Use Options: Training only
Cost: Free to use. Select materials are available for purchase, or you may provide your own.
The Carvey CNC Router uses a bit to cut and engrave all kinds of materials. This page shows how to prepare a file for cutting and engraving and how to use the Carvey. Check out our Technology Instruction page for dates and times and to register.
Users may set their own jobs on the Carveys after completing a training and signing the CNC Router Safety Agreement, but must schedule them ahead of time at groupstudy.charlotte.edu. Any unscheduled jobs may be stopped and removed from the machine if someone else has scheduled that time. If the user does not check in within 15 minutes of the scheduled start time, the scheduled job will be automatically removed from the calendar.
The information conveyed here is minimal, as the Easel program walks the user through the options in real time, and includes troubleshooting guidelines. Please refer to the instructions within the Easel program, as they will be the most current. For additional information, please visit the Carvey Manual, and easy-to-use explanation of the entire process.
In Google Chrome or Firefox on one of the makerspace computers, go to easel.Inventables.com. It should be logged in to the Area 49 Easel account.
If it is not logged in, notify a Makerspace Monitor and have them log in for you.
This account is shared with all patrons who come in to use the CNCs. Do not create a project with contents that you would not want others to see.
Create a new project. In the upper left corner, click on “untitled” and name your project. Please include your NinerNET username in your project’s name.
New! Select your machine first (Carvey).
Select your material type and size, and begin designing in the left pane. The right pane will show what the design will look like. Keep an eye on this right pane. If you have selected a bit that is too large for the design, you will see very little of the design. Change the bit size until the design on the right appears as desired.
Carvey uses tabs to hold your project in place as it is cut away from the main material. Check out Carvey's Walkthrough Tutorial: Adding and Removing Tabs for more information.
Check out Carvey's Carving Bits 101 - Bit Basics page to determine which bit is best for your project. The bits available for our Carveys are:
For a visual guide to bits and their results, visit Carvey's Bit and Material Pairings Photos page.
1. In Inkscape, open the svg file and go to Path>Trace Bitmap and select all images in the file.Trace Bitmap converts the image into a vector.
Multiple bitmap scans can be used to vectorize with different colors.
2. Convert the image into a tool path which allows the Carvey to find a way to carve the image. Either select Path > Object to Path or select everything (Ctrl+A) and use Ctrl+Shift+C. If your svg contains text, first convert the text to a tool path by using Object to Path or Ctrl+Shift+C, or it may not be recognized properly.
3. Save the svg file as a Plain SVG file.
4. Return to Easel and Import the file to Easel by using File > Import SVG
For g-code, only specific commands can be used. This is done using post-processors. There are post-processors that can be used for specific programs that can be found under the “import g-code” option in Easel. Currently supported softwares include Autodesk Fusion 360, MeshCAM, Vetric V-Carve, Aspire, and Cut2D.
An official specifications list can be found here.