Sign & Digital Graphics

April '19

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S I G N & D I G I T A L G R A P H I C S • April 2019 • 23 things they use a router for are acrylic letters and name badges. "Routers are so versatile. Most peo- ple buy one for one reason and find five other reasons," he says. For attachments, most sign shops want an engraving head and a tangential knife for cutting mate- rials. Most routers will use a rotating router bit. A drag knife can cut through Coroplast, which are corrugated plastic sheets, and other foam products. Jason Friesen, CNC sales manager for Laguna Tools in Irvine, California, says that Laguna's customers use routers to make signs, furniture, cabinets, textured wall panels, plastic and aluminum parts for industrial applications, trade show booths, art pieces, aerospace, car audio speaker enclosures, musical instruments and custom homes. " CNCs allow customers to be creative in a totally different way. Anything users can imagine and draw in the software can be machined by a CNC," he says. "The speed and accuracy of these machines gives users the ability to produce parts that are too time consuming, complex or expensive to make by hand. By reducing production times, parts become cheaper and faster to produce, allowing shops who own a CNC to increase profits or offer a more competitive price to their customers." He says that a carpenter may think of building something by hand but his pro- cess is completely different than working on a CNC router. CNCs can be used to design joinery or 3D elements that a carpenter couldn't do with a saw, hammer and nails. Routers make "these types of shapes easier and allow carpenters to use different joinery methods to create different aesthetics," Friesen says. "Once they get their head around how this works and use the soft- ware to get the idea into the machine for machining, they kind of open up a huge option for them to do whatever they want." Laguna Tools has one customer who uses their CNC router to build wooden bike frames. Another customer makes ornate props for cosplay costumes. By reducing production times, parts become cheaper and faster to produce. Routers are capable of clean cuts on plastic materials. Image courtesy of AXYZ Automation Group. Image courtesy of Laguna Tools.

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