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

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Fossil comes to life

This morning I worked up the file in EnRoute for the background panel for the triceratops skull. The MultiCam logo appeared on the bottom of course. It was routed from 30 lb Precision Board and then backed with a piece of 1/2" plywood (for strength) which was about 2" smaller in diameter than the HDU. The raised rectangle area is where the triceratops head mounts to the back piece.

I could hardly wait for the afternoon when our new employee Kirsten would start. She works for us after school. Her task today would be to mix the sculpting epoxy while I had a little fun. I first applied a thin layer over the routed Precision Board, then added a little more where needed. Scrunched up tin foil and a sharpened stick were the tools of choice to create the texture.  I used the photos I had gathered off the internet for reference.  In less than an hour we had the skull half finished and looking pretty fine.
After Kirsten had gone home I fastened the head to the backboard and mounted a hanger. It will make it easier to sculpt tomorrow. I also mounted the blue LED lights under the neck at the base of the skull which will shine on the lettering and give it a wonderful blue glow. The transformer is hidden behind the bone shield above, making future access a breeze. 

Tomorrow we should be able to polish the sculpting off leaving only the paint which will also go quick.