Workshop Sign - First Cut

My first cut right after cutting the sled was a pretty ambitious workshop sign in 3/4" ply with a 1/4" straight bit using easel.
I learned a lot:

  • Check the speed of your spindle on the router and set it to lowest setting
  • check that the bearings are sitting properly on the ring and all screws are well nutted
  • Put the router and vac on a different circuit than the electronics (computer, arduino, shield)
  • Put the router and vac on a dedicated circuit
  • how to use wood putty
  • How to use Easel and Ground Control
  • Seal the sign before painting, so it’s easier to sand off paint later
  • 60grit sandpaper is just fine
  • A ‘multitool’ is useful for cutting tabs and sanding pockets
  • Pockets in signs really don’t need to be all that deep
  • ear cans are convenient and necessary
  • There is a lot to learn about CNC cutting and carving
  • Maslow CNC is an amazing machine


That is awesome! If that’s your first cut I can’t wait to see what else you come up with! :sunglasses:


That is a fantastic first project!

Good idea to have a pre-flight checklist stuck to your Maslow for all those little things. A recent addition to mine: Always check z-axis height before moving router across workpiece. Reason being, I homed the machine, walked away, came back and wanted to move the sled to see something. Well, the bit was at 0, and slightly touching the wood, and it left a small gouge in the workpiece. Luckily, I was able to sand it out, but hoo-boy did I have a moment of panic.

And, regarding sanding off paint: I have tried it myself, and it was a horrible thing. I used some 60 grit sandpaper, and it became completely clogged in seconds. You might want to consider masking the area with tape first, and cutting through the tape. A couple caveats: I was doing this on a project that was plunge cuts only, so YMMV in regards to lateral cutting through tape. Secondly, I found that the bit became gunked up with the tape adhesive, and I needed to clean it every 20 minutes or so (I used acetone).


I thought about cutting a tad deeper (as you @Andy_Fencer implied that you had) spray painting, and using my “Offerman sled” to take the panel down to near final thickness. This requires more processing (rip boards, joint surfaces, glue up panels) but it may cover several solutions at once. Cheaper stock, paint hack, avoiding ply ends, using solid/defected material.

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I guess that would work, but it seems quite a bit of effort. I’ve seem people seal with PU after cutting, and after that’s dry, paint and then sand it. Spray paint sands off pretty well after its been drying for a while.

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Is PU comparable to sanding sealer? I’m unfamiliar with the initials.:thinking:

My guess was Poly Urethane.

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That makes complete sense :joy:. Thanks. I didn’t know until recently that FWW could be both Final Written Warning or Fine Woodworking! This could add unwanted hyperbole to building a cross cut sled, couldn’t it?

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Yep, poly urethane

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Great sign!

This postgives me hope lol! My maslow is almost there. Still fighting with the Z axis. But I’m getting closer to that sled…6th times a charm!

Thanks! You can do it! It’s all pretty tough in the beginning, there is quite a learning curve, but you’ll get there…