We received this question by email from Michelle:
“How do I get SCAL [Sure Cuts A Lot] to work with my Cricut Explore? Is it true that the software is no longer supported?”
Sadly, yes, it is true that Cricut machines are no longer compatible with the latest version of Sure Cuts A Lot.
For those who aren’t aware, Sure Cuts A Lot is a popular software program that was first released back in 2008. It allows craft fans to cut virtually any shape with their electronic cutting machines, including true type fonts, SVGs and more.
SCAL is tremendously popular with those looking to create their own artwork, shapes and decals.
However, the two companies, Provo Craft (owner of Cricut) and Craft Edge (maker of SCAL), have clashed in the past.
Provo took legal action against Craft Edge back in 2011 claiming that SCAL violated their copyright on Cricut Design Studio.
While we don’t know the ins and outs of the relationship, the bottom line is that Sure Cuts A Lot no longer works with Cricut machines.
It does, however, support plenty of other popular vinyl cutters.
Supported machines include:
- BlackCat Cougar and Lynx
- Bosskut Gazelle
- Craftwell eCraft
- Pazzles Inspiration
- Silhouette CAMEO and Portrait
What About Older Versions of SCAL?
Here’s where things aren’t so clear cut.
While the latest versions of the Sure Cuts A Lot software are not directly compatible with Cricut machines, they can still be used in tandem with an older version of the software which is compatible.
The Craft Edge website has a useful tutorial explaining how to cut with Cricut using Version 3/4 of SCAL by sending it to Version 2 of their older software.
This comes with the caveat that Sure Cuts A Lot Version 2 only supports the Cricut Personal, Cricut Expression, Cricut Create and Cricut Cake machines. And you must have a compatible firmware version on your cutter.
If this all sounds a bit complicated… you’re right, it is.
How Can I Have Two Versions of Sure Cuts A Lot?
You may be wondering, as we were, how can I send a design from a new version of SCAL to an older version of the same software?
Won’t the older software be replaced when I install the latest version?
Nope, this is not the case.
There are four versions of Sure Cuts A Lot. Installing a newer version does not overwrite the previous application. It simply creates a second installation.
In theory, you could run Versions 1-4 of SCAL on the same machine.
Can I Export SVGs From Sure Cuts A Lot to Cricut?
If you have the latest machine, the Explore Air, yes you can.
Traditionally, one of the biggest hassles of using a Cricut machine has been the inability to import external content and designs. That changed with Cricut’s Explore Air and the Design Space software.
You can now load in as much third party content as you want via Design Space.
So, while you can’t use SCAL directly with the Explore Air, you can still export SVGs and then upload them in to Cricut’s software.
It’s not a perfect arrangement, but it works.
Here’s a nice video on the interaction between Cricut and Sure Cuts A Lot 4, courtesy of svgcuts:
One thing to note with Cricut Design Space: it’s a cloud-based app, so you must be online to use it.
Do you still use Sure Cuts A Lot? Have you switched to new software and tools?
Let us know your thoughts and suggestions below.