Giant Puzzle

Having a CNC router for a project like this is great. Granted I could have probably gotten the same results with a Jigsaw or a Bandsaw (on a smaller scale), but the ability to cut these pieces accurately, with minimal cleanup, WHILE being able to tinker around on other things is the shop is a godsend. I purchased some 3/4" MDF at Home Depot and had them cut the sheet in half before leaving the store. If you can get away with doing this for your project I highly recommend it. Moving 3/4" MDF by yourself is a sore back waiting to happen. I ripped each half sheet into 9 pieces and glued them together to make 9, 1.5" thick MDF blanks. I attached them to the wasteboard of the X-Carve using painters tape and super glue. It's a good strong hold that leaves no residue, try it for yourself! It can also eliminate the need for tabs to secure your workpiece while cutting

I found an SVG puzzle generator online and made this 9 piece puzzle with nice soft curves. I used Easel to connect and control my X-Carve. Easel is the all-in-one software solution for 3D carving machines. It's designed by Inventables to work seamlessly with the X-Carve and is the easiest way to get started in the world of 3D carving. I cleaned up the edges with R.O.S. where I could and on the tight corners I used a wooden dowel in the drill press with some sticky sandpaper. I then rounded over the edges with a 1/4" round over bit in my router table. To make the puzzle easy to assemble I numbered them 1-9, left to right, top to bottom. That also makes it easy to tell which way up is on the puzzle pieces. I gave it two coats of Rustoleum Chalk Paint since I have found no better way to seal MDF in preparation for its final coat of paint. Think of it as my own version of Bob Ross' liquid white, except it's not a liquid, it's a solid. Dustin Penner's Solid White. I wrapped them in craft paper to protect them during transport but figured I should brand them a little. Back onto Easel so I could use the stamp app. You load your logo onto Easel as a .svg file and it will do the rest of the digital magic so you can cut a perfect stamp that doesn't stamp backwards. I used some carpet tape to attach a piece of linoleum to an MDF backer board and cut it with a super tiny 1/32" spiral upcut bit. Considering how tiny the stamp is the quality is amazing and you can see it worked perfectly! If you just read that whole thing thank you... seriously! I feel like nobody reads these things and without a doubt, there will be a comment asking how bit that bit was. I freaking know it... Just you wait, as soon as I see that comment I'm going to pin it.

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