View Full Version : Intro + engraving bits

12-29-2003, 06:28 PM
Hello everyone, I've enjoyed this site very much since referred to it. I am a CNC newbie, especially the software side, with the focus being DIY for metalwork.

I have recently finished a bench mill which can be seen at http://www.5bears.com/cnc.htm. It is a 3 axis servo mill using mostly THK linear ways, with some surplus ground ballscrews. I am currently learning the software side with Rhino 3d and Visual Mill 4.0, both products doing very well so far! The mill was designed to be as fast as possible. I've added a KAVO HF spindle, and want to experiment a bit with engraving.

2 Quickie questions... first, when using TT fonts within Rhino, the letters always seem to create closed regions, if you get my drift. In other words, a capital "T" would come up with 8 straight line movements to form the letter, whereas for very small, simple engraving, I'd like to draw the "T" with one vertical, one horizontal movement. Does this make sense? Is there any way to get around this?

Secondly, is there an online source for 1/8" shank carbide engraving cutters in various configurations? I've tried making my own and it is really labor intensive to get a good cutter, I'd just as soon buy a few.

I hope to experiment with some HSM with this little mill, as soon as I get my Rhino knowledge up to speed. The mill will do 250 ipm+ which is kind of a goof on an X axis travel of 10". The KAVO will spin 50,000 RPM, and should have the power necessary for the small parts I plan on creating.

Thanks to all for an informative site, I hope I can contribute something.


12-29-2003, 06:43 PM

www.precisecut.com seems to have the kind of bits you want.


12-29-2003, 06:46 PM
Here's another


12-29-2003, 07:17 PM
Nice machine.

The only way I know of to make "single line fonts" is to use the shx fonts included with autocad. These were made for pen plotters.


12-29-2003, 08:24 PM
Thanks Buscht. Those are exactly what I was looking for! I tried modifying a #1 center drill for some experiments but the cut was very ragged.

Eric, thanks for the hint. I'll see if I can find a plotter font within QuickCAD, since I'm too cheap for AutoCAD. I'm looking to do some very small engraving, with letters from 1/8" to 3/16" tall. Kinda like what you'd see with a set of metal stamps except done via CNC.

02-02-2004, 09:51 PM
Here's another link for engraving tools. You might also try a local tool & cutter grinder. Since engraving tools are simple you may find custom made points relatively inexpensive.

02-07-2004, 02:28 PM
Can you import fonts to Rhino? I imported about 500 fonts to windows, and my CAD/CAM picked up the fonts with no problem. I may have the font you are looking for if you have not already found it.

Engraving bits!? and I have been using 1/16 and 1/32 ball end mills to do the job. DOH!


02-07-2004, 04:47 PM
I use Rhino and VM5 . In VM 5 you can do v carved text . If you create the text in rhino then export it to VM5 and then create a tool to represent your engraving bit angle . Then using the engraving MOP select the " to condition " --This will vary the depth of the z and keep the center of the tool in the center of the font ,and the edges at the outside . ---There was aproplem with excessive transfer moves , but I think that it has been fixed in sp3 . The other less expensive program that will do this is called Vfontz sold by IMservice----I really enjoyed your site by the way . --Nice machine