Monday, February 17, 2014

Tools of the Trade Tuesday-the ATG...a Love/Hate Relationship

Hello! Hope you're having a terrific Tuesday! I was outside much of today because it looked like this (hum Good Day Sunshine as you look).

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Today, I thought I would share the trials and tribulations I have had with my Advanced Tape Glider by Scotch.

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I waited a long time to get this because I wasn't sure if I would like it.  Would it be too heavy? Too awkward? Is it a piece of crap that I am about to waste $29 on?  I always liked the idea of having a big roll of adhesive that won't run out every 10 min.  So I finally caved in and purchased one with my 40% off JoAnn's coupon.  It was not love at first tape. So much so that I went to Youtube to figure out how to load the everlovin' dispenser.  The instructions that came with it were not nearly visual enough for me and I found them to be infuriating (I have to believe that I'm not the only one that thinks this!) You shouldn't have to be an engineer to figure out how to put tape in a tape dispenser.  Luckily the Youtube video helped but not before I damaged the tape.  The tape roll is so temperamental that if you mess up and use all of the gold feeder tape you are doomed and must suffer until the entire roll runs out.  Talk about unforgiving! Also, I had bent the roll just a little too much apparently and the plastic ring popped out (if the plastic center ring doesn't stick to the inside of the roll...well, just keep reading).

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The refills are too expensive to just chuck and start over again so I patiently waited until the roll had run out. That meant I had to deal with the tape breaking, constant reloading, tape clumping on the paper and rollers/not releasing when I lifted the gun off the paper, and constantly sliding off the rollers.  In other words, I nearly threw the damn thing across the room.  But then, just as my patience had run out and I was beginning to have homicidal thoughts, so did the tape. Finally, time to install a new roll. This time, I took all of the lessons I had learned and carefully, ever so carefully, threaded the tape.

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I highly recommend watching this Youtube video before even opening the package. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oi9oxkAOuHA  There are dozens of videos on how to load this beast.  I chose this one by Charming Custom Crafts because she seems to have the same feelings toward this product. :) Come to think of it, if there are this many videos on how to load a tape gun then I must not be a total idiot.
So, once I figured out what I was doing wrong and what the traps are with this thing, it has worked flawlessly. I reloaded it yesterday for the second time. I noticed that are some nuances to be aware of when using the ATG. 

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And no, that is not my middle finger flipping off the ATG...but it should be. Make sure you release the lever before you lift the roller off of the page or your tape will stick and you will end up with a piece of paper dangling from your gun.  I found that if you lift the gun up at a bit of an angle, you get a clean break from the tape every time.

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To recap:

1. Watch the Youtube video.
2. Don't peel off the gold feeder tape and be careful not to make the center plastic ring come off the roll.
3. When threading through the second wheel, you must hold in the lever.
4. Recheck to make sure you threaded the roll in correctly. Sticky side down, over the first roller, under the second roller, bring around over the roll and to the second wheel.
5. Remember to lock that cap in place on the second wheel by turning it the opposite direction of the arrows.
6. Try not to have homicidal thoughts and/or explosive bouts of rage.
7. If the tape is silent when using, congratulations, you did it correctly and are officially an ATG genius.

I hope if you've been having issues with your ATG, that something I wrote or watching the video helps...or at least, made you giggle.

Thanks for stopping by and remember to stay scrappy!

-Gina & the hounds