I have the Nomad here and am slowly learning. But I am a newbie. Anyway, my idea at the moment is to make acrylic dies that I would us on my big hydraulic press to form metal into the shape cut into the acrylic die. This is an example of what I would like to achieve with my CNC. I have acrylic and I do have a good selection of endmills. Here is another example. I would like to use this shape (1 of them only) and I would like for it to be rounded in the mold, not necesarily flat in the mold. So the metal shape ones pressed into the mold is in a shell like shape.
You can either use a tool such as MeshCAM which allows you to do depth maps ( http://www.grzsoftware.com/tut/image/ and https://www.shapeoko.com/wiki/index.php/CAM#Images) or model the parts in 3D — very simple shapes might allow you to cut them as a series of nested pockets, but probably not an option.
For the free 3D CAD and CAM options see: https://www.shapeoko.com/wiki/index.php/CAD#3D and https://www.shapeoko.com/wiki/index.php/CAM#3D or see https://www.shapeoko.com/wiki/index.php/Commercial_Software for the commercial options.
I have meshcam and am learning to use it. I have all the programs that came with the machine installed on a PC. I will check out the two links. In the case of the heart, I import it into the program, then what should I do next after that? Thanks!
The heart should probably be touched up in a pixel image editor to have an even surface appearance — remember, you’re going to be mapping a given greyscale value to a given depth of cut.
Thanks Will. I don’t have an unlimited amount of material to mess with so that is my caution with it. But I looked at the tutorial on MeshCAM Day 2 - Image Machining and I have gotten a bit more educated, I really want to have my first success where I do it myself! Thank you again. I will post something once I get there!
It’s best to decide upon / source a free / inexpensive (and easily / quickly machined) material to use for experimentation — I use pallets from work — a little sweat equity after a large equipment delivery got me a shed almost filled with a truckload of lumber which I’ve been cutting up since.
ah good idea. I am in a very poor area so pallets are not an easy find, but I get it. Wood would work, I can get that and they will cut it for me as well. Thanks for the tip!