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, April 15, 2014

Cookie gets a base

I spent the last two days in meetings with engineers and planners working on the final plans for Skallywag Bay Adventure Park. The project is proceeding and will move from the concept stage through the detailed planning. Today's talk was of the infrastructure and buildings which we will then apply our magic to - when they are done. While that process labors on we will begin the creative work.

Tonight's project was a little more fun. Back in October at our Sculpting Magic Workshop I did the sculpture of Cookie, the head pirate of the eating establishment. Today I would create the routing file for the sign face - at long last.

I first did a quick vector trace of the sign and lettering.

 Then I added borders to the letters using the offset outline tool.

Lastly I added a bent rectangular vector around the sign border and lettering.

The border vector was selected and using the flat relief tool I created a flat relief.

This relief was then modified using dome tool using the bent rectangular vector as a mask.

In the same fashion I created a flat relief of the entering border and then modified it using the bent rectangular shape to dome it up to match the sign background.

The steel bands were then created and modified in similar fashion. These were combined with the sign background reliefs.

Once the bands and sign background was united into one relief I then combined the lettering border with the sign background using the merged highest command.

Then I modified this relief by adding the second raised border.

Lastly the raised and domed lettering was added to the relief.

The sign face was now ready for tool patching and routing from 2" thick - 30 lb Precision Board.

Stay tuned for the next processes on this sign.