My latest cribbage boards

These are an upgrade to my original design. I’m using larger magnets and have added the skunk marker between 3rd and 4th streets.

The left one is oak with purple heart inlay and the right is maple with purple heart inlay. The skunk is not part of the inlay. The inlay went around the perimeter of the skunk so I could get the lighter colors in the stripes. The skunk and line work is done with a laser and everything but the finish work was done with my LongMill 30x30.

Both upgrades were in response to constructive criticism from a customer. So far everyone seems to really like the addition of the skunk.

Thanks for looking at my work. Have fun and be safe!


That looks fantastic! Any key tidbits or learnings in your inlay process?

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Beautiful work @_Michael ! I love the inlay and especially the :skunk: marker. Adds a bit of humor to the great game of cribbage. My dad LOVED cribbage!

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TLDR; Copy settings from pictures, win!

These are my settings for the cribbage board inlays along with part of this other post. Use the top link if you want further reading because there is a description and procedure file that’s a good read there.

Okay so what do these settings mean you ask?

Well let’s start with the pocket or female part. It’s just a plain old v-carve and all you need to decide is how deep you want to go into the receiving part. I chose 4mm and might be able to go thinner because I think I’m getting an inlay without a gap at the bottom.

As you can see for the plug or male part on the right we have a start depth of 3.75mm. The start depth represents the vertical distance from the bottom of the male part to the top of the female part i.e. the overlap. If we subtract that 3.75 from the 4 we have in the pocket that leaves 0.25mm gap at the floor of the pocket. The flat depth is set at 2.25mm and it represents the gap between the male and female parts that you can run your band saw blade in to separate them.

On the machine the thing that will bite you is the start depth of the male carve. If you run the generated tool path it’s going to start 3.75mm into the surface PLUS whatever it’s pass depth is calculated to be. I have been running the male carve three times. Starting with the surface set 4mm high (0 at 4mm off the surface for most people), 2mm high, then the normal one. Without doing something to compensate it’s just taking off too much meat for me.

I’m using a 45° v-bit because it’s the steepest one I have besides small engraving bits. The steeper sides should be more forgiving if you have to sand/plane off a little more or less. As you travel away from the surface of the female the inlay expands or shrinks. You can see it on one of the boards, a little white perimeter around the skunk. That would have been wider had I used a 90° bit.

With only a 0.25mm gap set between the parts and the four clamps I’m pretty sure the bottom is mated. That should let me do a shallower pocket without breaking the inlay, at least that’s my theory. With my current settings I started with 20mm or a fat 3/4" purple heart and after the two inlays I have 6mm or a skinny 1/4" left. I think that last piece can do another because I won’t need the 2.25mm saw blade gap, I’ll use 0.5 - 0.75mm and the rest of the 2.25 would hold it together.

Something to consider if your doing two sided inlay work is you have to make sure you can accurately get back to the inlay side to clean up after the band saw or add more detail.

Use some MDF or something to sandwich your inlay to distribute the pressure and protect your work.

Don’t rush the dry time on the glue, you’ve wasted at least the inlay wood if it moves on the band saw.

If you get a bad inlay and you can accurately get back to the inlay, you can run the v-carve for the pocket again and maybe save the female part.

I run the clearance pass first, not sure if it matters… … …remember to flip the male design… … …


Excellent!! Love the little skunk! Very nice touch. Is that another inlay?
Is the purple heart inlay one piece or multiple pieces? I’m so new to the cnc world and considering ordering the new Altmill but the shipping date is soooo far out, 5-6 months.

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The purple heart is all one inlay. It is very skinny at the top and bottom of the skunk but it’s all one piece, leaving the original wood for the laser to make the skunk on.

Yeah, that’s awhile to have to wait, but it does look like a beast of a machine, very fast in the videos I’ve seen.