Inkscape Outset and Inlays

Today I decided to try my hand at doing some inlay work. The tricky part with inlays is getting the kerf correct.

Inkscape has an “Outset” command that should work for kerf…

You can change the amount of Outset under preferences…

I experimented around and found .002 provided good results for proofgrade acrylic. I applied a single Outset to each piece in the design I wanted to try out (select all, apply Outset)…

I was very pleased with the results - all the pieces press fit in place except the green eye. Will need to work on that a bit. :slight_smile:

Go Hawks!


Ohhhh! Beautiful job! Acrylic is so unforgiving. :grinning:


To be clear I liked the work, not the shape of the work.


Beautiful job!


Nice work! Do you mind if I use your design? My wife would love this!

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That’s a pretty good use of offset. it works very well for some designs, but others not completely.

I haven’t been able to get Inkscape to render offsets for precision work in making inlays and relieves. The green eye is a good example of difficulty in using offset on a piece with complex outlines, especially with both convex and concave parts. I use stoke width and then stroke to path to get snug inlay pieces. You might try that for the eye.

Here is a link to an old topic that addresses some of these workflow issues. I got lots of ideas and help from the community, especially from @Jules for using stroke to path and @palmercr to show how OpenSCAD would do it. @dannyc’s post inspired by someone not on the forum though really fit my needs the best and allowed me to efficiently make inlay Scrabble letters.


Sure, just split the SVG of the Seahawks logo found in wikipedia…

…and apply the Outset settings I did. Be sure to combine the paths for each piece into single shapes. Would love know how they work for you.


Thanks for the pointers, I’ll try those next time!

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Very nice!

I had heard somewhere that kerf compensation for a blinking light was an extremely convoluted process with half a dozen variables to take into account. But applying an Inset/Outset of 0.002" was all it took, huh? I’m floored!


Heh. Acrylic does NOT let you fudge the numbers. I had one that was 0.0015".


Used the same outset kerf settings while scaling up a bit. Also reversed the blue center piece for a little better fit. Then used some veneer to insure it all held together.


Beautiful work!

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Gosh, that’s amazing!

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I did something similar using illustrator, I used a 0.007" path offset. The pieces were super snug, unfortunately the acryllic is a tad thinner than the wood so the wood sticks out a bit. Next I attempt an epoxy clear coat!


Great fit! :grinning: