Anyone else making coasters?

One of my friends has been joking with me that I’ve essentially purchased a thousand dollar coaster making machine, and I can’t really deny that it’s been a new popular passtime of mine. This is the last batch I ran off as a gift (please forgive the unglamorous backdrop, I’d just put a coat of mineral oil on them and was trying to blot them so I could pack them up):

I know @sketch42 has done some great inlay/cork coasters:

but who else has hopped on the bandwagon? I like them because they’re simple to do, look great, and let me experiment with a variety of more exotic woods (the above are done in mahogany). My only problem is that I’m starting to creep up on having more coasters than I do glasses, so… time to buy more glasses I guess? :smiley:


You’re not the only one, I was seeing how these came out in MDF first. Then I realized coasters shouldn’t have holes through them lol…


Yep! I have a few coasters planed as well.
I figure that is what everyone is getting for Christmas. :wink:

But seriously coasters are a good project size, big enough to see detail, small enough to make quickly. And then you leave them out for everyone to see.

Now that I think of it I will come up with some standard coaster designs as giveaways to show people what the machine can do. :smile:

The best kind of fun “giveaway” gift like that, is to make something that says “Aaron is awesome!” and give them out to your friends so that every time someone uses a coaster at their house, they are reminded of how cool you are.

Heh I should do something like that.

I like to make little giveaways to showcase what can be done.
Right now I have been making some [Tomorrowland Pins][1] to show what a 3d printer can do.
For the X-Carve it will be coasters :wink:

I will have to experiment with materials. I would love to try bamboo but I have to find a local source.

I have plans to make a batch of different coasters to give away as well, but recently my give always have been a little more involved…


are you running the stock spindle to cut these sketch?

I am.

To cut them I am using a stock 1000mm X-Carve with the 300w 24v spindle and a single flute 1/8" up cut bit. All tool paths are generated by Easel.

You can see the full project here:

And follow along with how I did it here:

Back on the conversation of coasters, I think my next batch of coasters might be something like this:


Cut these out of 1/4" cherry as a test. I saw some like this online. I will probably engrave something on them, just not sure what yet.


Wouldn’t condensation seep through the gaps?

It is 4 separate coasters, I haven’t finished them with anything yet…just bare wood for now.

On the puzzle, each puzzle piece is a coaster, so you wouldn’t have that much of an issue.

On the interlocking snakes, there are two coasters represented in the picture and so in theory, yes that would let condensate through, but because they are thick enough, they would probably stop the fluid form getting to the protected surface just by catching water on the way down.

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No Love for Hydra? Nice coasters I plan on doing a few myself so your not alone in your thinking.

@ErikJenkins would you be willing to share your files for those puzzle pieces? I have been wanting to make some for a long time but all of my code doesn’t seem to close up at tightly as your model has.

@JoshuaBlom Glady, what format would you like the file? And how would you like to receive it?

I imported a svg into Easel and Published the project it is called Puzzle Piece.

When I made mine, I cut them out with a 1/8" endmill.

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I had to laugh when I saw the title, because coasters are the first and only woodwork project I’ve attempted so far. My dad’s birthday was coming up, so I figured I’d make him a set of 4 personalized coasters. I ended up using walnut for the base with engraved maple inlays, and a layer of cork on the bottom. To waterpoof it I finished with a water based urethane.

Despite the joke that you can get coasters for dirt cheap, the thickness of the wood gave these a pleasing heft.


Looks fantastic!

First, GREAT JOB. Those look great! :smile:

Second, how did you manage to get the low areas of the maple inlays to be dark like that? Did you just paint the whole inlay and then sand the tops? Or is there some other method I need to learn about? :astonished:

Thank you

Ideally I would have done a shallow engraving pass to carve the inlay detail, but I couldn’t figure out how to make a sensible path for the bit to take. Instead I used dmap2gcode, which treats an bmp image as a depth map, and rastor scans the image area while moving the bit up and down. To give smooth curves I had very small stepover, so it took forever (30-40 min / engraved inlay) but it worked in the end.

To get the black in the grooves, you’re right; I painted the whole thing and sanded off the paint on the top. Lastly I cutout the inlay parts and glued them into pockets.