News Blog



4 Cool Things to Make With a CNC Machine Today

4 Cool Things to Make With a CNC Machine Today

4 Cool Things to Make With a CNC Machine Today

Woodworking has become one of the top hobbies in the country, with enthusiasts spending $3.32 billion each year. Of these purchases, a popular one is buying a CNC machine. 

If you bought this nifty machine, you’re probably wondering, what can a CNC machine do? Figuring out interesting CNC machine uses comes down to what you’re passionate about. 

Check out these four suggestions for a few ideas of cool things to make with a CNC machine.

1.  Gears

Learning how to create gears can open you up to a wide variety of projects. You only need a small CNC machine to create them. You’ll want to download or create your gear pattern so that you can program your machine. 

  • Clock
  • Safe 
  • Kinetic sculpture
  • Lamp 
  • Wall art 

Just keep in mind that wood isn’t used in mechanical projects for a good reason. Wood can’t achieve precise and accurate meshing. It’s also prone to snapping, chipping, and compressing. What you design with wooden gears should be done more for aesthetics and less for actual engineering. 

2. Elephant Puzzle 

You don’t need to be a child to appreciate this creative elephant puzzle. The original instructions call for a scroll saw, but you can easily adapt them for a CNC machine. Use a .25 inch bit for the outside, and then a .125 inch bit for the individual pieces. 

If you want to make a puzzle that can stand, then use a piece of wood that’s at least one inch thick. To make a puzzle that lays flat, use a thinner piece of wood. 

To finish your puzzle, you should sand, stain, and seal the wood. This will bring out the color and grain to improve its looks while also protecting the wood. 

3. Wireless Charger 

You can create a custom wooden wireless charger that looks elegant on your desk. All you need is a few pieces of wood, aluminum sheeting, and a wireless charging module. 

The first thing you’ll do is cut out the shape of your wireless charger using your X-Carve CNC machine. Then you’ll layer the wood and aluminum. Finally, you’ll attach the charging module.

4. Relief Map

To create your own relief map, you’ll need to start by downloading the STL Version of the area you’d like to cut. You’ll need to use a software like Fusion 360 to then manipulate your map into something your CNC machine can understand and create. 

Be careful with the size of your final code. Some machines may not be able to handle the large amount of information required. If this happens, you’ll need to break up your map project into separate pieces. 

Once you have your template, you’ll secure your wood and let your machine get to work. 

Try These Cool Things to Make With a CNC Machine

Hopefully, these ideas have sparked your imagination. You can try these cool things to make with a CNC machine, and then branch out to harder or more complex projects. 

If you’re more engineering-minded, then creating gears and interlocking pieces will appeal to you. If you’re more interested in creating beautiful pieces, then the map or cell phone charger may appeal more. 

Browse our other articles for more useful advice pertaining to all areas of your life.