Feed rate and cut depth

I’m looking at carving a sign using a 30° V bit. Going into hard maple. Using Easel. Starting with the 1/4" on a rough pass. 30 minutes for that. Then a 30° V for the detailed pass. That’s showing 7 hours. I’m wondering what a safe and reliable speed would be to shorten that time. This is what I’m trying to carve. New to this and my longmill so any help would be great.

Why use a 30 V-bit? Are you using that in a profile toolpath or something else?

How thick is your hard maple?

Maple is 14" x 10 " x .635 thick. And im fairly new to this so bit selection is an area I’m learning. What would you recommend.

Recommendations will require a better idea on what you are going to cut into that wood.

Are you going to cut an outline of the drawing or pocket areas? Will you be painting some parts of it? Will you pocket around the trees so they become raised objects?

Lots of details will help.

I will be cutting a pocket for all those areas and then painting black. A silhouette of the trees and mountain basically. No raised areas.

@Davek If I understand your reply to Tex, you will pocket out all the black areas. The piece is 10" x 14", yes? Generally, V-bits do not leave smooth surfaces on the bottoms of pockets. I don’t use Easel but if you can preview your projects, I would try one with a 1/8" down cut mill and one with a 1/16" mill. Set the depth of cut to no more than 1/8". You can try using a 1/4" to hog out the larger parts of the trees, but I don’t really think that you will gain anything by not going straight to the 1/8".

All that said, if you want to mask the piece before carving to make the painting simple, you could use a 30° v bit to cut an outline of all the areas that you want to pocket. You would be using the 30° bit only to cut the masking material.

If you have the artwork in a dxf or other vector format, I can play a bit in VCP if you like.

I understood about 1/3 of that lol. The idea was to use the 1/4 to hog out the trees and then let the 30° work its magic on the rest. I dont mind the longer carve time but I’m not sure exactly how fast to set the 30° and the depth per pass. Easel sets it by default at 30ipm 9pr and .028dpp. Can I bump that up much?

I believe the file I have is an svg but may have the dxf to. And for painting what I’ve been doing is after it’s carved I spray with a varathane. Let that dry. Paint the areas I want to then a light sand which removes the paint on the raised areas. The varathane prevents the paint from bleeding into unwanted areas which is nice. I’ve tried the blue vinyl tape stuff and it works but I find that sometimes the edges peel up on finer details. My sanding method seems to be working so far

@Davek Your painting technique sounds excellent. Clearly, you don’t need my kibitzing. :grinning:

In terms of the pocketing, I don’t know how Easel works. Someone else here will likely shed some light on your process. In VCP, if I were to use a 1/4" bit to hog out the main part of the trees, the 30° V bit would definitely get into areas that the 1/4" did not, but it would also go over all the area that the 1/4" hogged out. It would leave a poor finish on the bottom of the pocket and take forever. That’s likely why it is taking 7 hours in your project. I just played with the trees, the first time using only using a 1/8" bit and the second using only a 1/16" bit. The 1/8" took something less than 30 minutes. The 1/16" took just over 2 hours.

But, to get back to your question - finally. I have my 30° V bit set to 60ipm with a 30ipm plunge speed. However, I would never use a v bit to carve pockets, especially one as small as the 30° bit. I only use it to v carve. I don’t know what pr and dpp are. How deep are you cutting your pockets?

I’m going to go .20 depth. That’s been a nice depth to use for the painting technique I use. I switched the 30 to a 60 and the time dropped to 2 hours. I may lose a little of the detail in the finer points bit given its a silhouette I think that should be ok. I have more wood than I know what to do with atm so I can test a few pieces before the final one

1 Like

I will run it with the 1/8 or 1/16 and see how that looks as well. I really appreciate the help. So many options it’s hard to decide which one wouod be best

1 Like

@Davek You will definitely get a better bottom finish on the pockets. The big comparison will be in the level of detail.

Trial and error right? I’m learning more and more every time I use the machine. I can’t wait to start to use it to its full potential. I do need to move to a different software. I want to make boxes and I think a stronger program would help

1 Like