Introduction: Breakfast Heroes

Picture of Breakfast Heroes

Here at Other Machine Co., we love breakfast just as much as everyone else. We’ve decided to share our love in miniature form with long-lasting materials: the Mid-Century Modern Morning Meal, if you will. The Breakfast Heroes series is made on the Othermill and consists of a wooden piece of toast with a brass melted-butter insert, a plastic fried egg with a brass egg yolk insert, and an aluminum spatula. We chose durable materials that looked good without having to add paint.

In this tutorial, we walk you step-by-step through making the toast and butter on the Othermill. We provide you the files for the other pieces in the series at the end, since the same principles carry over. Get ready for some double-sided milling, mating different materials together with a press fit, and some finishing techniques. Always start the day off right with a healthy breakfast!

This is an advanced Othermill project. If you’re just getting started, check out our Getting Started guide and Hello World tutorial first.

We’re going to pick materials, set up the mill, prep your wood/toast, cut one side, strategically flip the piece over, and cut the other side. The same process will be repeated for the brass/butter, and then we’ll finish both materials and assemble your toast. Voilà, you made breakfast! This project will be a good challenge, but don’t worry: we’ve got your back. Shall we begin?

Step 1: Tools and Materials

Picture of Tools and Materials

TOOLS

MATERIALS

  • Wood, 1.75"x1.75"x0.875" (aka 7/8" thick = standard size) We used walnut but feel free to use the wood of your choice. Some hardwoods mill easier than others. Check out this guide for handy density ratings.
  • Brass, 4"x4"x0.25"
  • Delrin, white, 4"x5"x0.125" or HDPE, white, 4"x5"x0.375"
  • Aluminum, 6061, 4"x4"x0.040"
  • Necklace hardware of your choice to convert into wearables
  • Permacel double-sided tape, 3/4" wide for the metals
  • Stain or wax for finishing and sealing the wood Mineral oil is fine but tends to stay wet. Avoid olive or nut oils, as they turn rancid. Linseed oil is OK if it's the boiled kind.
  • Super glue (optional) if you want your inserts to stay put permanently
  • Vinegar (optional) for cleaning the brass before sealing
  • Clear coat (optional) for sealing the brass to avoid oxidization

FILES (Dowload from this step.)

  • Wood_Cutout.svg
  • Toast_Is_The_Most.zip (23 toolpath steps for the wooden toast + 8 for the brass butter)

Step 2: Square the Wood

Picture of Square the Wood

A square piece of material (having four right angles) is key for double-sided machining. If the material is not square, your design won't line up when the second side is milled, and features (like rounded edges) will be off. Assume your material isn't perfectly 90º at each corner.

Since the squareness of the wood is so important, we're going to cut the wood down to a perfect size. In this case, the wood will be an actual square shape, and this makes things easier in Otherplan when flipping the material over (x and y are identical).

1. Turn on your Othermill, connect it to your computer, launch Otherplan, and home the machine.

2. Enter the dimensions of your wood piece under Setup Material. Enter the actual thickness for the z, and note you'll ONLY do this for cutting templates for this tutorial.

3. Import the Wood_Cutout.svg file you downloaded from Step 1.

4. Click the Placement button and adjust the location of the template on your wood piece as needed. Increase the y value to move it away from the bottom of the alignment bracket (and increase the x to move it to the right). If your material is large enough, you might be able to get several pieces of toast out of it (sandwich!).

5. Under Parts to Cut, deselect the Engraving button, and Otherplan will show only the Cutout toolpath.

6. Under Tools to Use, remove the 1/32" flat end mill. We want the 1/8" flat end mill.

  • Tip: Extend the tip of the tool enough that it will cut all the way through. When you locate the tool, note the distance between the collet and your material.

7. Click Start Cutting, then OK, and finally Cut.

8. The files for cutting the toast are for a 7/8" (0.875" or 22.23mm) thickness. Don't worry if yours is thicker; you can face it down to the right height in Otherplan. Click on Add Facing Plan, adjust the Facing Depth, and hit Start Cutting.

Note: The brass butter was designed so that the melted portion on top is wider than the insert, so no need to worry about the brass not lining up perfectly when milling the second side.

Step 3: Fixture the Toast Wood

Picture of Fixture the Toast Wood

1. Open up the Setup Materials dialog box and select Birch Plywood and Custom Size.

2. Enter the wood measurements for x and y (1.75" x 1.75" or 44.45mm x 44.45mm).

  • Note: Set your thickness (z) to 0 in Otherplan. It will automatically adjust it to 0.01mm (or 0.0004”). This is because the origin of G-code is located at the bottom of the material. Otherplan assumes the origin to be at the top of the material.

3. Click Continue and then Align to Bracket to ensure the x and y values are correct.

4. Measure the thickness of your tape without the backing. Add this to the z-axis in Otherplan. Our tape is 0.19mm (or 0.007") thick.

