Dual carve problems continue

Well folks, after my successful single letter care last week I thought I would attempt my shop sign one more time. I must say I am highly disappointed with the results.

I really need John or someone from inventables to view this and let me know where I am going astray?

I can see two possible problems here. You’re showing your XY zero point, but I still didn’t see where you do your Z zero. The spot you have marked is not even good surface to take both rough and detail bit Z zero adjustment. Second one is your brushes are too low to the surface. The name is dust shoe, that suppose to be a little higher not to rub surface that much. If it is sucking dust, it’s enough. Particles can stay, as long as they’re not air born, there is no problem. Bristle brush is lifting your router. If you please make another video showing while you’re running your Z zero on both bits, might be helpful for us to determine the problem. If it makes sense.

I agree with Alan (mostly). Your method of setting zero is iffy at best. First: you need a flat surface for zero. Looks like you may be on the curved edge of the work piece. Has to be flat area. Second: the paper method you use to set your zero is not accurate. Set your bit in loose, lower down to just above surface and let bit drop down to make contact and then tighten bit. Every time you change a bit, when the program ends and returns to zero, don’t cut power to stepper motors so it locks spindle in place. Raise spindle with software, replace bit, lower to near surface, let bit drop to touch surface and tighten. Third: what bits are you using? Looks like up-cuts and that is why your cuts are so fuzzy. What are your doc and ipm settings and spindle rpm. All makes a difference. Just posted this on two stage cuts. Check it out. 2 stage cut

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Just watched your video again. I would say that most, if not all of your problems are due to inaccurate re-zeroing. All of your 2nd cuts are pushed to the right. Cut into letters on left and missed the letters on right. And depths of cuts are different too. You have got to change the way you set your zero!

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James, This is not the same problem you had before, This is brand new (as you could tell from how it looked)

Looking at your sign I know what happened. Because I did the same thing before and I got results identical to yours. It is not how you set your zero, it is not your dust shoe, it is not your machine.

You told Easel you were using a different size bit than you actually used! It is hard to tell if it was the Rough or the Detail bit, but I am guessing it was the detail bit. You may have told Easel you were using a 1/4 inch detail and then used a 1/8. Not sure exactly what you told it and what you used, but it sure looks like you told it one size and then accidentally used a different size.

The reason I am so certain is because I did the exact same thing a few months ago and I got results just like you are showing.

You sure Allen? Wouldn’t the wrong size bit still have followed the same pattern but have left equal defects on all sides of the letters. Not saying your wrong, you have more experience than me I’m sure, just trying to envision this.

Jeff, I could be wrong, but from the way it looks that is my best guess. I just don’t think he could have possibly missed the X/Y zero position by that much. The wrong bit size is an easy mistake to make, especially when doing the rough/detail passes.

That machine is out of alignment and something wrong with Z zero adjustment. Wrong bit doesn’t give stairs, only lives lines behind If you use small bit instead of big one, gives perfect surface but cuts letter edges if you use big drill for detail.

It still looks to me like the detail bit was smaller than he told Easel it would be, so it left the rough edge around all the letters. I just do not see how his machine could possible be that much out of alignment unless he did it on purpose.

I did make that mistake once. Used .0625 instead of .0312 bit on detail cut. It still followed the pattern but cut large and left small slivers in places where the smaller bit should have cut. I hope between us all we can help James. Would hate to be the reason he started drinking excessively.

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I have seen him do it correctly, so I know he can zero the bit. That is why I think this is something different.

But when he was successful he did not have the dust shoe on the spindle. So maybe his dust shoe is flexing the carriage more than I would imagine possible.

Or it could be something simple like he is missing steps due to the voltage pots being set incorrectly.

Yeah, I saw that video too. Maybe a drink (or 2) couldn’t hurt.



It looks to me like the machine is missing steps at some point during the process.

The most common causes are belt tension or low voltage on axis pots for the on the G-Shield.

