Artistic Designs with Inkscape, Eggbot Tools, and ESTLCAM

New Home Forum ZenXY Software – ZenXY Artistic Designs with Inkscape, Eggbot Tools, and ESTLCAM

This topic contains 25 replies, has 6 voices, and was last updated by  karltinsly 2 months, 3 weeks ago.

Viewing 26 posts - 1 through 26 (of 26 total)
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  • #41725

    karltinsly
    Participant

    I have been looking for a way to create more artistic designs (as opposed the the more geometric ones, which are also cool)  for my sand table. I’ve developed a nice technique and workflow that allows me to create interesting designs stuff fairly quickly. When I get time, I want to create a full-blown set of instruction for this, but in the meantime, here is a brief overview, if you would like to try it.

    What You Need

    Inkscape – open source vector graphics editor

    Eggbot tools – plugins for inkscape – https://github.com/evil-mad/EggBot/releases/tag/v2.5.0

    ESTLCAM – this is what I have, you might try something else

    Setup

    1. Open Inkscape.
    2. Open File>Document Properties.
    3. Change Default Units to mm.
    4. Turn off Show Page Border.
    5. Close Document Properties.
    6. Draw box the exact size of your drawing area.
    7. Save file as Sand Table Default. This is your starting point.

    Fill The Whole Table With Hatch Lines

    1. Open your Sand Table Default file in Inkscape.
    2. Choose the fill tool and fill the square with any color.
    3. Open Path>Path Effects.
    4. Click the plus sign to add an effect and select Hatches (rough).
    5. Open Extensions>Eggbot>Preset Hatch for Fills and Apply.
    6. Choose the Edit paths by node tool.
    7. Rotate/compress/stretch the hatching by dragging the tiny green square around.
    8. Select Edit>Duplicate.
    9. In the path effects window, click the minus sign. This removes the hatching from the duplicated square.
    10. If the border of the square is not visible, open the Fill and Stroke tool and add a stroke to it.
    11. Save file as a DXF.
    12. Open DXF in ESTLCAM.
    13. Select the hatching lines and the square outline.
    14. Place the Zero point where you want it (I use 0,0)
    15. Save the CNC program. The simulator will pop up.
    16. Click play in the simulator and click FF several times to speed it up.
    17. If there are travel moves you don’t like, you can play with the machining order or add little helper lines to move the ball where you want it before it starts the next line.
    18. Save and test again until satisfied.

    Those last couple of steps are trial and error, though it goes pretty fast. The design below took about 20 minutes to create. The technique for filling in a drawing is the basically the same – use the fill tool, use the path effects tool to add the hatching, use the eggbot extension to make the hatching more regular, and then use the node tool to manipulate the hatching. I like to draw the outline of the object last, to “finish” the picture.

    Hope this helps some others to get started with this technique. Please share your designs once you’re made some!

    2017-08-18-07.20.45-1

    4 users thanked author for this post.
    #41751

    Johnny
    Participant

    That’s pretty badass I must say. Well done.

    #41788

    karltinsly
    Participant

    Here’s one done with just Inkscape and ESTLCAM.

    2017-08-18-17.43.50

    #41823

    Barry
    Participant

    Dude!  You’re killing it!

    #41830

    Jason
    Participant

    Love it!

    #41838

    karltinsly
    Participant

    Here’s a video about some of these new designs.

    #41858

    Jeffeb3
    Participant

    That’s looking great!

    The more geometric pieces could be added to sandify. Especially the wipe, and wiping different sections at different angles. I’m working in the turkey editor, but I might do some of those next, just to get a quick win.

    #41865

    karltinsly
    Participant
    T The more geometric pieces could be added to sandify. Especially the wipe, and wiping different sections at different angles.  

    That would be great! Something like enter the coordinates of the table/area, choose an angle and density, maybe see a simulation onscreen like with the other tools?

    A couple of other options that would be nice would be an offset – or maybe call it inset – to provide a buffer between the wipe and the defined edge, and an option to draw the border at the end.

    #41869

    karltinsly
    Participant

    Here’s another design done with the eggbot hatching technique (what? the eggbot’s hatching?).

    2017-08-19-07.58.57

    #41872

    Jeffeb3
    Participant
    T The more geometric pieces could be added to sandify. Especially the wipe, and wiping different sections at different angles.

    That would be great! Something like enter the coordinates of the table/area, choose an angle and density, maybe see a simulation onscreen like with the other tools? A couple of other options that would be nice would be an offset – or maybe call it inset – to provide a buffer between the wipe and the defined edge, and an option to draw the border at the end.

