Hummingbird Inlay Box

Maple with a walnut inlay, much like the butterfly project that I posted before.

These are an interesting project, frustrating but interesting.


Nice work Grant. I’ll get there someday I hope.

Frustrating means you must have learned a few things along the way. Nice work!

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@Heyward43 @CRD Thanks guys. Claude: For me, the most frustrating, and nerve-wracking part is the sanding after bandsawing away the excess of the inlay. Too little and you don’t see the details. Too much and you sand away details. The key is to knowing - and I’m still learning - when it’s as good as it’s going to get. After another few dozen, I may just get it consistently right. :upside_down_face:


Two questions - Did you use f-engrave? They have a good, hard-to-follow video on inlays; and - Where are you sourcing your wood? I don’t have any local suppliers, and need a place to order.

We’re not getting enough shared projects, so thanks for sharing.

@BillKorn Bill: I use this method:

Vectric has a couple of videos, too. Their method is very similar, but I get good results with this one, so I’ll stick to it. I’m using VCarvePro as the cam software. I don’t think that’s critical, though. It’s just a V-bit tool path and you could do that in anything.

I’m spoiled for wood source. I work off and on at my friend’s cabinet making shop. I pretty much have my pick of the shorts that they would otherwise burn or toss for lack of space. In my basement shop, I have the usual shop machines: jointer, planer, bandsaw; table saw, drum sander, router table, compound miter saw and 2 lathes. So I can take the rough sawn off cuts and pretty much do anything I want with them.

When I want something more exotic, I can go locally to KJP Select. They are pricey, but I can buy in small quantities and they bring in things like bloodwood, purpleheart and other exotics that my friends don’t use.

I’ve done a few of these where I don’t use wood as the inlay. I pour coloured epoxy into the “female” part. They look quite good and the colour choices are pretty much endless.

Where are you?

This is one of the things I’ve wanted to try. I don’t have Vectric, so I’ll have to try it with f-engrave.

I’m down in SE PA. There are a couple local shops, but they’re closed right now.



@BillKorn Bill: I have not used f-engrave, but was curious about using it for this process. I found this youtube video where the guy does pretty much what I am doing, using f-engrave. It will likely make more sense to you, as you are familiar with f-engrave. The terminology is much different than that used by vcarvepro, but the concepts and results look the same.

Good luck with it.

I don’t think shipping you wood is a practical solution, unfortunately. :grinning:

It may be worth your while to approach cabinet making or woodworking shops to ask about getting their shorts. I’m lucky now to have friends in the business, but before that, I would just go to shops and ask if I could scrounge. These days, that’s likely not possible, but it’s something to think about in the future.

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There is a place that sells wood in 2 foot lengths at various widths and thicknesses that I’ve used before. Look up Ocooch Hardwoods. They’re in Southwest Wisconsin. They’ve got quite a selection of different kinds of woods. They’re standard thicknesses range from 1/16" to 1/2" and the standard widths range from 4" to 12". When they tell you the wood is 24" x 6", it is exactly that; these aren’t nominal measurements, but real ones. I don’t have any left, so can’t say if the thickness is nominal or actual.


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Thanks Grant. f-engrave is one of those programs you just have to try a couple times to try all the options and then it just makes sense. I’ve used it a couple times for parts I sent out. The detail looks really nice on aluminum after it’s anodized with a dark color like red or green.

I have enough things lined up to do I’ll be okay until the ‘atmosphere’ improves.


Thanks Michael. I heard bout this place and then lost the name so I couldn’t find them. They have some very interesting stuff - I already started adding to my cart!

Thanks for the tip.


I like that inlay looks nice im thinking of trying one out but still have a few more projects to tackle first

@Tristan Tks, Tristan. I’ve still some glitches to work out so that the results are more consistent. Overall, though, I’m pleased with the results. Good luck with yours. Post pics, pls.

I will for sure post up on here when i get around to making it. Maybe we can share tips once we get it down lol.

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@Tristan Sounds like a plan