Table of Contents
This page is the central documentation site for GkDraw Robot from GKTOOLS®
1. Introduction to the GkDraw
2. Getting started with GKDraw: Essential documentation
3. General Usage
3.1 Pen choices for GKDraw
The pen holder on the fits pens up to ⅝ inch (16 mm) in diameter. The maximum recommended pen weight is 1.6 oz (45 g). The design is such that the pen rests on the surface by its own weight. That allows it to ride over surfaces that are textured or otherwise uneven, however it also means that the pen holder does not apply significant downward pressure.
Good choices for pens to use include fountain pens, permanent markers, liquid-ink rollerball pens, technical pens, automatic pencils (particularly with soft lead), small-bodied whiteboard markers and other writing and drawing instruments that do not require significant downward pressure.
While we will refer to writing and drawing instruments as “pens” to be concise, other instruments such as chalk, charcoal, and brushes can also work well in many cases.
Felt-tipped permanent markers look good and colorful, but have a disadvantage in that their tip is made of soft fiber, that will wear down. We have found that felt-tip permanent markers have a surprisingly short life when writing on (for example) cardboard boxes, because the tip tends to wear down. Metal-tipped pens, such as fountain pens, roller balls, and technical pens will have a much longer life. (Not infinite, but lasting a remarkably long time.)
To increase the longevity of your pens, reduce the amount of pressure, write on smoother surfaces, and write at more gentle speeds. One way to reduce the amount of pressure applied is to leave the cap of your pen off when you are writing.
3.3 Fountain pens that we have enjoyed using with the GKDraw
Most fountain pens work very well in the GKDraw. If you haven't used fountain pens before, you might want to look at this guide from Jet Pens that talks amount their basic usage.
3.4 Some liquid-ink roller ball pens that we have enjoyed using with the GKDraw
Lamy Safari, with medium or fine nib. We really can't say enough about how good this pen is– and it works wonderfully in the GKDraw. Extraordinarily consistent ink flow at a variety of speeds; never seems to jam or clog. With blue ink, really shouts “this was written with a fountain pen.” The Lamy tips are somewhat broader than those from other manufacturers. The extra-fine tip is comparable in width to the Pilot with medium nib.
3.5 Ballpoint pens that we have enjoyed using with the GKDraw
Pilot Metropolitan, medium nib. Also readily available, with a clean neat line. After spending many hours writing demo files with this and the Lamy, we find that the Pilot is excellent, but very slightly less reliable in terms of consistent ink flow. We tend to see slightly more variation in ink flow as a function of writing speed – an artifact that occurs when writing by hand as well. Seems to “dry out” a little more readily than we would like.
4. Project example
- Download the basic GKDraw demo and example set here
- This set of files contains the “GKDraw_First.svg” demo from the “making your first plot” section of the user guide, along with a few other examples from the GKDraw product page and video.
- This set of files will be updated from time to time.
- If you have example files that you would like to contribute to our example set, please contact us.
4.1 Text outline
4.2 Text fill
4.3 Single line text
4.5 Image outline
4.6 Image fill
4.8 Squiggle Draw