For my new workshop I tried to make tool organizers like this. http://foamfittools.com/
No problem to mill but you need the profile for the tools.
You can draw simple contours, but for special tools you need a better workflow.
I tried to take pictures on black, white and colored backgrounds.
Even on a light table.
The result was not satisfying. For normal tools it was OK. But if you have transparent or shiny material like chrome, then you have a problem.
But now I've found the perfect solution: you do not photograph the tool but the shadow of the tool!
The light source must be as small as possible, ie, point-like. Perfect here is a single LED.
If you have nothing better, the LED lamp from your smartphone is OK.
This point light source results in a sharp, precise silhouette. On a small screw you can still see every thread.
And it works with any material. Whether reflective or even transparent.
Since I need this more than once, I built an apparatus.
You can of course also place a glass plate between two chairs, LED at the bottom, shadows on the ceiling. The CAD images show the principle.
I photograph the tools individually and make the final layout for the drawer in VCarve.
I have a glass 300x400mm from a frameless picture holder.
This size is then also the reference during subsequent vectorization.
To take pictures, I use a webcam (Microsoft LiveCam Studio) which is centered on the glass plate.
This will save me the additional workfor perspective correction.
The camera can of course also positioned outside of the glass plate and thus use the entire surface.
The camera resolution I have chosen is very low: 960 x 544 pixels!
This is more than sufficient and you do not have as many details in the image. The vectorization then proceeds much faster and better.The complete workflow in detail:The pictures
- Place tool on glass plate
- Take shadow picture
Repeat steps for all your toolsVectorizing in VCarve
I have a VCarve project for Vectorizing
The job size is 300x400mm (like the glass plate)
- Import photo in VCarve
- Scale Photo so that the glass plate in the picture has the size of the job. You can see it better if you us guide lines at the corners ob the job
- Trace bitmap (black / white)
- Fit curves to vectors (0.5mm)
- Mirror (do not forget, as some tools are asymmetrically!)
- Enlarge contours by 1mm (with offset function)
- Save your workThe second VCarve project is for milling
The job size is the size of the tool drawer
Copy tool vectors from VCarve import project around the job area
Arrange the tools as desired until one drawer is filled.
Now create toolpath for the the required depth.
To make it easier, I have created a layer and template for each depth. (6mm, 8mm, 10mm .....)
You just have to select the contour and then use 'movo to layer'.
For example: layer_10mm)
If you have a tool with different deep (Like screwdriver handle and blade)
Then separate it into 2 contours with the help of 'node editing'
It sounds more complicated than it is. It goes very quickly in reality.
I cut the whole thing with a cutter for carbon. Full feed, full spindle speed. Almost everything with 6mm router. Only for very small tools I've used 4mm.CAUTION:
After milling leave everything on the machine and insert the tools for testing. Corrections are now more easily because clamping, zero point, etc. are still correct.
With the result, I am very satisfied.
For European users: You can buy the two-tone foam here http://www.gummifritz24.de
It is difficult to explain if English is not your native tongue.
But I hope you understand everything.