July 10th 2024: PixelCNC v1.82b Released - 30% Off Summer Sale!

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Example PixelCNC Projects

Here are some example demonstration projects to help users become acquainted with how to go about creating certain projects in PixelCNC.

 

2.5D and 3D Carved Sign

 8"x5" Slow and Steady.pnc - A simple relief carving style project that employs 3D contouring and 2.5D milling operations. The canvas composition comprises several elements that were traced into paths that were then used to generate some 3D forms using the 'Shapes From Paths' and 'Stroke Paths' functions.

 

 

 

 

CNC 3D Fractal Skull Relief

 6"x6" Skull Fractal Pattern.pnc - A relief carving with an interesting texture. This project uses the '2.5D Offset Milling' operation to rough out the workpiece. Re-roughing is done with a standard 'Parallel Carving' operation, bringing it closer to shape before finally coming in with a 'Tessellated Carving' operation for adding the patterned texture.

 

 

 

 

CNC vCarve Pirate

10"x12" Pirate V-Carve.pnc - An example of a more advanced V-carving that's produced from a single image. Parts of the design are too wide for a 1/2" V-bit to cut by itself. A '2D Offset Milling' operation removes inner-most material while cleanup of spots the endmill can't reach is done in multiple passes by a '2D Profile Milling' operation using the same 1/2" V-bit used for V-carving.

 

 

 

Nikola Tesla Halftone Photograph Carving7"x3.5" Nikola Tesla Halftone.pnc - A simple halftone from a photograph. The canvas and Nikola photo raster-layer are set to a thin Z size for the 3D contouring operations' cuts. The halftone combines 'Conformal Carving' and 'Parallel Carving' operations to produce the halftone pattern. Cut using a 90 degree V-bit.

 

 

 

 

Tree of Life 3D Relief Carving

 6"x6" Tree Of Life Relief.pnc - This project's 3D design has been created from a black-and-white source image using PixelCNC's canvas editing functionality. The circular design of the project is a great use case for the 'Spiral Carving' operation which is utilized for both roughing and finishing of the relief carving, using 1/4" and 3/32" ballnose cutters, respectively.

 

 

 

TGA2STL Utility

This is a command-line utility for converting TGA image files into triangle-optimized *.STL/Stereolithography heightmap meshes. Areas with less detail are represented using fewer triangles while more complicated areas are formed out of a higher number of triangles. This is to reduce the overall polycount of the resulting mesh to improve performance when loading the model file into a program for use.

This utility does have some limitations that may be inconvenient. PixelCNC's ability to export a mesh was originally a much improved version of the algorithm but we've since introduced a much better meshing algorithm that produces meshes with a more organic utilization of triangles that results in meshes with higher fidelity at a lower triangle count. TGA2STL is only offered here for posterity, and as somewhat of a novelty. Some may still find it useful nonetheless!

TGA2STL is hosted on GitHub at https://github.com/DEF7/TGA2STL and the latest build can be downloaded from the right side of the page under "Releases".