But you should look at your depth of cut per pass, and feed rate. It looks like you are trying to cut this in 2 passes to me, possibly try 4 or 6 will help.
Jamming the cutter (z-axis) into the material without the tool being able to cut that fast could just cause it to skip steps (Not Move). This will cause the leftover wood on the bottom thats not cut away.

A bad zero on X and Y will cause the tool to move in one direction or another. And you will see a shadow effect.
A bad zero on Z will cause the incomplete finish on the bottom or too deep of cut on the bottom.

But the leftover wood that stands high can be caused by incorrect tool size. If the G-code is written for a wider tool and you use a smaller tool, it will leave this wood standing. Or again, a moved origin (Zero) because of missed steps or skipping.

Might take some work to figure out, but the easiest way is to slow the feed rates and give it another try on a smaller project, like one letter!

Hope this helps.


Thank you William for your response. This of course is occurring only when I attempt a ‘dual’ carve. My belt tensions all seem to be okay as I have no problem with any of my carvings except with the dual carve procedure. I have previously adjusted my ‘pot’ voltages to about 1/8 th turn from maximum on all channels. Depth of cut was set at .020 inches, Carve speed is 20 IPM. I don’t know how to add cut passes as you suggest, just what easel assigns. I set my zero by the paper under the bit method and I attempt to use the same point all the time. I set the ‘rough’ carve for a 1/4" bit and the ‘detail’ carve for a 1/8" bit. If there is a better way to set the ‘z zero’ I would appreciate you informing me of the procedure. It seems my problems were caused by my dust shoe attachment. I left it off for my last dual carve attempt and I achieved acceptable results. (See my last video attached). https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nts45oN20Cc

Well, folks I have another infamous dual carve video for you, though it doesn’t start out that way!

The roughing pass was losing steps on the X axis. That was very evident in your video. It looks like the detail pass was able to clean up the errors.

First job you ran was remarkable. Except uneven surface problem at the beginning. Just keep in mind that, some times resurfacing wood on your planer wouldn’t be the best solution. For signs like that, you might want to use .75" flat bit to resurface your work piece before start carving.
While you’re doing dual carve for your shop sign, some how your machine stopped, then I believe you start your PC and re-zero it and started same job from beginning. In my opinion, that doesn’t work. If you restarted your machine, carving starts on clean surface again, existing half job is trashed. If you want to find same XYZ zero, you must have XYZ touch plate and of course more reliable software like UGS.
I think your frusturation comes from sticking with same zeroing style with Easel. Easel is good and easy software, name tells. But not professional solution. You’re forcing your self running professional job with same easy way over and over again. Maybe it’s time to move on. Maybe you have to start thinking about differend software and higher level G-code sender. Or just stop doing dual carve.
I don’t even see any reason running .125 detail bit for what you’re carving. Letters are big enough to carve with .25" bit at once. Like I said, this is my opinion. I use V-Carve pro/UGS with no fail.

Ok Allen, how did the detail pass clean up in the body when all it did was go around the outside of the box and around the edges of the letter’s? I sat and watched the whole detail portion and the 1/16" bit never carved inside the body of the box.

Watched your video. Not going to comment on what the problem your having is, but you said you reset your doc from .010 to .025 and speed from 20 ipm to 40ipm? Might I suggest this to you. I would have cut that material (at minimum) using 1/4" bit at .050 doc & 80-100 ipm.
You are wasting way to much time for your cuts to complete. You have a Dewalt P611 router James…go for it.
I do agree with Alan. Could have cut that sign out with .25". Does Easel tell you .25" is to big to cut all?

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Alan, I have done it with both, 1/4" bit and the 1/8" bit for rough carve with almost identical results. I though I would try the small rough carve bit to see if it made a difference, it didn’t. Secondly, it’s a matter of economics for me, I can hardly justify the cost of other software when the only problem I have with easel is the dual carve. I did not attempt to rescue the ‘stopped’ bit piece as it was practically trash anyway so I resurfaced the board and started from scratch. I have a lot more time than money. If I don’t get an acceptable carve tomorrow I will abandon my dual carve efforts and stay with what works!