Engraving Script Fonts using Vee Carving

I have a Nomad, and am attempting to engrave some script fonts using a vee bit. I am a jeweler, so my work and the size of the font is fairly small. Here is my issue: I can get it to engrave, but as with many script fonts, there are parts that are narrow and parts that are thicker in each letter . My Nomad is engraving the entire letter as one thickness. What am I doing wrong???

You should use a V carve toolpath, that will allow more and finer detailing.

You may find that it’s worth investing in Vectric VCarve Desktop.

Hmmmm. I am using a V carve toolpath. I looked into the Vectric but I us a Mac.

I am using the feed and plunge rates suggested by the bit manufacturer. They are .005 dpp, 12" feed and 5" plunge. If the feeds are this fast, is it not giving the machine enough time to vary the depth to create differences in the width of the lines?? If so I could slow down the feed and decrease the plunge, if that might help?

What kind of bit is this? Is it a D type engraving bit? These really don’t work well for v-carving, especially with metals. Are you using single stroke script fonts, or truetype fonts? At really small sizes, single stroke fonts work a lot better with metal, and in particular with a D type v-bit. F-engrave does a great job with creating a toolpath for single stroke fonts. CC is ok with v-carving signs and such, but with tiny stuff on metal, really doesn’t do so well.

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Hi Will,
I am seriously considering the Vectric VCarve Desktop as you suggested. I installed Parallels desktop on my Mac so that I can run it. It appears that I have to use a “post processor” to be able to use the g-code in Carbide Motion. Could you please explain what this is, and what it entails?? Thank you!

A post-processor is a small piece of software which determines how the G-Code is exported from the software.

Vectric has included a post-processor for Grbl since v8.5

The community has notes on post-processor availability at: https://www.shapeoko.com/wiki/index.php/Commercial_Software#2.5D_CAM

Excellent. Do I choose the Shapeoko option in vectrc VCarve? And, will this accommodate for multiple cuts with multiple tools like Carbide Create can but prompting to change the tool, automatically measuring, and then finishing the job?

I believe one of the 3rd party, Nomad-specific post-processors from: https://www.shapeoko.com/wiki/index.php/Commercial_Software#2.5D_CAM will address this.

I use: https://www.shapeoko.com/wiki/index.php/File:Carbide3D-Nomad-Inch.pp.txt

Perfect. With that said, how do I install this as it is a text file? It will not download, and it just opens in a new page in my brower?? Also–when I installed parallels desktop, I can install any windows program and get it to run==EXCEPT for Carbide Motion. I do have Motion installed as the Mac version. Can I use VCarve in Windows, save as an .nc file, and then load the Motion and connect through the Nomad through the Mac side of the computer, and load the .nc file to cut, or do I need to figure out a way to load the PC version into Parallels??? This is all a LOT more confusing than I thought it would be!!

Go to: https://www.shapeoko.com/wiki/index.php/File:Carbide3D-Nomad-Inch.pp.txt

Right-click on the link: https://www.shapeoko.com/wiki/images/a/a7/Carbide3D-Nomad-Inch.pp.txt and choose “Save Target As” (or nearest equivalent.

Yes, you can generate G-Code in Windows, save as a file, then send using Carbide Motion running on a Mac.

Thank you so much for your help. Do I save it as a .pp extension, and take off the .txt at the end??

Yes, the file will need to be renamed and placed in the correct folder as noted in the instructions on the linked post from the wiki.

Okay, I am missing something, completely. Which tutorial do I follow? It is showing up in the Vectric folder as a .txt and not a .pp!

Okay, disregard that, I think I figured out how to change it to a .pp file I put it in the “myPP” folder, and now it is the only PP showing up. Hopefully that means I did it correctly!

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I use Carbide Create to create my tool paths.(I too have a Mac and CC works so well on it). I use a single flute (D) cutter and contour as a cutting method. This way I can choose a left, right, or no offset and depth of cut. Each of these produces a slightly different result with amazing detail. I use it to make tiny signs for model railroad layouts, HO and N scale. Try it.


Hi! I also am a Jeweler with the Nomad, I am super new. I would love to see an example of what you have done. I am feeling so stumped and want to make things for my hydraulic press so I can use them as dies for now. And cut out custom name plates and items to enamel. I would love to see something from you! Thank you! Laura

Hi Laura, I will post some things once I get it all figured out and am happy with the results. I did buy Vectric VCarve, and it creates a more efficient gcode, and I am still ironing things out. With that said, I also have a hydraulic press, but I am hoping to mill my pieces directly on the machine and no longer use dies. It is much more efficient, for sure, and one less step–plus they are much easier to clean up. Dies need to be VERY tight to work, and I’m not sure it would be possible to make the cuts necessary to create them?? You might want to contact Dar Shelton (www.sheltech.com)–he is super nice, and I know he hand saws his dies with a very thin blade so that they die is extremely tight. I would also like to do nameplates, etc! Hope you are having fun with your machine!

I will definitely try this! What is the diameter of the single flute cutter you are using??

HA! Dar made me my Pegasus cutter that he has posted here and there. Yes I am planning on doing my own Pancake dies as well, I have the RT system that I found on ebay, Dar told me I would hate the thing but hey it does work. I just wish the Nomad was as easy to use I am very frustrated at the moment, as I can’t seem to do anything right with it. hehe, I won’t give up though either. No fun yet, but it should be fun soon, I hope. Great to hear from a fellow jeweler!