Have you ever won an epic board game night? Have you wanted to showcase that victory on your living room wall? Well, with this instructable, you can build your very own wall mountable board game that will be the envy of your guests and the pride of your family.

The Jist of it.
I am a board game geek and a CNC hobbyist. After many games of Settlers of Catan I decided to put my CNC skills to the test and pay omage to Catan. The board in this instructable is 19 hexagons enclosed by a 6 piece hexagon frame with a sheet metal backing. All the pieces, including the frame pieces have pockets for magnets. Additionally, each frame piece has male-to-female puzzle endings (to lock each piece into each other) and a slot for hanging the assembled boardgame (much like a plaque). The beauty of my design is that the final assembly is never permanent and at any time you can un-mount the board from the wall, re-arrange all of the pieces and have a brand new game!

Did I mention that I carved the wood pieces with my home made CNC Mill and laser engraved the designs with a friend's CNC Laser Machine?

If you like this instructable please vote for it by clicking the orange ribbon in the top right corner of the screen!

What You Will Learn.
These instructions use hexagon shapes. However, with some imagination you can apply these instructions to any design so long as it has a frame. You will learn:
1) Necessary Tools, Materials and Wood Selection for CNC Milling & CNC Laser Engraving
2) Designing for CNC Milling and CNC Laser Engraving
4) A few basic wood working skills
5) Tips for CNC Mill operation.
6) Tips for CNC Laser operation.
7) How to move and setup a project from one machine to another using jigs
8) Basics in oiling wood and clear coating


this is freakin awesome :D

could you share your dxf files? i would love to have this design and maybe change it up a bit for personal preferences (and my cnc limitations)

i am quite able gettings the basic shapes but your design is just gorgeous (do you spell it like that?)

Ulsha1 year ago

Awesome multifunctional art. Beautiful and game night friendly.

sevaz1 year ago
mutrised1 year ago
Dude ! The result is so awesome !
Some ideas for wooden project coming =D
roievil2 years ago
Hi Rob,
Thank you so much for sharing your work !
I was shocked (in the best of ways) when I discovered the technologies you use and also by the quality of the final product.
I wonder if you could give additionnal information on the computer side of the process.

What software do you use to make your plans ?
Is there anything special to know on how to communicate with the CNC machines?

Robert Chlebowski (author)  roievil2 years ago
There are many different types of software packages out there. I used a combination of a few because it made my life easier.

First, decide if you are making 2D or 3D work. If you are making 2D, stick to basic Vector Imaging software like Adobe Illustrator or Corel Draw. This is ideal for laser engraving and cutting basic things on the CNC machine.

Later, you'll need to do something called POST PROCESSESING which is converting your image to G-CODE. Some CNC machines and Laser machines come built in with their own G-CODING meaning, you upload a vector image and the software on the machine will automatically post process the file. Sometimes you'll have to do this yourself. Solid Works/Solid Cam, Virtual Mill, Vectric are all examples of software that can do this. I'm pretty sure they also do 3D modelling.
Absolutely gorgeous work! The amount of detail is stunning. :D
Robert Chlebowski (author)  jessyratfink2 years ago
Hey Jessy
Thanks for the comment! This DIY board is booming wih views. I couldn't help but notice you are the contest manager at Instructables. I haven't received word if my project is elegible for the contest. I'm already at 4500 views not one single person can click vote! :( The suspense jessy! Oh the suspense is killing me!
Will this project make the contest?
Yep! I just approved it. :)

Lots of us tend to take weekends off, so contest moderation can be slightly delayed over the weekends - sorry about that!

Robert Chlebowski (author)  jessyratfink2 years ago
No worries and thank you! P.s, are you guys in California? I can see a diference in time from when I post to when Instructables logged the post.
Yup - we're in San Francisco. :D
CementTruck2 years ago
Got the game as a present 2 yrs ago. Still have not played a full game (lack of interest from other potential players). I've always hated the way the original cardboard parts flop about during game play (and mind you, it was only half a game).

When mounted on the wall it looks like some kind of ancient calendar or glyph. High cool factor.
Robert Chlebowski (author)  CementTruck2 years ago
I was shooting for the 'Old Map" look with the border pieces. Now that you mention it , from afar it does look completely ancient and exotic. Maybe on the next iteration I'll include some symbols or real glyps to boost that cool factor?
MrCruz2 years ago
Absolutely beautiful!

And the wonderful part is that not much extra work would be needed to extend this to the 6 player version.
Robert Chlebowski (author)  MrCruz2 years ago
I was thinking about that. You're right, its not a big step to add on the extra attachments. Once you have your designs done it's just a matter of popping on some material and turning everything on... as well as finding a place to do it!
The Rambler2 years ago
Ward_Nox2 years ago
maks me wish i had a CNC mashine
Stone_UFO2 years ago
Nice work
Just one word - O_O. Okay, not a word, but you are free to interpret it however you like. Thanks for sharing!
SteamCap2 years ago
This is MUCH better than the original game! And you even kept the movable terrain!