You know how I love my Cricut and my Sure Cuts A Lot. Well, recently Provo Craft (the makers of the Cricut electronic cutting machines) sued Craft Edge (the creators of SCAL) for copyright infringement. They settled out of court, but part of the settlement was that Craft Edge agreed to stop selling and supporting the version of SCAL that works with Cricut machines. So they stopped making SCAL 2 and came out with a version that will not work run the Cricut, but still works with other electronic cutters (SCAL3.)
Lots of crafters were so incensed that they sold their Cricuts and all their cartridges and instead bought one of the other cutters. Those other cutters go for hundreds of dollars more than the Cricut. I can’t afford to jump on that bandwagon. Besides, I only bought cartridges that I love. I still want to be able to cut those images, and I wouldn’t be able to on any other machine. But I also have lots of svg files that I downloaded for free, as well as many that I bought, and I want to use those, too!
As long as I don’t upgrade the firmware on my Cricut, my SCAL will continue to work with it, but I got to worrying. What would happen when my Cricut – which I use and abuse as I do all my tools – finally stops working? It’s over two years old now. What if I had to buy a new one? Would it come with firmware that blocks SCAL? A distinct possibility. If that happened, I’d have to buy two machines – a Cricut for my cartridges and one of the others to cut my svg files.
Hmmm. Two machines – one that works with SCAL and one that works with Cricut cartridges . . .
Then I got an email from CricutMachine.com advertising a Cricut Expression with the Picturesque cartridge, cutting mat, pens, and a sample of vinyl for $149! My original Expression was a great deal from Custom Crops for $229 with one cartridge. This $149 price was outrageous! I realized why. Provo Craft just came out with the Cricut Expression 2, so I guess there are a lot of regular old Cricuts that retailers need to get rid of to make way for the new product.
I figured that the older Cricuts would have the same firmware that my Expression has, which means they should still work with Sure Cuts A Lot. So I ordered one as a backup. My original machine is still in working order, albeit a little beat up. If the second machine lasts as long, I’ll be good for at least two years, by which time (hopefully) prices should come down.
It arrived today. I had to find out right away if it worked with my SCAL, and it does! I made this card from an svg from the Lettering Delights Banner Day collection. (The face is a Peachy Keen stamp, by the way.)
Let me tell you how this new Expression compares to my old one. The new one is quieter than the old one, and it closes and opens easier. I always think I’m going to break the old one when I open it. It takes a lot of force and finally breaks free and opens, but the new one is very smooth and doesn’t get “stuck.” The blade housing on the new one is plastic, where it’s metal on the old one. My first Expression always smelled like a skunk inside! Seriously!! Still does. And according to the message boards, mine isn’t the only one. The new one just smells like plastic (whew!)
My original thought was to keep the new one as a backup, but my husband joked that soon I’d have them both running at the same time, and that got me thinking . . .