It’s been a busy few weeks since my last update! With school and extra-curriculars in going in full gear, it’s been hectic to say the least.
Budgets Get the Best of Us
For those of you that read through my last update, you’ll know that we’ve been discussing ordering a CNC router for quite a few months. Unfortunately, through discussions with my admin, I’ve been told that we need to press pause on ordering a CNC due primarily to budget concerns. I’ve been told we will have a better idea of how the budget will look by the end of November, and we can reapproach purchasing one at that time.
While this is also unfortunate for my Learning Project, it certainly doesn’t mean the end of it. As I mentioned in my last update, I tend to obsess over new interests, and CNC routers certainly have me cemented in obsession. The number of forums, videos, reviews, and company websites that I’ve explored over the last few weeks is almost embarrassing to admit. When we get to a point in being able to order one, I know this research will do us well in getting full value for each dollar we spend.
Although I likely will not be able to learn much about CNC routers within our school as I originally envisioned for this project, I’ve come up with a couple alternatives that will help me in getting to the same end goal. I’ve approached two members of our community, both of which currently own a CNC Router, and asked for assistance in learning, and cutting out a few pieces. I’ve been lucky enough that both individuals (a family friend, and a local cabinet maker,) are very willing to have me in and show me some of what they know.
Decisions are Made
Anyone who knows me in real life knows that making a decision is a victory in itself for me. Weighing the pros and cons of a purchase, often with painstaking detail, has become part of my life. That being said, I’m happy to note that I have decided on machines in each price bracket you see below:
$1000-$2500: LongMill by Sienci Labs
$2500-$6000: OneFinity Woodworker/Journeyman
$6000-$10 000: Axiom Iconic Series
I’ve also selected using Fusion 360’s CAM feature in combination with Easel as my software to start out. When budget allows, I will purchase VCarve as an upgrade. Also, as I’ve mentioned before, I am going to stick with Canva to create a “Beginner’s Edition” for CNC routers.
Until I am able to meet with one of my community partners and see the CNC in person, I am ‘stuck,’ with designing. Although I am fairly inexperienced, I love using Fusion 360, and learning about the endless features that are built in within it. Below are a couple views of a basic sign I designed. I plan to test out a cut with this design, and increase the complexity if I achieve success with this. As a bonus, I also learned some rudimentary Adobe Illustrator skills, that assisted me in this project, and will be of great benefit in future projects.
Big thanks to Curtis Norman for letting me borrow his hashtag! I loved it the first time I saw it, and thought it would be a great unofficial slogan for this course. I’d love to hear if you have any suggestions for this sign or other carves. If the first one goes well, and I can line up more time, I’d love to try other things.