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We've recently added Family/Homestead signs to our list of products. These are created with a CNC router on a variety of woods. We have a selection of imagery for the center as seen in the first three images. In this case, a fish was used for the first sign and created in maple. The next two signs are models of the same sign with a bear and horse replacing the fish, respectively. The last sign uses a stacked text technique. The first names of the couple are in the foreground resting above the last name in the background. The wedding date is carved into the background. These elements can be mixed and matched for weddings, homes, graduations, births, etc.
My wife, Reverend Rhonda Schienle, provides custom and themed wedding services. One of her recent weddings had some beautifully painted wooden keepsakes that the guests could sign using paint sharpies. She asked if I could do a version of this with my own spin. I'm more tool-oriented and much less paint-oriented, so I came up with what you see above.
For the first two images, the detail engraving of the names, date and rings is done with a rotary tool called a palm router, which is in between a tiny Dremel and a full-size router. The lettering and artwork was transferred from printer to wood, then carefully routed about 3/16" deep into the top of the circular board using a profiling bit with the palm router. The first background was created using a dimple pattern in the wood with a 90 degree V bit. A new version was made with a flat background using a spiral up-cut bit. The backgrounds are made with a full size router that is better suited to removing larger amounts of material than the palm router.
The wood was stained in a dark walnut and white paint pens were provided for the guests to sign their names on the front. Surprisingly, the couple and guests loved the front as is and they signed the back, instead.
For the last two images, a CNC machine is used to generate the sign. A CNC machine is a computer-controlled router in this case. The information is put into a special software program which operates in two phases. The first phase is for the design, where you lay out the text and graphics much like a typical drawing program. The second phase is for tool selection, where you pick out the router bits, assign speeds and feeds (how fast the router bit spins and how fast the router moves across the wood), depth of cuts, etc., and write those out as programs files. The program files are then loaded into the computer controlling the router, the wood is locked down and the router cuts out the design.