How to draw a star --- Carbide Create

Andrew: I’m 75 and my eyes are not so good. It wasn’t until I opened your reply again to try working on this star that I noticed you did a very, very kind thing and attached a ready made star for me. I am touched and thankful. I’d like to ask just one more question, if I may. When I opened your attachment I was told that it was made on a newer version of Carbide Create than the one I have. I downloaded my version about two weeks ago, it is a trial version. Is there a newer trial version? Mine is build 474, built of 2020-07-20. Many thanks and blessings.

Hi Mark,

The latest version of Carbide Create is 514 available here:

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Note that Carbide Create runs in 3 modes:

  • Free — this is what is bundled with the machine
  • Trial/Demo — this allows experimenting with 3D modeling, but disable G-Code generation
  • Pro — this is an optional mode which allows 3D modeling and generation of G-Code — we are giving away a free 1 yr. license as noted at:

Andrew: I appreciate the star file you sent, but I also wanted to learn how to make it as well. I’ve attached my file and am wondering if you can take a look and comment on it. In the model mode the simulation looks “so so.” The arm are not a nice straight slop and look more like a sagging slope. When I go into the tool path 3D mode the simulation looks a layered 2D.

HOME MADE STAR.c2d (167.6 KB)

As discussed/shown above, the angles of an even star like that don’t work for the modeling — you need the more acute version to make the angles come out as they ought, but unfortunately Carbide Create doesn’t agree on that, hence my needing to model each step w/ the blend.

The layered appearance is caused by the component being extruded up higher than the stock thickness:

William: I have modified my file to the point that it is acceptable as an experiment that I’d be willing to run, with one exception, the amount of time. I have attached that file and am wondering if you’d take a look at it and tell me if it might be possible to cut down that run time.

HOME MADE STAR.c2d (253.7 KB)

Interesting that you were able to get a 3D carving done w/ a V endmill — I suspect that’s part of the problem.

Note sure the preview is what you want:

Let’s consider something a bit different — hang on, gotta do some drawing.

Okay, what should work is a series of overlapping geometries each of which is assigned an advanced V carving:

(we will clean up the overlapping presently)

but unfortunately, the 3D preview is not correct:

Unfortunately, cleaning up the geometry didn’t resolve the overlapping issues:

And a 3rd party previewer seems to indicate that it is caused by the V endmill being represented as a truncated cone — I believe it would cut correctly.

However, if we reduce the size to be w/in what the selected endmill can cut we get the desired result:


star_redrawn_redux.c2d (173.4 KB)

William: That’s why you are the expert and I am the novice. I changed that and it cut the time down quite a bit. One last question (I hope), I set the V-Cut to feed rate of 90, plunge rate at 30, and pass depth to .4 and I am wondering if I am pushing things or not or what you would recommend.

What material are you cutting with the V endmill?

Did you try the file:


(at this time no one has downloaded it — should cut a bit more crisply than the 3D modeled ball-nose version)

William: No I have not tried it. My workshop temperature is in the teens so I am doing more planning than making. Your file looks much better than mine. I will be working in wood. I note you use tool 251 a 1/4 inch end mill with 2 flutes. I don’t have that tool, but I do have the 250 a 1/4 inch end mill with 3 flutes. Make any difference?

Never heard of the #250 — do you mean #201? If so, the 201 is up-cut and leaves a jagged edge at the top, the #251 is down-cut.

Hi, is there a listing of what the different end mills are somewhere? 201 vs 251 vs 320 vs 322 vs 324 are all listed as 1/4" with no further information. Thanks.


and the specific shop page descriptions, which for the Carbide 3D tooling are linked to from the entries in Carbide Create.

You are correct. I did mean the 201. My bad! Sorry. I have a 3 flute down cut end mill and am guessing it could be substituted for the 2 flute?

Yes, with a suitable adjustment for the chip load.

A post was split to a new topic: Importing files at a given dimension

CC641 (now in beta) adds a Circular Array command which makes this a bit more straight-forward:

Draw a triangle:

Select it and choose “Circular Array”:

set the number of items to 5 and either type in the numbers for the center or press the button “Select Center in Window” and then click in the window to indicate the desired centerpoint:


While the immediate impulse is to just draw the entire star at once:

this results in a self-intersecting geometry which isn’t a good way to draw things — instead, draw parts of the star using a few points at a time so that they overlap:

Then select them all:

and Boolean Union:

arriving at: