I’m making a puzzle piece plaque and you can too!
I received a commission to make an 8″ x 10″ puzzle piece with some text on it.
It was a perfect job for my X-Carve CNC machine.
I designed it using my free Easel account on the Inventables website.
I just shared the project files on their site and you can view them here:
If you would like to go in and modify or play with the design, you can sign up for a free Easel account here: https://www.inventables.com/technologies/easel?ref=fww
If you decide to purchase one of their X-Carve CNC machines, please consider using my affiliate link here: https://www.inventables.com/technologies/x-carve?ref=fww
More details on the actual build are below.
I did a quick Google search and found a free puzzle piece that was already in .svg format. I imported it into my Free Easel account and modified it to make the bottom flat. I added in the requested text and then broke it into 2 separate parts so that I could use a 60° V-Bit for the text and a 1/8″ 2 flute bit to cut out the puzzle shape.
I setup the piece of Birch in my X-Carve CNC machine and carved the text first.
Once that was finished, I cut out the puzzle shape. I tend to run the machine a little slow so each step took about 20 minutes.
It didn’t quite cut all the way through so I used a razor knife and flush trim bit to remove the excess.
I then masked off the letters and gave them a good coat of black spray paint.
I let it dry overnight and through the day on Monday. That night I sanded off the excess paint.
The next step was to break out the router table and give the top of the puzzle piece a 1/4″ round over. I then sanded the whole thing with 120 grit and then 220 grit sandpaper. The side and top cutouts took the longest as I had to sand them by hand.
Once it was sanded to my satisfaction, I built a quick finishing board with screws (does it have a proper name?) to rest the piece on and then gave it a couple of coats of walnut oil.
I gave it a couple of days for the finish to cure and then it was delivered to the customer.