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

Friday, February 4, 2011

Safe transport of weird loads.

One of the constant challenges we face is how to support our projects while we work on them and more importantly safely transport them to their final destination without damage. It's something we have to think about from the very start. We've found the safest way to support and transport the pieces is using their final support structure. This is how they will be mounted when they are installed. On larger pieces this support structure is engineered and always overbuilt. The two signs we are currently finishing up are good examples. Both signs have internal welded steel frames. One is mounted from the bottom and the other is to be hung. Those same fasteners will be the way we transport the signs. For the Cliff's Meats sign I welded up a simple temporary frame from some inch and a half square tubing.. It has mounting points on the bottom which we'll lag bolt to the trailer floor for transport. It has no chance of sliding or tipping over that way. The sign may swing a little while it travels but it shouldn't be any more than it will swing in the wind in it's final home. Since our client is picking up the sign here and taking it 300 miles distant the stand will stay with him as it's simply not worth bringing back.

The second Glass Hive sign has a temporary stand bolted to the bottom that's been there since we started the project. It will remain in place while I transport the sign tomorrow. We'll be using a crane to lift the sign into it's final home and while the sign is lifted we'll remove the stand before bolting it onto it's final mounts. This stand has been used on countless projects through the years and has served us well.