HPGL Vinyl Cutter/Plotter control via serial port

Hi Guys,

A few years back I was given a Vinyl Cutter without any driver software and was able, with a bit of research and code bashing to get Rhino to send files to it directly in HPGL format using a USB to Serial adaptor and a ‘null modem’ connection - via some pretty simple Python Scripts.

I’ve recently done some updates to the code - in particular I’ve removed the com port number from being hard coded in the scripts to being set in an INI file. With USB to serial adaptors the port number can move around from time to time and this make it much easier to change when needed.

The three scripts are attached if anyone else has the same need/want to drive a cutter direct from Rhino.

210703_DK_Plot_Curves.py (4.3 KB)
210703_DK_Get_Plot_Size.py (1.9 KB)
210703_DK_Set_Com_Port.py (564 Bytes)

You will need to use a ‘Null Modem’ version of a USB to Serial for this to work, or a standard USB to serial + a null modem cable/adaptor:

I’m going to try and use the Rhino Script complier next to see if I can turn this into a set of commands/UI/Installer.


OK - so the Rhino Script Complier process was pretty simple - no UI yet - but the commands work:


DK_Plotter.rhp (17 KB)

Two updates:

1/ Have done some work to make this ‘slightly’ more portable with where it stores the INI file.

2/ Got sick of the plotter roaming all over the place while cutting curves in what ever random order they were served up in, now does a simple curve sort based on the area centroid distance from the origin.

New versions of the .PY files and the .RHI installer attached.

210724_DK_Get_Plot_Size.py (2.0 KB)
210724_DK_Plot_Curves.py (4.5 KB)
210724_DK_Set_Com_Port.py (614 Bytes)
DK_Plotter[1].rhp (17.5 KB)

1 Like