Carvey desktop CNC machine
Make beautiful, durable, and functional objects from wood and plastic with our Carvey desktop CNC machine.
Interested in learning more? Email [email protected] with your questions.
How does it work?
The Carvey uses bits to precisely cut and engrave material up to 0.9″ thick. The process begins with a solid piece of material and a design—created by you in Easel, a free, cloud-based app. Software translates your visual design into code that tells the machine where and how to carve the material to make the final product.
Begin by creating your design in Easel, then come in to carve it with staff assistance during an appointment in the Makery.
Access to the Makery is available to SWAN library cardholders in good standing. To make an appointment to use the Carvey or learn more, email [email protected].
Patrons must sign the Carvey User Agreement prior to making their first project with the machine.
What do I need?
To get started making with the Carvey CNC, you will need:
- Easel — This free, web-based app sends your project to the machine. Easel is accessible from any computer with an internet connection; simply visit easel.inventables.com to make an account and start designing. Everything you make in Easel will be saved online, so you can access it from any computer.
- Material to cut — The Carvey can work with:
- Wood, plywood, MDF, linoleum, and some types of plastics (cast acrylic, HDPE, and expanded PVC)
- Max material size: 12″ long x 8″ wide x 0.9″ thick (Note: Very thin materials may not be carve-able. We recommend a minimum thickness of 1/16″ (0.0625″).)
- Users can purchase material from the Library at cost (see available materials here) or bring their own material, which must be flat and of even thickness. User-provided materials must approved by staff prior to cutting.
- A design to cut — Projects can be created from scratch in Easel, or you can import an SVG file made in a program like Inkscape or Adobe Illustrator. The design process involves creating and arranging text and images, choosing cut types and depths, and selecting the right bit(s) to use to match your material and the level of detail in the design.
Resources & instructions
Information on the Carvey and project ideas:
- Carving Bits 101 — Choosing the right bit for your project
- Projects from Inventables — A collection of projects to inspire your designs, created by Inventables staff as well as community contributors (Note: Not all projects on this page are compatible with the Carvey; some are intended for larger machines.)