All creatures great and small

After completing my set of anatomically correct dinosaurs from MakeCNC, (the other three are in my office already), I then decided to make a pteradactyl as large as I can fit on my machine.  Cut from 12mm thick MDF, it has a full wingspan of 3.3m, and physically measures 2m tip to tip, and 1.2m long.  Despite being skeletal, it is realtively heavy!

It is destined for my daughter’s science class, to hang up in the classroom.

dino-1It really seemed like bones as we put it together.

It would be cool to do one of the anatomically correct ones to the same scale!  I really like the one that has its tail up in the air, which is the velociraptor.  Be awesome to have one of those life sized.  (That isn’t unrealistic, as they are relatively small as we saw in Jurassic Park).  Might scare the bejesus out of any unwarranted visitors in the middle of the night.  The plans only come with 3mm, so I’d have to accurately scale it to suit the 12mm thick material – job for another day.

Back to the large pterodactyl, (called a Flugsaurier Archosaurier on the MakeCNC website, which is German for Pteranodon, a type of pterodactyl).  It took 3 sheets of 12mm x 900×600 MDF, which is not too bad, considering the size!  It was cut with the Amana Tool 3/8″ solid carbide compression bit 46172 from I still ran it at 40mm/sec, but with a 3.25mm DOC.  Tabs were 10mmx10mm (still 3D, which made them easier to cut by hitting them with a chisel) to hold the pieces in place during the cut.

What to do next……decisions, decisions.

Anatomically correct dinosaurs

I’m still enjoying (a bit too much) doing nesting operations on the Torque CNC.  These latest ones are from MakeCNC‘s anatomically correct range of plans – there are 8 in total (so I still have a few to make).

Initially making them out of 3mm MDF before trying anything more substantial.  I did try to make the Dimetrodon out of aluminium, but I didn’t fully adjust for material movement, and when one of the very long pieces of waste between the back spines moved to the wrong side of the router bit, well, let’s just say the router bit got suddenly much shorter. Me making better choices of tab placement, size and number would have made all the difference.

Even so, these look awesome in MDF (especially with the added quality of Kara Rasmanis’ photos). (Click through for a larger version)







These take a bit longer to cut out – a lot more edge distance, and going slower to avoid bit breakage (still managed to do that to one of the bits before getting the speed right).  The bit I used is the 1/16″ straight, 2 flute cutter from 45190.  This gave a fine degree of detail.  I am interested in the 3/32″ bits for a bit more substance when that level of detail is not needed, but still having a bit under 3mm diameter.

For those who are interested, there is an interesting link here describing pterodactyls, what they were (and weren’t), including that like the brontosaurus, they are actually a number of genera that have all been called pterodactyls, rather than it referring to an individual genera.

I need to change the name of my office to Jurrasic Park – it would be more appropriate!

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