Sunday, December 14, 2014

Time For A Christmas Project!

Christmas time is here once again in the Midwest and so far we've been lucky enough to have little snow.  Not that I don't like the look of it as it makes the Christmas season be more right with the world.... at least for me anyway.  But that is about as far as I want it to be and can live without the cold weather and shoveling a foot of the wet heavy stuff.  So with the season upon us I thought I should at least get this project started and the past couple of weeks have given me the incentive to get going on it.  
  Everyone who is anyone knows of the Christmas show "A Charlie Brown Christmas".  The one thing in the show that has stood out for me and a lot of people my age is the message of what Christmas is all about. Charlie Brown struggles to find the answer to what Christmas is all about.  So with that in mind this project came to be. 

I came across this image online some time ago and immediately was struck with the idea for a new project using my CNC machine.  I liked the idea of making a living room display but at first thought I would use Linus's entire speech that he gave in the Charlie Brown Christmas show.  I had to find the video of that scene and get the wording correctly to start.  This was the easy part.  So with that in hand I began to lay out my project in the computer. 

Here was my new layout of Linus and his entire Christmas speech.  I knew that this was way to much wording to be put on an acrylic lighted display and so that did not even cross my mind when I laid this image out.  I would engrave it into wood and then decide if it was exactly what I was looking for. 

Here is the computer generated image of how the piece will look when it is engraved.  Still looks good at this point..... so I moved forward on the project.  After I ran several test pieces and was happy with my efforts I engraved the first piece of wood. I still had second thoughts about all of the wording.  Just seemed a bit to busy yet.  

Here's how the piece turned out.  It was difficult to get the depth of the words just right to have it easy to read clearly.  So still undecided I set up to make another version of this display with less wording and a little different layout. 

This version was simpler to engrave and took a third of the time to create compared with the first version which took over an hour and a half to just engrave, not counting the time it took to cut it out.  I was able to engrave the letters deeper due to the fact all the words are larger on the display.  Both displays are exactly the same size and so it was easy to compare. I will have to varnish each piece next and then the lettering will stand out better and be much more visible.  Once I get the displays finished and figure out stands for them I will post this project again to show you how it all turned out.  Hopefully in the next few days. One display I will keep the other will be a gift I am sure.  Still not sure which one I will hold on to yet.  
  Also I may paint Linus in color on the displays as well. I would paint the blanket on his head a light blue with black shoes and pants and a red and white shirt.  It should make him stand out a bit more as well.  Just will have to see once I get that far with this project.

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