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, June 20, 2013

Rail plates

The rails for the train require plates and spikes to make them look authentic. These will be glued into place but once finished with the rust paint will look pretty convincing.

 The vectors were pretty easy and all created inside EnRoute.

I created a flat relief with a bevelled edge using the bevel tool by limiting the height.

Then the spike was added using the dome tool. Once again I limited the height to give it a little flat top.

I needed enough pieces to fill a 4'x8' sheet of 1" thick 30 lb Precision Board and EnRoute makes this easy with the duplication tool. I set the spacing to suit the tool size I was using.

There wasn't much detail so I got away with using a 3/8" ball nose bit and an 80% overlap. Some minor tool marks are visible but it's no big deal in this application. Once the tool paths were done I sent it off to the MultiCam.

The two halves of the rails will be glued up and painted. The rail plates will be added on top of each wooden rail tie.

I'll post some pics of the finished product when we are done. Stay tuned...