Shelf Maker

by audin, published

Shelf Maker by audin Nov 13, 2015


Design Tools



Shelf Maker by audin is licensed under the Creative Commons - Attribution license.

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Shelf Maker can automatically create a cutting plan for a shelf.

The size and shape of the shelf is adjustable.
The number of supports is adjustable.
The width of the material is adjustable.

It was written for use with an X-carve CNC router, using OpenSCAD's SVG export to feed Easel via inkscape. I specifically wrote it to build two triangular shelves to fit behind some wall-mounted monitors at my desk.

Custom Section


[Aside: not sure why thingiverse has decided to remove the ability to edit the normal 'instructions' field....go figure...]

  1. Adjust settings in the scad file.
  2. Render with 3d() until desired settings found (you can render with both if you like as well).
  3. Comment out 3d() and render real with just cut_plan() and F6.
  4. Export the result as an SVG.
  5. Open the SVG in inkscape and use the path -> Break Apart function to remove the implicit union() on all the parts. This allows you to adjust the cutting style for each piece in Easel. The Explode easel function can't handle the model for some unknown reason.
  6. Load the new SVG into Easel.
  7. Select everything and scale it to 1 meter. This works to set the correct size due to the two extra squares that the openscad code add in.
  8. Delete the two extra squares at the 1 meter points.
  9. Set the part outlines to 'cut outside' and set the holes to 'cut inside'. This is somewhat painful due to Easel's select function. The easiest way seems to be to select the whole thing, and then deselect the outlines via careful shift-clicking. This is rather fiddly. In the end, you want to 'cut inside' the holes, and to 'cut outside' the overall piece outlines. This will result in the pieces fitting together correctly. If you get this part wrong the boxjoint and suppor tabs will not fit correctly.
  10. Move the supports around to optimize material usage. You may be able to fit some of the supports into the arc cutouts.
  11. Carve the thing!

11 Alternate. If you want to give it a try, you can run the Easel Dogbone generator plugin. It takes quite a bit of fiddling to get the correct result as the generator seems to play with both the scale of the object being dogboned, the location of the object, and the cut style. It would probably be a better idea to add dog-boning to the openscad itself...

Without dogboning you will have to either accept that the pieces won't fit together quite completely, or adjust for this post-cutting via sanding or other method. A smaller bit will reduce the gaps. You could also set the thickness a little larger than your actual material.

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help have no clue what am doing wrong but will not let me go to 2d