"One Perfect Part at a Time"

Lithophane Making

Here is my latest creation. The carving is called a Lithophane. In the first picture you can see that it is a reverse relief carving. The darkest details are raised in the design The material is 1/4 inch thick Corian produced by DuPont. Its the stuff from which counter tops and wall covering is made. As it turns out, it is very easy to engrave.

The second picture is the same carving with back-light. As you can see, when illuminated from behind, it shows a very high detail gray scale photograph. You can even see the reflection in my glasses! The detail is outstanding.

In this example the photo area is about 4 x 5.75. Just the right size for the CnC Taig Micro-Mill. I don’t have a step-by-step example in my hobby web site yet, but I will soon. Probably this week end. I’ll post a link here.

What is hard to believe is all I used was two ball end mills to machine this picture. The first was a 1/8 inch mill for roughing out, followed by a 1/16 inch mill for the finish pass. That was almost 1000 lines. Total machining time was about 2.5 hours.

Update 4/20/08:

As promised, The Hobbyist Machine Shop has the lithophane making process in the web site. From the menu bar select “Projects” then select “Lithophane” from the drop down. Enjoy! ~ Dan’l

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