CNC Woodworking Introduction by Ralph Bagnall


Cover of Beginners Guide to CNC Machining in Wood by Ralph Bagnall

CNC woodworking was the topic for our special online meeting.

CNC woodworking is a topic of interest for many of our SketchList 3D users.  Our leader, Ralph Bagnall, is an author, consultant, tool designer, and shop owner.  During this hour he shared some of his CNC knowledge with us.   This quote is from Ralph.

“I started programming operating CMCS back in mid-90s 1995 or six. I’ve been teaching and programming and operating and training operators and installing and servicing machines since the mid-90s.   And so it’s just an area that I’ve really come to love and enjoy my work. And so when I got the opportunity to write a book about it.

But while the book is designed for beginners and for primarily for what I call the desktop CNC market, a lot of the programming strategies and things I talk about are applicable to professional shops as well.  I’ve consulted with professional shops for the last 20 years on their CNC acquisitions and operations. So, for those of you who are in the business and are working with your CNCS. Again, feel free to ask any questions.

A lot of the photos I will show you are from my benchtop unit.

But a lot of the things we’re going to talk about is the same as you face in as a cabinet maker, or as a furniture maker.

I know I learn more easily when what I’m trying to learn is in context.  Knowing how to figure out the formula for the area of the given size doesn’t really mean anything to me. But when you frame it as  “okay if you measure the wall you can figure out how much paint you need to buy, in order to paint the wall” that makes sense. And it puts everything in context so I understand the concepts.

And I did that with my book about CNC woodworking.  I  divided  the book into individual projects with each designed to teach a specific skill set or a different tip or trick or technique.”

I just got my copy and asked Ralph to share some CNC woodworking tips.

See the video [Zoom recording] here.

The book — Beginner’s Guide to CNC Machining in Wood — is a number one seller at CAD book on Amazon.

The book is it gives you insight into Ralph’s approach to thinking,  It covers his approach to the processes of the prep, cutting, and assembly through all stages.

If you want to know more, read the post of Ralph’s demo on using SketchList 3D and VCarve.


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