OLG's sketchbook

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Some old and new models. I primarily started learning Blender for its STL export capability for CNC pattern creation. The flight helmet carved beautifully in cherry lumber, the fan art hunter emblem was carved in black walnut. The watch is actually a clock face cnc pattern. For cnc patterns, material and textures don’t count, only the geometry.

My art is evolving so I am trying to learn the other aspects of 3d modeling.



As I mentioned I use Blender to create cnc patterns. This next pattern was a joke. My wife is always saying I keep adding odd bits and pieces to my patterns that sometimes don’t go together. So I present to you a classic ornamental rosette with wings and a death knight and Egyptian hieroglyphics. I think they go together. :slight_smile:


Steampunk version of the Mayan calendar. The background is pixelated camo pattern and the outer wheel is partly SG1 dial home with Earth dialed in. Gears, pistons and other doodads hold up the assembly. CNC pattern of course created from the model. :slight_smile:



The latte cup is my first painted texture. Have a long ways to go. The next two models were made for cnc patterns. No texture or color required but really want to learn. Also for cnc pattern creation its about geometry so high poly is not necessarily a bad thing so meshes are not clean. Sometimes have to add a lot of geometry to get specific detail in a pattern. The tank and m911 heavy transport were carved for a gift plaque.

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Sorry have a few different models.

The pike and lion corner post were for cnc patterns. The pike fish bubbles were added post process and not rendered. The lion corner post was lightened post process only and was pretty much as rendered. The crossed eye snake was an attempt to make a snake and apply some color and texture to the model. Not a great success but a good learning experience.

An example of the cnc pattern creation process. The first image is a blender render and then using the bas relief node add on render that then is exported as a depth map image for cnc software to create a pattern.

Hey OLG it’s great to see another user on here that uses Blender for other things besides characters! I really like the panels you came up with, especially the fan art hunter emblem! I too started using Blender for CNC purposes as well as creating Bas-Reliefs. I have tested a few of the Bas-Relief addons quite extensively and have found them to be lacking somewhat for my work. I’ll share my Bas-Relief node setup if you are curious to try it out for yourself, it works quite well for smaller scenes and objects. I use it to create alphas for my jewelry I make using Blender.

Anyways keep up the great work and keep posting! I’d love to see some of your finished carvings from your CNC.

DevilDJ: super cool design.

I’ve used Blender primarily for woodworking cnc pattern creation.

Blender, excuse my language, has been frigging awesome at creating and exporting stl objects for cnc pattern creation for cnc woodworking carving patterns. It will depend on your cnc software but blender is amazing at creating models that can be exported into stl format. I have used the bas-relief node as well to create depth maps for patterns but export to stl format objects is the optimal way to export 3d blender objects for cnc patterns.

The following projects used patterns created in blender.

The first image is a dragon clawed Chippendale style footstool. The feet are hand carved but the acanthus leaf carving is all blender.

The next carving is a nerd Horde World of Warcraft pattern created for my son for a wood carved drawing book. The entirety of the book is created in wood. The hinges are all wood. I used 100% cotton paper so that it could be used in any location without the paper being affected by weather.

The last is a steampunk inspired cabinet used as a dry bar cabinet. All the carved patterns were created in blender. The cabinet is black walnut and hard maple with a steampunk motif. The top is slate with purple heart lumber as an accent. The hinges are black walnut wood dragon hands with oak dowel pins created in blender.

I have a small format cnc machine so have been a little limited on size of patterns but not on projects.




Here are some additional projects with blender created cnc patterns.

The AR-10 and katana stand used svg kanji characters imported into blender to create 3d object for stl export. Carved into purple heart lumber and maple lumber.

The second project is a wall pendulum clock in maple using solid state clock mechanism. It is loud and I love it. You can hear it in the other side of the house and it keeps the kids and animals up. What more could you ask for.

The next project is a Davinci inspired drawing book in maple lumber. All wood hinges with leather accents and 100% cotton paper. The book opens up to a flat table for drawing out in the wilds.

Have I mentioned I love blender yet. lol. It rocks for cnc pattern creation.


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DevilsDJ, if you don’t mind sharing your bas relief node set up I would love to see how you do it. I use several different node setups in addition to the bas relief node I purchased (that node only works with 2.62 and lower versions unfortunately or I would use exclusively). I have been unable to figure out how to install blender cam bas relief so far.

