Carving cedar on the Mill One

Here’s a quick project done on the Mill One, made from some blocks of cedar that Chris had found at Home Depot.

We had gotten a new 1/4″ 2 flute upcut bit as a gift that I hadn’t tried out yet, and I felt like a box would be a good project to try it out on. With the geometry of this box, most of the work is done carving out the inside of the box, and so a large bit which could remove a lot of material per pass was perfect.

I started off my surface milling a few mm into the wood, getting the thickness of the piece to about 1.375in. I did this because the top of the wood was slightly curved, and I wanted the top of the box to be flat.

In the beginning I had put the feedrate at around 700-800mm/min, but it felt to slow at that rate, so I bumped it up to about 1000mm/min. I think if I had kept the same feedrate, it would have given it a slightly nicer finish, but after some light sanding, the results would be indistinguishable.

One of the quirks about milling solid wood is that it will leave burrs, especially with softer wood like fir or pine. Cedar is a fairly light wood, and so there was a small amount of fuzzing at the edges, but it was easily picked or sanded off. Having a sharp bit certainly helped, and I did vary the router speed between 12,oooRPM to 16,000RPM to experiment, and found somewhere in between worked the best.

The box was drawn in Onshape and the gcode was create with Kiri:Moto, which you can add as an application in Onshape. Check out the design here: https://cad.onshape.com/documents/b27ffd01f4c9a086501d6171/w/13922f3e1399a3ddda8572bf/e/4a509eaa67fd88133009dc32

I have designed a lid for the box as well, and will be milling one out some other time.

You should be able to download the design and modify it to fit the dimensions you like. This box is designed to be made using router bits 1/4″ and smaller. If you want to use a larger router bit, increase the inner radius of the box to accommodate.

Have project ideas you want us to try out? Feel free to reach out to us!