So, I’ve taken the plunge on making Derek Hugger’s Colbri scultpture. If you haven’t seen this yet, take a minute and check it out.
While you’re there, buy the plans (full disclosure: I have no relationship with the artist). They are worth every penny. Extremely detailed instructions with exploded diagrams showing every assembly.
When I started on this, I quickly found out that it was going to be more difficult on the Glowforge than I anticipated. The plans come with both PDF and DXF models of all the parts. Problem for the Glowforge is that it does not currently do any kerf correction.
I have an extensive background in Solidworks and taking 3D models from CAM to my CNC mill, but the laser thing is new to me. That being said, going from DXF to Glowforge ready SVG was a bit of a challenge for me. I finally ferreted out a workflow that left me with accurately sized parts and GF “drilled” holes that I only needed to pass a drill bit through for clean up and final sizing.
Today has been a long day of learning and making. Here is what I have accomplished so far:
Pay no attention to the glue and other minor cleanup issues… I plan to tear it completely apart after the initial build and give it a full detailing.
It’s made from maple. The uprights call for 3/8" plywood, which I made by gluing 3 sheets of medium (1/8") together - fully sanded, of course. The base is thick maple plywood (1/4").
Notable note for those who are thinking of taking on this build: The plans assume you have machinist skills and capabilities. I had to machine everything metal in that picture but the bearings, washers and screws. You could probably get many of the machined parts of the shelf, but that would increase the BOM cost exponentially. As it is, my parts order from McMaster (following the artist’s BOM) was almost $300.