George Vondriska

Engraving Letters and Artwork with a CNC Router

George Vondriska
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Duration:   33  mins

A CNC router provides a great way to do precise engraving of letters and artwork. Getting everything to look great involves properly handling the artwork, and correctly setting up the engraving tool path.

Importing clip art

You can engrave almost any piece of clip art that you find on the web. Importing your clip art into VCarve software is easy; we’ll show you how to do it. Once the clip art is open in VCarve, you’ll learn how to change it to vectors so the CNC router can “see” it.

The lettering

You’ll find a wide array of fonts available within the VCarve software. You’ll learn how to incorporate text in your design, how to bend the text to match a curve, and how to create the engraving tool path to cut the letters.

Creating an oval

Laying out a perfect oval by hand can be difficult, but it’s easy to do the lay out and make the cuts using software and a CNC router. You’ll learn how to create an oval, and how to stretch and shrink it to fit your design.

Through cuts

An easy way to get the outside shape of your project perfect, and have great cut quality along the edge, is to cut it out with the CNC router. Through cuts like this require the use of tabs to hold with work in place. You’ll learn how to create the tabs, and how to position them on your project.

More on CNC routers

If you’d like additional insight into using VCarve software, have a look at our video that provides CNC machine programming tips. You can also have a look at some additional entry level design work you can do on a benchtop CNC.

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5 Responses to “Engraving Letters and Artwork with a CNC Router”

  1. Doroethie Hicks

    Thank you for this tutorial. When I create a vcarve with wording, it states that it will take over an hour, close to 2 hours to carve. Is there a better setting in Vcarve to shorten the time? Thank you

    • Customer Service

      Hello Doroethie,

      Thank you for the question, I have received the reply from the expert and I forwarded it to your email address: please check your email in box.

      If you have any other concerns, please contact us at 1-855-253-0822, or chat with us on our site.

      We greatly appreciate your business!


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  2. Mark

    Just got a CNC. Made lots of wooden flags. Now want to make wooden plaque but the lettering turns out terrible. Would love to know how to fix it.

    • Customer Service

      Hello Mark!

      If you could send us an email at:, we’d like to take a closer look. Please mark in the email that George requested an email be sent via WWGOA comment online and we’ll go from there!

      Thank you!

      Woodworkers Guild of America Video Membership

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