Inventables Community Forum

Best way to carve a lake

So I am looking at doing something for my dad using the lake. I am thinking a table with a blue epoxy resin for the lake or a wall hanging. what is the best way to get a “lake file”? I don’t think I am needing the topographical but that might help isolate the lake…

My vision is to use the 18" rounds you can find at HD and have the lake be the inlay. I would really like a table for the back porch, but my mind is still turning so…

Thank you, Drew

I would probably trace the outline and ignore the different depths as they are so close together. If I were doing this, I’d load the PDF in my Rhino3D program. Then I’d eliminate all the stuff I didn’t want. Then I’d offset the bit to the interior of the remaining outer line and numerous offset toolpaths to clean the interior. It would take a fine bit to get into all the nooks and crannies at first, so I’d probably create a couple files for different diameter bits.

I’ve done a few carvings of Lake Belton. below are STL files that can be imported to something like V-Carve to create the G-Code for import to UGCS or Easel.
rawmodel-215610.stl (7.5 MB) rawmodel-19835.stl (7.5 MB) rawmodel-19838.stl (7.5 MB)

You can also go to and create your own STL if you just want a specific area of the lake or if you want to change your water surface level or just tweak the model.

Hope this helps.

I’d like to do something similar for Lake Simcoe here in Barrie, Ontario. However I cant find bathymetry information on any of the waterways here in Canada, how did you guys come across the ContourMap.pdf of Lake Belton?

I googled contour map of lake belton…images

Wow you hit the nail on the head with that one! Thanks.

I’ll have to email the authors to see if they have a vector file on the image, most of the interesting depth occur in the congested western portion of the lake.

1 Like

Lake files can be tough… I’ll save you some time. I made an SVG from the ContourMap.pdf file that was posted earlier. Topographic files are time consuming but I could give you some tips if you need. I usually use a 60 degree v-bit when I carve lakes because it will show a lot more detail and take much less time than using a tiny bit. The only downside is the depth of the carve. I’d probably go 0.125" deep at the max with a vbit for this file. Bet it would still look great with epoxy though.

I only spent about 10 min on this so it probably needs to be touched up in some places. The best way would be to use Easel’s “Edit Points” function and delete/move anything that looks bad. I have also attached the easel file, use that because I already cleaned up all stray points.

Hope this helps!

Lake|attachment](upload:// (347.0 KB) blakmapLake (347.0 KB)

Wow, thank you Martin, Luke and Robert for your replies and the files. You have set me off in the right direction. I really appreciate the work y’all put I to helping me out!!

Tyson, welcome to the group and good luck with your carve :slight_smile: