What text method for editing spacing and export for vinyl cutting etc?

How do I create black text with text object tool ?

also how do I alter ‘tracking’ , font term for spacing of characters.

After its been created it seems its unintelligent, selecting it sees no properties box to alter height or tracking etc.

No means of editing it.
If I use the Dimensions>Text Block command there is no control at all over tracking (spacing of characters), or line spacing. Typing out one word its a bit longer than I need to match original.

How do I get this to be suitable for vinyl cutting ? If I explode it the characters dont retain their shape, I get an E with a triangle for one arm etc.

What is best tool to recreate text then be able to export it along with curves to get a pdf or eps made for vinyl cutting purposes or get a decal made ?

I am recreating a logo for such along with creating from scratch an extinct font for marking up an aircraft with stencilling, sizing images up to my aircraft model etc to establish size, logo has been supplied as jpg and needs refining.


Text Object creates an object - curve, surface or solid depending on your choice.
Text creates text.

Rhino is not a publishing or illustration program so kerning and tracking you’ll have to do manually. Note that most graphic artists manually kern text for logos anyway to get the right feel that auto-kerning often doesn’t get right.

So, to answer your question.
Use the Text command.
Kern manually.
Export as .ai or .eps for the cutter


Hi, taking that latter route, but explode wrecks the letters, E becomes an F with a triangle for the upper arm etc.
and worse…

see attached
Futura, then select bold and 4mm, ok it then explode it and …sheeeesh :frowning:
Futura Bold 4mm mess when explode.3dm (85.5 KB)


Hi @Steve1

Something must be wrog with either your Rhino install or your Futura font - explodes without any problems here (The one on top)

HTH, Jakob


I have typed this out in also V4, same issues, then tests show font file type issues.

I have True Type fonts and Type 1 fonts, as any graphics PC has, or used to have, having been doing such for 30 yrs.

The Type 1 fonts do not Explode correctly.

Both are to be found in C:\Windows\Fonts

This is a win7 64bit pro pc.

In fonts folder there is Open Type, Type 1 and True Type as font types. I see when opening up an Open Type and right click properties the font it says True Type !

Wikipedia for the .pfm says it is paired with a .pfb which might be in a PSFONTS folder if not in same folder as the pfm.

I dont have a PSFONTS folder, I used to on my win98 pc, not so sure on the XP.
searching on *.pfb I see just a few and certainky not enough to pair with my Type 1 fonts I have, pfb are at
C:\Program Files (x86)\Common Files\Adobe\PDFL\8.0\Fonts

see attached done in V4.

Can you type me out THE QUICK BROWN FOX ETC ETC in Futura and upload as a 3dm for V5,lets see if its my Rhino, or my font.

V4 tests attached. Can be sure it will be as such in V5 !..and it is.

Font explode issues suss.3dm (572.4 KB)

and here is a test in V5
Font explode issues suss v5.3dm (500.7 KB)


Type1 fonts have some issues with the way the splines are defined (not sure of the details).

If I explode an old Type1 version of Futura I get the same problem you are getting.

My Open type and true type versions of Futura behave just fine. So that’s the solution

thank god for that ! its a rhino thing, not my pc.

on the other hand , oh cripes.

I have artworks using the type 1, so if I acquire true type Futura and install when pc already displays Futura in the text drop down lists, its going to cause issues, its not a done thing to have both types of font same name etc etc installed onto a pc, you can have truetype or type 1, am I right ?

remembering back to early days of font buying and install here…

So what do I do ?

I am faced with having to hand draw all my exploded text for my immediate job. not fair :frowning:

I have such popular fonts as Helvetica 65 and 45 as well as loads more as Type 1, for they were the pedigree fonts to have, and if I remove them , then my work in other progs that features them will fall over, might not even open ?

needs a rhino fix, tail must not wag the dog.


Nope! Settle down and take a chill pill. You can have Type1 and TT versions of a font on your system at the same time without a problem.

Also it sounds like you have a ton of text to deal with. So why not do it in Illustrator or a similar program which is designed for just that sort of thing? Adobe Illustrator also deals with Adobe Type1 fonts perfectly (which should come as no surprise). Or Corel Draw is the weapon of choice for most vinyl sign shops.

A quick word of warning about OLD versions of Illustrator (prior to V10 I think). The way they handled compound paths was peculiar back then and hence no good for NC cutting.

in the font drop down list how does one know you are choosing the Futura Type 1 versus the True type ?

I am scaling up and mapping my pics to my aircraft CAD 3D object, then drawing overvthe result to create the a/c maintenance markings aka stencils, to try and take this across to AI to use it would be tricky, especially as I havent ever used AI.
Adobe Illustrator I have scant need for normally, to run it is subscription mode nowadays so paying for something I rarely use, permanently, like a hole in my wallet. Brought up on Freehand, Illustrator was disliked by Freehand users as it was 20% slower, we could do in one command what it took a few different menus to do, Corel was lacking, used to sit in with a corel user and glad to leave it and have Freehand as my day tool, . But now I find cut commands etc poor, wish to use the intelligence of CAD, wonder how I coped !

I suddenly found myself doing a load of text, stop and i fail, so to buy and learn adobe when i was working till 3am most nights was no go.


If it helps, its possible to create sets of fonts that are installed/unistalled by a font manager like http://www.ampsoft.net/utilities/FontViewer.php (free)… make a set with TT only and another with Type 1 only so you are never in doubt regardless of the application you are using.

You can convert Type 1 fonts to TrueType with this https://fontforge.github.io/en-US/ (also free). I have not used this extensively myself, but if it works like Fontographer (remember that Macromedia app?) you may be able to avoid having to buy TT versions. Of course, if the Type 1 font is bad to start, and there are bad ones, it won’t fix it.