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

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.