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Q: What can a CNC machine be used for?A: For embossing thin metallic foils :) In continuation to my article about embossing templates printed on a 3D printer I would like to present to you an embossing technique that I have tried and used successfully for some time. It is about making embossing with a CNC machine. In the article mentioned above I presented the generation of some STL files, this files can be imported into your favorite computer aided manufacturing (CAM) program and you can mill the model in wood, plastic or metal, obtaining a template. But no, it’s not about making templates on a CNC machine.

You can find CNC embossing machines, machines with considerable strength, which can emboss models in different materials. But its not about this, the technique I use does not require machines with great strength. I also found some mini CNC machines that were called embossing CNC machines but in the end it turned out that the term embossing was used as a synonym for engraving, which is, of course, wrong.

The technique I propose is simple and fast, it uses a very cheap mini CNC, cheap materials at your fingertips, simple tools and surprisingly good results. In step two I will show you how to create toolpaths for the embossing operation and in step three I will show you the necessary tools, materials and some decorative objects I made with this technique.

I will not insist on how to operate a CNC machine, I especially address those who know the basics of operating a CNC and want to try something new. However, I want to point out that it is never too late to start learning how to work with a CNC even just to use this embossing technique. I also want to say that I searched really hard if anyone else uses this technique and found nothing … Is it something presented for the first time? :)”

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