This is my back up process when the model is too deep for a good stl export. My cnc only does 2.5d carvings. So its a 3d to 2.5d conversion and if the model stl is too deep my cnc software will attempt to compensate and will creates a flat pattern.

With Christmas around the corner, I’ve started making holiday cnc patterns. Added some color on this model just to see how it would look. For a model I had no intention of coloring I think it came out okay.

And the prerequisite modeling of a nixie tube.

Wow OLG stunning CNC work! Your modeling skill far surpass most CNC guys from I have seen so far! I found most often people with CNC machines would just buy models and vector images and call it done. I’m with you on my love of Blender, I’m so glad it was the software I chose to learn when I got into CNC machining, it’s amazing.

I’m in love with the Steampunk cabinet, the hinges are an especially nice touch. I loved working with purple heart, the stuff was amazing for a door plaque I made for my daughter.

Have you ever thought about adding a 4th axis to your machine? What CAM software are you using? I was using Vectric VCarve Pro, CUT3D and Photo VCarve most of the time depending on the job. Once I got into jewelry though I bought a license to Deskproto, great CAM software!

As to the Bas-Relief I to used the older node system I bought which I really enjoyed except for the fact that it is locked to an older version of Blender. I have used Vilem’s Blendercam Bas-Relief as well but it is quite difficult to set up and use properly. I have fiddled with Blender’s node system for some time and I finally was able to get decent results without the need for the other addons and all that. Keep in mind it doesn’t work for every situation but I feel that it gives a more accurate representation of the model while still retaining detail. I added an AO pass to my Z depth pass, that’s how I keep the detail, I then blur the image a fuzz to lose the sharp edges. Like I said, not perfect but it has really worked for me for jewelry purposes.

Wow, thank you. Your node setup works great. The node setup I’ve used is similar but did not include the AO portion. I wish I was better with the node system but I am slowly learning.

Your node set up works great. I ran a few models with it. The older node system I had bought (sounds like its the same one you used) works a bit better with deep patterns because of the depth normalization algorithms but for mid to shallow models I think your node set up works better. I am getting a lot more depth in the patterns from it.

I have not considered adding a fourth access yet. I am primarily using the carvings as accent pieces to my woodworking. And I also love to turn wood on my lathe. Very soothing. So haven’t had much use for it.

I have a carvewright machine. Its an entry level hobby machine but its worked for me and it has produced some wonderful pieces. It unfortunately uses proprietary software for its pattern usage but all of my patterns start as blender files then stl objects before then.


A few different renders from different time frames in my learning curve. From newer to older.

Binary system had star field and planets modeled and the suns were added post process.

An AR model is a must I think for everyone. The rust texture unfortunately comes from one of my saws. A little embarrassing.

The Dalek was just a fun model to build. I may try to clean it up and add some materials to it at some point.


Quick model to try out a carbon fiber modeling technique from Fernando Jimeneztutorial. Super easy and I think it looks great. Could be a little shinier but happy with it.

I wanted to do a little hard surface modeling as a break from the organic and material practice I’ve been doing lately. So a quick little model.


Was trying to create a cnc pattern from this composition with the result being a complete failure using stl export. The pine needles are too fine and the distance between the objects is too large so getting really bad results. I usually set my patterns so they can be carved with a 1/16" router bit but the detail was too fine for that bit.

The bas relief/depth map technique produced a mediocre pattern. So going into the good try bin.

So played with it to get a better feel for material application and of course fire quick effects. Cheated and used smoke only with a light point in the center and then refined the flame post process in a graphics program. So first image is what blender rendered and second image was post processing. Didn’t spend too much time on the image since this was just practice.


A speed modeling exercise. About an hour to model the basic ship. Another hour playing with materials and post processing with Corel. Basic noise texture into color ramp for star background. Star added post process just because its so easy as a quick graphics filter add.

I like the red one. Four layers in Corel using five different graphics filters.


Last few pics I want to share. Steampunk commemorative blaster and concept electric firing gun. Both completely impractical and complete fantasy but they would be so much fun to play with.

The steampunk blaster I made back in July and the electric gun I finished this morning.


Celtic spoon design created for the wife in blender and then exported as STL for cnc machine to carve. Super pleased with results. Carved in black walnut and shellac applied to it. Pictures of the shellac drying. Final finish is polished wax.