It is hard to believe that it was almost ten years ago I witnessed a CNC router in action for the very first time. I was fascinated with what I saw 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 and LOTS of hands-on practice I quickly found out that my MultiCam router was capable of just about anything imaginable.This journal will chronicle that journey to date and continue each week with two or three entries as I continue to explore just what is possible with this wonderful tool... -dan

Thursday, March 2, 2017

Creating the Flutterbye sign

Like all of our signs the Flutterbye sign began with an idea and a sketch. At this point I'm not concerned very much about scale or details. The concept drawing helps me work out how we will build the project and also helps the customer visualize what they are getting. And as always the concept drawing is a way to up sell the project. Once the customer falls in love with the concept we can get down to brass tacks.

With the project and budget approved and the deposit in hand it is time to get to work. I used the original sketch as a starting point to trace out the vectors. The customer also needed to use this artwork in the creation of the rule signs and advertising for the project. These vectors were imported into EnRoute to create the routing files.

There were to be three layers to the sign. The front layer would have raised dome lettering. The middle layer would be a simple cutout with a slot machined into the piece to accommodate the structural steel support. The back piece was a simple flat cutout.

To build the file I first created a flat relief.

Then I modified this relief by adding the domed lettering.

As simple as that the sign was ready to be tool pathed and sent to the MultiCam.

We cut the sign from 30 lb Precision Board. It took about an hour and a half to cut. All three pieces were cut from 1.5" thick board.