5. Now it’s time to secure your material to the bed. Select a vertical edge on the material and draw a line from corner to corner. Because it's a perfect square, it helps to add an x and y on the faces or a 1 and 2 at the origin corners.

6. Apply double-stick tape to the underside of your material.

7. Place your material against the left side of the alignment bracket.

Step 4: Mill the First Side of the Toast

Picture of Mill the First Side of the Toast

Load the toast bottom files (1.1–1.5) you downloaded from Step 1 into Otherplan, select the same tool from the file name, and start cutting. Order matters here, so follow the sequence!

You already have the 1/8" flat end mill ready to go so let's start cutting.

    • 1.1 toast bottom 1/8" flat 2D Pocket rough facing.nc: This will mill a rough depth cut for the back of the toast with the 1/8” flat end mill.
    • 1.2 toast bottom 1/8" flat 2D Pocket finish facing.nc: This will mill a smooth face on the back of the toast with the 1/8" flat end mill.

    Optional: Change the tool to the 1/16" flat end mill and locate the tool in Otherplan. Skip this step if you don't plan on hanging your toast.

    • 1.3 toast bottom 1/16" flat 2D Pocket cut hole (halfway).nc: This will mill the first half (this bit has a short reach) of the hanging hole.

    Change the tool to the 1/16" ball end mill and locate the tool in Otherplan.

    • Optional: 1.4 toast bottom 1/16" ball 3D Scallop hanging hole radius.nc: This will cut a small rounded edge around the 1/16" hanging hole. Skip this step if you don't plan on hanging your toast.
    • 1.5 toast bottom 1/16" ball 3D Ramp outer edge radius.nc: This will cut the rounded edge on the outside of the toast with the 1/16” ball end mill.

    Change the tool to the engraving bit and locate the tool in Otherplan.

    • 1.6 toast bottom engraving bit 3D Projection crust groove.nc: This last step will cut the “crust” line along the inside face of the toast. (After many different tools/paths/depths, a 0.5mm engraving was just right!).

    To ensure proper alignment, make sure all the operations on this side are completed before removing your material.

    Step 5: Flip the Toast

    Picture of Flip the Toast

    1. Flip your wood over along the same axis where you drew the thick line from Step 3. When you're done, the x and y will be flipped on the wood. The same edge will be at the Origin, just the opposite side of it.

    2. Apply double-stick tape to the underside of your material (the side you just cut).

    • Tip: Put some additional tape inside to keep the toast in place after the final cut in the next step. It will keep the toast from dropping through and potentially getting scratched by the tool.

    3. Place your material against the left side of the alignment bracket.

    4. Since we made a square, there's no need to switch the x and y values in Otherplan — they're the same!

    Step 6: Mill the Other Side of the Toast

    Picture of Mill the Other Side of the Toast

    Mill all the operations on the second side:

    Change the tool to the 1/8" flat end mill and locate the tool in Otherplan.

    • 2.1 toast top 1/8" flat 2D Pocket rough facing.nc: This will mill a rough depth cut for the top of the toast.
    • 2.2 toast top 1/8" flat 2D Pocket finish facing.nc: This will mill a smooth face on the top of the toast.
    • 2.3 toast top 1/8" flat 2D Pocket insert hole.nc: This will cut the hole for the brass insert.

    Optional: Change the tool to the 1/16" flat end mill and locate the tool in Otherplan. Skip this step if you don't plan on hanging your toast.

    • 2.4 toast top 1/16" flat 2D Pocket hanging hole (halfway).nc: This will cut the second half of the hanging hole.

    Change the tool to the 1/16" ball end mill and locate the tool in Otherplan.

    • Optional: 2.5 toast top 1/16" ball 3D Scallop hanging hole radius.nc: This will cut a rounded edge on the hanging hole. Skip this step if you don't plan on hanging your toast.
    • 2.6 toast top 1/16" ball 3D Scallop insert radius.nc: This will cut a rounded edge on the insert hole for easier insertion of the brass butter.
    • 2.7 toast top 1/16" ball 3D Ramp outer radius.nc: This will cut the rounded edge on the outside of the toast.

    Change the tool to the engraving bit and locate the tool in Otherplan.

    • 2.8 toast top engraving bit 3D Projection crust groove.nc: This will cut the “crust” line along the inside face of the toast.

    Change the tool back to the 1/8" flat end mill and locate the tool in Otherplan.

    • 2.9 toast top 1/8" flat 2D Contour final cutout.nc: This final step will cut the final outer shape all the way through to release the toast.

    Tip: Make sure all steps are finished before removing your completed model. All kidding aside, this really is your last chance.

    Step 7: Fixture the Brass and Mill the First Side of the Butter

    Picture of Fixture the Brass and Mill the First Side of the Butter

    Repeat Step 3, only this time with the brass.

    Once the brass is secure, mill all the operations on the first side (the underside):

    You already have the 1/8" flat end mill ready to go so let's start cutting.

