For this design I used Corel Draw X4 but any vector graphics package would do (Try InkScape
- It's FREE!). Once you are finished drawing the outline of each part, check the line width and thickness, in particular look for lines that overlap. Now it is time to add some interest to a clever but boring product. I added some vector etching lines to the leg parts, remember to flip one part so that the etching will end up on the outside of both parts when assembled. I also added some vector art to be 'raster' etched on the front of the dock.
You will need to check the file settings for the laser cutting service you are using. This product was made by me ( HiTech Antics
) but I only service Australia, if you are in the United States you could use Ponoko
Each company will have a specific set of rules to set cutting and engraving.
Before going any further, review your design. Visualise the assembly in your mind. Try and make sure that there isn't anything you have forgotten or overlooked. If possible, print the design out 1:1 and cut out each piece, this will give you a good feel for the scale and other things that can't be achieved by staring at the screen. It is also a good time to fill up your sheet with other nick-nacks (like keyrings or jewelry), I added a zombie head, just because!