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, March 29, 2013

Lasso another

Don's name plaque employs a variety of techniques.  I started with a dome relief, then modified it by adding a raised center. I used an enlarged sandblasted woodgrain bitmap from the TEXTURE MAGIC collection to add a cool texture to the piece.

Then I built a cross section of rope which we would use for a border.

To create the rope I used the extrude command to make a mesh file. I just followed the prompts.

I went into the front view and nudged the mesh vertically until it looked good. Then I selected both the mesh and relief which allowed me to access the menu at would merge the two types of files.

I then created a flat relief of the letter outlines. This relief was modified with a dome shape (to match the woodgrain relief) by using the circle vector I had used to create the relief.

Once gain I went to the front view to nudge the relief vertically and then MERGED HIGHEST to the base relief.

Then I raised the lettering by modifying the base relief.

I thought it looked a little plain and so I imported the splotches bitmap and added a little texture to just the letters.

The file was now ready for tool pathing and then was sent to the MultiCam. It was machined from 1.5" thick 30 lb Precision Board.