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Thread: What kind of file extension for image to be engraved into wood?

  1. #13
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    Thanks for the images posted as this makes a huge difference in commenting. Considering those images I really don’t think you want to be using any sort of bit mapped software for “originals”.

    What you want here is vector based art work at the minimum. A 3D solid molded might have some advantages but a 2D CAD file would also work.

    Quote Originally Posted by JohnnyScience View Post
    Thanks for the responses, I apologize for the delay.

    So most of what I want are images that I have as jpeg that are either 1600x1600 or 3500x3500 pixels

    They range from basic, to a bit more detailed on a few.

    What do you guys think?

    The last one titled Christen lamen is the most detailed, but on average it's the basic line drawings
    Yes it is the fact they are basic line drawings that suggest moving to a vector based image would be a good idea. It would be a bad idea to try to stretch or compress any bit map and expect good results. Scaling algorithms have gotten much better but there is a real limit and exceeding those limits can lead to artifacts in your image.

    Some of your images might be suitable for parametric modeling where one file defines the shap and allows scaling to fit the various board sizes you want to engrave. On the other hand a good CAD program or a vector based drawing program will let you reproduce these rather fast. There are a number of free 2D CAD capable apps online, I’d look at one of these to generate your drawings in.
    I'm looking to have them engraved on wood panels 20x20 inches

    Will I get high quality engraving from these images once converted for CNC?
    That depends on many factors, in general you will be far better off generating CAD (vector) drawings for this artwork. This especially if we are talking any sort of production
    Also, are the vector images I'm used to associating with photoshop the same kind that are used for CNC? If so I could have someone convert them for me and then just need to find someone to convert them to the proper CNC file
    Photo shop does bitmaps, at least to the best of my knowledge as I’ve never used Photoshop. There are better online descriptions of the differences between vector based images and bitmaps than I can reproduce here. In simple terms though vector based images are formed from a set of instructions that are used to draw an image. Vector based drawings can be precise.

    As for the conversion it would really pay to learn to do this yourself. A couple of reasons here, one is that the images are simple and a good place to learn CAD. Another reason is that you may need to tweak the files to get the results you want in wood. The big problem is the sharp angles that may be hard to reproduce with the tooling you may be using. This is likely why the laxer suggestion was made above. In any event the tooling you use wil likely impact how some of those corners will look. Sometimes you can tweak the drawings to improve the the result in hard materials other times you will need different tooling. In other words it may be a bit difficult to reproduce some of those very sharp angles in a way that you like on a router. Depth of cut and cutter design all impact how the images will be reproduced in wood.



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    Default Re: What kind of file extension for image to be engraved into wood?

    Ok roger all of that, I will have my required images converted to vector as my next step.

    My only issue with lasers is that it leaves a burned look and it engraves the image itself, where I want to mill/carve out the area AROUND the image so the image itself becomes a 3D image.

    I don't have any of the tools to do this myself, so I would working with a professional shop that would have whatever tools would be required to get me the highest quality results in the end.

    I'm looking for the images to be milled/carved out of the wood like they do in this video:



    So you think this technique won't be able to do the sharp images that are found in my examples? Everything I've seen carved out this way seems to come out amazing.

    Btw, this is for a 1 off project for myself, I don't have any plans to go into production. (at least not at the moment)

    But either way I want the end result to be the highest quality possible.

    I found scan2cad.com and was going to give a try myself to convert into vectors. The website says the software is super easy to use and free for 14 days, which is plenty of time for me to convert all of the images I want.

    They say once you convert to a vector you then have the option to save it in G-code format and Scan2CAD supports .NC, .CNC and .TAP

    Which file extension would be best for me to save the G-code vector?



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    Default Re: What kind of file extension for image to be engraved into wood?

    I think I understand what your trying to do. One thing to realize if you show this video to most people they will assume you need a 3d model. You can still take your vector image and reverse it (so on the screen it will look like a white drawing on a black background, the black will be your vector drawing).

    The other thing to realize is that if you are going to hire someone to do this, its going to take a long time. The level of detail in the video was quite high, and it looks like it was about 1 foot square. He also sped up the video quite a bit. My machine is pretty fast and I would guess it would take about 4 hours to do that on my machine, at that level of detail. The numbers I hear most often are around $200 per hour in my area (upstate NY). So that Pegasus would run about $800. You should check around a bit and talk to a shop, they most likely have all of the skills, or can direct you to the people who have the skills to do what you want. But remember your asking for a professional product from professionals so expect to pay accordingly. If you know an amateur who can do it, you'll have to be flexible on what you expect.



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    Default Re: What kind of file extension for image to be engraved into wood?

    Scan2CAD is just going to cut on the lines. And I suspect that the vector conversion will not be very good. For high quality cuts, you really need to properly redraw those in a CAD program.
    The extension is just referring to the file name extension. The files will all be exactly the same. Different control programs may require a specific extension, but most can read any extension. You can always rename the file to change the extension at any time.

    If you want to convert them into 3D carvings, it's a fair bit more complicated. There's no magic "Make 3D" button. You can either actually create a 3D model, or use other techniques to remove the material between the vectors, like pocketing or V Carving.

    Gerry

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    Default Re: What kind of file extension for image to be engraved into wood?

    I personally would draw it up as others have said in a program that uses vectors. My personal preference is AI just because I've been using it going back to cs3. Once you get the vector art, you need to talk to whomever you are using for the CNC work and ask them what format they want. Depending on the cad and cam software they use it will vary. For example you could send me a AI file a dxf file or if you didn't want to deal with it the jpeg would be fine and I would just redraw it. I would suggest calling around to different shops and talking to the guys who are quoting the job for you. Asking on a forum isn't going to do much for you except waist your time and energy. I say this because you aren't the one cutting the parts and different shops capabilities vary.

    Dan



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    Default Re: What kind of file extension for image to be engraved into wood?

    Have a look at "bmp2cnc" from MR-Soft Nc Software Tools

    This generates a G-code file using images to create a 3-d carving.



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    Default Re: What kind of file extension for image to be engraved into wood?

    Hi Johnny - If its a one off then you just need to take the design to a router company and they will sort it for you. They will have everything needed to do the carving. Peter



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    Default Re: What kind of file extension for image to be engraved into wood?

    Since its a function I haven't explored,I tried something similar at the weekend.Rather than a scenic image I used the badge of the Ferrari racing team and let LinuxCNC determine the toolpath.I did begin by converting the image to greyscale for simplicity.I may experiment a bit further at some stage when I have time and inclination;it does take time because the finer the desired resolution happens to be,the longer the job takes.I feel sure that there are other programs that will work but for free control software I can't complain.A full 3D CAD model and a CAM program that permits the use of machining boundaries to constrain the travel of small tools for detail finishing would be much better and a lot more costly.

    I did take a look at virtualsfm a few months ago for creating a 3D mesh from photographs.It didn't work for me unfortunately but there are some youtube videos that look quite positive.

    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails What kind of file extension for image to be engraved into wood?-ferrari-jpg  


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What kind of file extension for image to be engraved into wood?

What kind of file extension for image to be engraved into wood?