter their Silhouette machine model, IF they are willing to troubleshoot with us.
If you have hung in there and are still reading, I hope you have gathered some tips and things to think about.
We would love to see what you are working on.
Feel free to post on the Silhouette Cameo Pro Tips & Troubleshooting or the
Silhouette Secrets+ with EllyMae FB groups.
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