Gradual Depth Cut

Is there a way to setup a graduated cut depth for a vector?

Say I have a pattern that is 10"x10", I want it to be fully cut on one end but gradually shallower cuts until it fades on the other end.

You would need to model it in a 3D CAD tool.

Not in any tool that I’m aware of. It would be a nice feature, and I’ve suggested it for Carbide Create.

Depending on the slope you want, you might be able to achieve the effect by mounting the stock at an angle and then cutting it.


Brilliant! I was thinking of making a cutting board with a slope and was scratching my head. I imagine that you could either A) cut some air in the beginning, or B) stepdown toolpaths.

@WillAdams I would have bailed from this forum long ago if not for your generous and patient input. You are a true value to this community.


Fusion 360 has the ability to vary Z-depth through the toolpath in several ways. That being said, I only know it works in theory, because I haven’t done it myself in practice. But you could do 3D adaptive clearing in Fusion.

@WarrantUSN I can think of a few ways, but only 2 seem worth it. (3&4)

  1. In Carbide Create, you could make a bunch of overlapping pockets…ugh.

  2. If it’s just a sloped rectangle, there are guys out there that could “hand” write the gcode.

  3. Inventables Easel can import a “gradient” svg, and cut based on gray level. Basically the same as option 1, but depth is automatic. (Just tried it to be sure…added pic)

  4. Nothing to it in Fusion 360…the way to go for 3D carving.

I will note for option 2 that Grbl only supports a limited subset of G-code, no looping or variables — hand-coding in it is tedious to say the least.

That said, there is a pre-processor which addresses that:

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Brilliant! And makes simple sense. I have several patterned backgrounds that would create a wonderful effect by “fading” the cut.