    • 3.1 butter bottom 1/8" flat 2D Adaptive facing.nc: This will face the underside of the brass insert.
    • 3.2 butter bottom 1/8" flat 2D Pocket underside.nc: This will cut the underside of the melted butter and also the walls of the insert that will keep it snug inside the toast.

    Change the tool to the 1/8" ball end mill and locate the tool in Otherplan.

    • 3.3 butter bottom 1/8" ball 3D Scallop insert radius.nc: This final step will cut a rounded edge on the end of the insert for easier insertion.

    Once again, to ensure proper alignment, make sure all the operations on this side are completed before removing your material.

    Step 8: Flip the Brass and Mill the Other Side of the Butter

    Picture of Flip the Brass and Mill the Other Side of the Butter

    Just as you flipped the toast in Step 5, now do the same for the brass butter.

    Once the brass is secure, mill all the operations on the first side (the underside):

    Change the tool to the 1/8" flat end mill and locate the tool in Otherplan.

    • 4.1 butter top 1/8" flat 2D Pocket top.nc: This will quickly face the brass to the proper depth.
    • 4.2 butter top 1/8" flat 2D Adaptive.nc: This will cut a finer finishing pass on the top of the butter pat.

    Change the tool to the 1/16" ball end mill and locate the tool in Otherplan.

    • 4.4 butter top 1/16" ball 3D Scallop top.nc: This will cut the rounded edge on the top of butter pat.
    • 4.5 butter top 1/16" ball 3D Scallop melted.nc: This will cut the rounded edge around the perimeter of “melted” butter.

    Change the tool back to the 1/8" flat end mill and locate the tool in Otherplan.

    • 4.6 butter top 1/8" flat 2D Contour cutout.nc: This final step will cut the final outline all the way through to release butter.

    Make sure all the steps are finished before removing your completed model. Last chance!

    Step 9: Finishing the Pieces

    Picture of Finishing the Pieces

    To give your milled pieces a more polished look, you may want to employ these finishing techniques. Shown here is the brass butter. The top of the pat and the right side of “melted” portion have had a light Scotch-Brite scouring to show the difference before and after. The second shot shows the underside of the butter pat with its tooling marks. It’s smooth to the touch but the swirling pattern is still visible. This side won't be visible so there's no need to finish it.

    Wood:

    • Some treatment may be needed for the raw edge corners, depending on the grain.
    • Buff the faces and edges lightly with a Scotch-Brite pad (fine steel wool will work too).
    • A butane torch can carefully be applied to further enhance the look before sealing. This is called toasting.
      • Note: Do NOT try toasting after applying any finish!
    • Apply finishing oil or wax to seal against moisture. We used an oil and urethane topcoat sealer.

    Brass:

    • Lightly polish with a Scotch-Brite abrasive pad to remove the tooling marks.
    • If a shinier polish is desired, try a Dremel-style buffing wheel.
    • Since brass will oxidize, clean it with vinegar and spray a clear coat to seal.
    • Try using an old toothbrush and paste toothpaste (non-gel kind) to remove tarnish.

    HDPE:

    • Touch up any sharp edges with a Scotch-Brite pad.

    Step 10: Breakfast Is Served

    Picture of Breakfast Is Served

    Insert the brass butter all the way into the toast. If your press-fit is a bit loose (which could happen if you show off the wonder of your press-fit dozens of times), just add a dab of super glue inside the toast and pop it in — permanently!

    If you milled the optional hole in Steps 4 and 6, now is a good time to affix the ring hardware and chain to your Breakfast Hero so you can wear it with pride!

    What have we learned? A lot! You used the Othermill to cut perfectly square material, did some double-sided machining, press-fit things together without any glue, and made yourself a fine miniature toast that's the talk of the town.

    Now that you've got the hang of the process, you can cook up the fried egg and spatula (the A.B.C., aka Advanced Breakfast Challenge).

    • Im_So_Egg-cited.zip (11 steps: 6 for the egg white, 5 for the brass yolk)
    • Spatch_aluminum_rectangle_cutouts.svg (Cut these in Otherplan first for perfect rectangle blanks!)
    • Spatch!.zip (6 steps, 3 on each side)

    If you have any questions, don't hesitate to contact us at support@othermachine.co. We're always happy to help! And if you do make your own Breakfast Hero, we'd love to see it!

    Comments

    modruftv made it! (author)2016-01-10

    This is great!

    Mrballeng (author)2015-12-08

    This is great! Love the way they came out.

    Mrballeng (author)2015-12-08

    This is great! Love the way they came out.

    Mrballeng (author)2015-12-08

    This is great! Love the way they came out.

    Mrballeng (author)2015-12-08

    This is great! Love the way they came out.

    Cometeer (author)2015-09-09

    Wow....didn't expect them to be so small. Love them! Consider selling these?

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