Some Tolkien Fun

I’ve spent the last several weeks making stuff for others (mostly for Christmas), so over my time off over Christmas, I decided to make something for me. Yes, I’m a card-carrying, cliche Tolkien fan. Hopefully that estate won’t be upset with me making one-offs of these; I have no intention of selling them online, or whatever.

Piece on the left is cherry, which I surfaced with 1/4" endmill, then coated with poly, allowed to dry, then cut the letters with 1/16" endmill. The poly allowed me to apply black stain to the letters, and simply sand off the overage after the fact.

The right thing was cheap pine, surfaced then sprayed with 2 coats of flat black. Allowed a day to dry, then used a 45 degree V-bit in multiple stages to put down the art. I told Easel to treat it as a 0.008" mill, so that it would do all of the intricate stuff. Depth varied a bit, and there was experimentation involved to get the effect that I wanted. It ranged from 0.020" to 0.050" for the larger runes. Then I drew up the frame shapes in DraftSight, exported to DXF, into Illustrator, where I joined paths, then exported as SVG to Easel. I cut from leftover cherry, sanded, applied some poly.

I may do some more finish work on the right piece, it needs some light sanding here and there, and perhaps some more flat black on the very top, which is still raw pine. (and out of view in these pics)

Anyway, good fun! I was fairly pleased with the results.


Awesome, good to know!

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IP law can get kind of sketchy. You can make anything for yourself or to give away to someone. You can also be hired to make something for someone as a one off piece of art. Say someone wants a LOTR mural on a child’s wall or a sign for their house. Making multiple items and selling for retail is where the trouble starts and the C&Ds start arriving.