Introduction: Laser-cut Wood Marquetry

This video shows a wood marquetry project using Rhino CAD to set up files for laser cutting wood veneer from a photograph.  The inspiration came from photographs I took at an e-waste recycling facility.

-I used Rhino to trace the photograph, then rotated, copied, and nested each individual part within my material work area.

-There are 145 pieces in each section, the first section was mirrored, then the pair of sections rotated 9 times create a total of 18 pie-shaped sections. There are 2,610 shapes in the entire piece. The smallest shape is 1/16” square

-The individual files were laser-cut on a 100 watt laser from 1/16" thick wood veneer.

-The wood parts were assembled using low-tack painters tape on the back, then taped with veneer tape on the front and glued in a vacuum bag using epoxy.

-The framing mat surrounding the artwork is also laser-cut.

The video compresses only 40 minutes of the assembly which actually took around 40 hours; I spent another 40 hours setting up the files for laser cutting and the entire project took about 120 hours.

This instructable is entered in a contest to win a Shopbot CNC router, and votes are most appreciated!  
Click "vote" on the upper right of this page.

If I win the Shopbot, I would use the machine to cut and prototype my folding furniture which can be seen on my website www.christyoates.com




Comments

author
Zinga4 made it! (author)2015-09-21

This project is really amazing, I love it!

author
pablomar33 made it! (author)2012-12-17

holy s***!!! this is amazing!! congratulations dude!!

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tonygrimes made it! (author)2012-05-09

This is wonderful work. How did you handle kerf of the laser? Did you have to expand each piece in CAD to get a snug fit?

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christyoates made it! (author)christyoates2012-05-14

Thank you! Yes, I offset all the parts to eliminate the kerf.

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wide84 made it! (author)2012-02-26

Fantastic work, Christy. I met your aunt (I believe it was) a while back at one of the many Army medical processing events, she passed along your name after I spoke about being an artist myself (designer/sculptor). I'd looked up your website at the time, this must have been while you were studying for your master's. I was impressed then, and I'm doubly impressed now, your work is really evolving, and this latest piece is purely amazing.

If you get a moment, feel free to drop by my site and poke around.

Cheers!

Matt
www.matthewlison.com

author
christyoates made it! (author)christyoates2012-04-03

Oops, sorry I never replied Matt, I haven't been on this site lately. That was probably my Aunt Heidi.Glad you enjoy my work! I visited your website, very cool! Do you use instructables much? I've racked up some "pro Memberships" and would like to share them. If you want one, email me info@christyoates.com and I'll forward the link for the 3-month pro membership. I've already got over two years worth.

author
heyde made it! (author)2011-12-24

Absolutely beautiful. You have true talent.

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christyoates made it! (author)christyoates2011-12-25

Thank you!

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shazni made it! (author)2011-12-25

wow.....this is sooooo awesome! You definitely have my vote :-)
Your site is wonderful...i have never seen such designs before.

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christyoates made it! (author)christyoates2011-12-25

You're very kind, thanks for the vote and the patch!

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Tart2000 made it! (author)2011-12-22

This is ace. The result is awesome.

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christyoates made it! (author)christyoates2011-12-22

Thank you!

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pfred2 made it! (author)2011-12-20

You have a very nice laser cutter.

I think you need to ease off the Diet Coke some. I had to turn the sound off on my PC in order to watch the video too. When you went to the e-trash site did they let you grab as much as you wanted? I'd have backed my pickup truck up and left doing a wheelie! Seeing all of that scrap electronics was quite exciting.

I've been working on building a CNC router for quite some time now off and on. It won't be a ShopBot when I'm done but that's OK. I put articles on this site about some of the electronics I built for it. Most of it is obsolete now because you can buy it pre-assembled so cheaply anymore.

About This Instructable

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Bio: Artist, Woodworker, Laser Marquetarian www.christyoates.com
More by christyoates:Facet Chair- Double-bevel laser marquetryLaser Marquetry from a Digital Wood kitLaser Marquetry from a photo: Kaleidoscope Algorithm
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