It is hard to believe that it was only seven years ago I witnessed a CNC router in action for the very first time. I was fascinated and simply had to have one! Although I had been in the creative end of the three dimensional sign business for most of my life I didn't really know what I would do with one - but I just knew it could do fantastic stuff.

Through extensive research I quickly found out that with the relative simplicity of EnRoute, CNC routers were capable of just about anything imaginable. This journal will chronicle that journey to date and continue each week with two or three entries as we continue to explore just what is possible with this wonderful software... -dan

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Finishing the prefabrication...

As always, we started with our base coats using a top quality acrylic paint - all brushed on by hand. I planned the painting process to make it as easy as possible... just as I had when I was fabricating. It is a lot easier to cut painted edges to a corner or raised edge. By designing with painting in mind it speeds up the process greatly. I was also mindful of light and shadows as I designed. Nothing showcases dimension better than light and shadows.
Once the base coats were on we mixed up a custom glaze called 'grime' to age the pumps instantly. The car was done in the same fashion. The glazes instantly tied all the colors together. These pumps and the car looked like they had been around and in use since the 1930's. They would also fit seamlessly into the facility we had built more than six years ago.
Loading the pieces was easy for this too had been kept in mind since the planning stage. I had welded threaded nuts into the car to screw in eye bolts for lifting and to fasten the load onto the trailer. To load the pieces onto my trailer I used our overhead lifting beam in the shop and then backed the trailer under the elevated pieces. Once the features were safely onsite the eye bolts were simply unscrewed and the piece was ready to go.
Before we knew it the time had come to deliver the pieces... always an exciting day at our shop. Driving down the road was an adventure. Every stop we were surrounded in an instant with lots of questions about what it was for, where was it going and even of they could pose for a picture or two beside the imaginative load.
The trip was uneventful and my client was all smiles as we pulled up. He had a machine waiting to help unload and the pieces were in place in minutes. I would return to do the finishing touches when they had the building constructed around the pieces we had done.
Stay tuned for the final installment...