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 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 of these machines - but I just knew it could do fantastic stuff.

Along with the CNC router I discovered the wonderful material called Precision Board and the glues, primers and other companion products they offer. Since then we have gone through many tons of the material using it in most signs and projects we tackle. This journal will chronicle our many adventures both past, present and future. I'll talk from the perspective of someone who pushes these products to the creative limit on a daily basis. I'll be adding to the stories two or three times each week. -dan

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Slicing and dicing a large sign

A project that's been in production for a while is a large sign for the gable of the Fox and Hounds. It provided some unique challenges - predominantly on account of the many layers and size of the sign. Here's a quick mockup of how it will look when it is up.

We started with a logo I had designed . The vectors were far too complex to create routing files.

All the line work was first to go and then I reduced the fox to a simple outline. This work was done in Illustrator, the same program as I had used to create the logo.

I then imported the vectors into EnRoute and scaled them up to the size we needed.

Then I broke out and duplicated the vectors to create the six layers of the sign.

Then I sliced up each vector to fit on full sheets of Precision Board. 

From here on I'll create a few reliefs for some bits like the lettering and flag background and then tool path the rest as cutouts. The routing didn't take long. Next time I'll be showing how we started gluing it all together. Stay tuned...