how does the system account for or factor in waste? For example, if I want to create a sign that is only 3' x 6' and my roll is 54" wide how does the system account for the waste?
When using the layout manager option of the machine the parent size of the material is referenced and used to calculate the amount of waste material. In your example the system would reference the roll width and calculate 11/2 feet x 6 feet of waste (9sq'). It would build in the additional waste material in the cost calculations (if using cost plus pricing) and increase the price accordingly. FYI, waste calculation using layout manager only works for rolled goods and not sheet goods. You can use layout manager for sheet goods but waste is not calculated.