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

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Special delivery

The folks at Coastal Enterprises (Precision Board) needed a new display for the trade show coming soon. They had seen the latest article in SignCraft featuring the Kel-Mor dump truck and wanted something like that - only much smaller. I sent them a picture of a small sample sign I had done and they asked me to do a similar concept drawing.

The concept showed a small flatbed truck with Precision Board samples stacked on the back. We had an instant GO!

As I worked up the vectors for the piece I decided to make it a tandem truck. The first job was to create the ten wheels I needed. As a bonus I added the company name to the tire sidewalls.

The tires were a simple donut created by using the dome tool.

Next up were the wheel centers. After first creating a flat relief I dished these down using the dome tool once more.

The I created the rim edge as a separate flat relief.

The raised lettering was the next order of business, created by modifying the tire relief by ADDING TO.

Then I created a zero height relief and merged highest all of the pieces to this relief.

I then added the wheel center using the dome tool.

The wheel slots were created as zero height reliefs and then MERGED LOWEST to the wheel assembly.

The truck vectors were then designed around the wheels to get the proportion correct. I used these vectors to build the reliefs and to cut out the many pieces of Precision Board we would need for the assembly. I then sent the files to the MultiCam and in short order we had all of the pieces we would need for this project.

In the next day or so I'll be gluing it all together. Then the hand work can begin. Stay tuned...