CNC Wedding Plaque for My Daughter

This wedding plaque was created using Designer software from Carvewright CNC.  The photo was taken at her wedding reception by my wife.  I imported the photo and edited it using a combination of blur, quantize and sharpness to get the 3D carve to look like the original picture.  Once the photo was saved, I created a sign blank using various templates in Designer that I liked and outlined the pattern as a cutpath.  This allowed the CNC router to carve the design, then prompt me to change from the 1/16" carving bit to the 1/8" cutting bit to route the plaque out.  Once removed from the machine, I sanded it using a sanding mop 180 grit.  I then used Minwax Classic Oak for the light areas and Minwax Walnut for the dark areas.  The wood is actually pine.  I found that by buying pine stair treads, I get good wood with no knots.  I rip the bullnose off the front on my table saw.  This leaves about 14" x 4' piece of wood perfect for this type of caarving.  Just make sure to get all the fuzz off the wood before staining!  I will be giving this to my beautiful daughter Vanessa and my son-in-law Josh this Christmas.  They haven't seen it and don't know about it.  It will my surprise gift to them!  I wanted to buy a Shopbot CNC to continue making bigger and better projects, but I just can't afford it.  With all the medical bills I have encurred, it just won't be possible.  My wife has severe allergies and can't eat solid food.  And to top if all off, she is extremely allurgic to wood!  She wants to help but I usually wind up having to stop to either treat her or rush her to a hospital emergency room when her throat closes from the wood aroma.  I would like to have a Shopbot so when I retire in 10 years at 65, I already have set up a business to continue an income to help suport my wife and I.  I need the industrial quality of the Shopbot to handle the work load.  The hobby CNC machine is great, but it can't reliably keep up with the work I need to produce to make a profit.  Hopefully, someone will read this and give it some serious consideration.  I work hard and thank God, still have my health.  It would sure be reassuring to know the machine I have can do anything my mind creates!  Thank you, God bless and Merry Christmas.


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    3 Discussions


    7 years ago on Introduction

    I was hoping for a picture of your CNC machine. I am in the process of building a CNC machine myself. Just for doing my own little projects though. I've no plans to make any sort of a business out of it or anything.

    I guess you have one of those Carvewright CNC machines though that looks sort of like a thickness planer.

    If your wife is so sensitive you probably should be looking for something she isn't allergic to for you to work with.

    2 replies

    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    Hello and thanks for the response! After talking it over with her and discussing this with several doctors, we all agreed that we can work together with my woodworking. She will need a more expensive mask for the smells and the dust. Also, she will need gloves to touch the wood until it is sealed and cured. I know this isn't the best way to do things, but it will work. I want to build my own house in 2 years and do all of the fireplace and kitchen ornamental touches with my CNC machine. This means that with all of the bills, I will be forced to build my own cnc machine to handle the work load I will give it. This is a long winded way of saying that we love each and will whatever is called for as I head for retirement in the next decade. I have a deep love of wood working. I can't honestly imagine anyone wanting to help me by awarding me a Shopbot! Not winning will not dampen my spirit. I don't expect to. As my Dad used to always say,"You can have anything you want as long as you are willing to work hard to pay for it!". This philosophy has never let even after his death. All I know is to not ever expect help in any form but to be thankful if it comes.

    As for the machine, it does look like a planer or a giant inkjet printer. It gives a lot of errors and problems every time I use it. It is all I can afford so I am great up I have it. It is still better than the days of not having it!



    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    I've read some about the Craftsman version of your machine. Apparently it cannot accept standard G-Code or something like that. Which limits it to being able to only use the software that comes from the company that makes it?

    Anyhow your machine is substantially different from other CNC machines. It is nice in the fact that you can plug it in and go, but seems to be limited in other ways by its design.

    Shopbots you can plug in and go too, as much as you can with any standard CNC machine. Which is to say that after you plug it in there is still lots to learn, and know in order to actually operate the equipment usefully.

    So nothing is for nothing I guess.

    I have been working on my CNC machine off and on for quite some time now. I want it to augment my woodworking, a pastime I enjoy but I'd hardly say is my great passion. Building my CNC machine has become a quest for me. It doesn't have to be, but how I've gone about it has made it that way.

    Hopefully soon I'll find out if it has all been worth it or not. Sometimes it isn't the destination, but the journey that matters. It'd be nice if when I'm done I end up in a good place though.