    I’m not sure how they are making the corners smooth. It doesn’t look like a straight sinusoid. I would do something more rectangular.

    The border is actually a bit tricky, because you’d have to calculate which side you were on, and finish it completely. If you stopped at the bottom right, you wouldn’t want your next coordinate to be the upper left. Doable though.

    For the offset, you’re saying just take the machine limits and move them in by an amount, like 10mm to make the wipe not go all the way to the limits?

    The variables would be angle, size (half the wavelength), and offset. WDYT? It would use the machine limits for now. The reverse button would be the only small amount of control for where to enter the pattern.

    At some point, we’ll need to do a big refactor to be able to compound the patterns, and show what that would be like. I don’t expect having that kind of time until it gets cold outside 🙂

    #41873

    Jeffeb3
    Participant
    Here’s another design done with the eggbot hatching technique

    I also want to add something like argyle and Chevron patterns. That might not be as easy as I think though.

    #41875

    karltinsly
    Participant

    I’m not sure how they are making the corners smooth. It doesn’t look like a straight sinusoid. I would do something more rectangular.

    That would be fine – my manually coded one was rectangular.

    For the offset, you’re saying just take the machine limits and move them in by an amount, like 10mm to make the wipe not go all the way to the limits?  

    Exactly. This is not critical, but sometimes you might want to see the “turnaround,” which gets erased when you draw the border. Just thought it might be a useful option.

      The variables would be angle, size (half the wavelength), and offset. WDYT? It would use the machine limits for now.  

    Sounds great! The machine limits are fine – I just change them if I want a corner or other part of the printable area.
    #41876

    karltinsly
    Participant

    In case you don’t know, my wife loves alpacas (we own six of them). This one’s for her.

    2017-08-19-10.19.04

    #41883

    Jeffeb3
    Participant

    Looks like a llama to me 😉

    #41884

    Jeffeb3
    Participant

    @Ryan, you should add this to the software section of the ZXY page.

    #41887

    karltinsly
    Participant

    It takes longer to print one of these than it does to make the design at this point.

    2017-08-19-11.34.10

    #41890

    Jeffeb3
    Participant

    That’s either a camel, or Elvis’ hair in the wind.

    #41905

    Jeffeb3
    Participant

    2017-08-19-1503180036_1920x1050_scrot

    I haven’t “deployed” this yet. So you’d have to run it locally, on the “wiper” branch to get it. I haven’t figured out the best way to release code on this yet without a high chance of everything breaking.

    #41908

    Jeffeb3
    Participant

    Also, I decided to avoid doing the offset. It was just increasing the logic too much, so you’ll have to adjust the machine size instead.

    #41909

    karltinsly
    Participant

    Nice! I haven’t been able to get Sandify to run locally. I look forward to trying it after it’s deployed, though.

    #41925

    Barry
    Participant
    That’s either a camel, or Elvis’ hair in the wind.

    #41927

    Ryan
    Keymaster

    LOL

    #41984

    karltinsly
    Participant

    This was pretty complicated design. It has multiple parts, all close together. It was tricky getting the printing sequence right. Came out pretty good, I think.

    2017-08-20-17.59.57

    2 users thanked author for this post.
    #42147

    karltinsly
    Participant

    Been a while since I’ve posted. I’ve been busy working on getting my table to run off an arduino with SD card. Since I’m not a coder, every little step requires a lot of research and trial and error. I’m sure any experienced developer could have tossed this off in an hour, but it’s taken me days to get this far. So currently, when the machine first starts, it homes, then scrambles an array of numbers from 1-23 (the number of files at the moment). It then starts playing the files (named 1.g, 2.g, etc) in the new scrambled order.

    One thing I’m finding is that there are a few designs that don’t look great printed over another – particularly all these animal shapes I’ve been creating. I think on those designs, I will add a wipe to the beginning, so they always print over a complimentary background.

    Here’s a video of that table running through some of its repetoire. I just turned it on and let it run.

    #42148

    Jeffeb3
    Participant

    Looks great Karl.

    Glad you got it working. Feel free to post stuff like that. To save other muddling coders the time, and I could look at it and see if there’s something to improve.

    I deployed the wiper this morning. It’s in the “wiper” tab. That should be self-explanatory.

    1 user thanked author for this post.
    #42154

    karltinsly
    Participant

    Thanks, Jeff. I have some tweaking to do, but I will definitely make my code available once I’ve solved a couple of challenges. I’m sure others would like their table to run autonomously too.

    Thanks for the wiper function.

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