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

Sunday, July 30, 2017

Metalwork fun

More than a dozen years ago we decided to build a fifteen inch gauge railroad around our yard. Every grampa should have a model train to share with their grand kids... and mine would be big enough to ride in. I started work on the project before our fist grandchild was born. There was a small engine, some railcars and an inspection vehicle. This little vehicle would be gas powered.

I designed up the car which resembled a narrow model T with a side car. I wanted something really different and so it had only three wheels - which seemed like a great idea at the time. The truth is I actually outsmarted myself. When I finally got it rolling and tested it on the track which we had laid down the driveway  it worked great - until we came to the first corner. Then it derailed. It was time to go back to the drawing board! The project languished for many years as we tackled a thousand other projects.

This year I am determined to get the train going at long last. Phoebe, our first grand child is now twelve years old, Juniper, is one and a half and another is on the way soon.

So I built a new frame - this time with four wheels. I cut the old truck apart and welded it to the new frame. Once I had a good idea of how it would look I started work on the design of all the details.

I decided it would have fenders and a box this time around - complete with working tailgate to allow access to the motor. The motor is actually to be in the truck bed and so I am going to enclose the hood sides. This will allow me to open up the firewall to give me a little more leg room inside the cab. This evening I spent a little time in EnRoute designing the cutting files for all of the remaining metal work. It is going to be all welded steel with no bondo. We'll let it rust naturally and perhaps add a little weathered paint for a splash of color.