Christmas is fast approaching and I still have not made any significant decorations or reminders of the true meaning of Christmas yet.
Christmas was a day chosen to commemorate the birthday of our Lord, Jesus Christ, never mind any inaccuracies in the actual date. In celebrating His birthday, the meaning of a Savior born to save all mankind must not be forgotten in the midst of all festivities and commercialization.
I did try cutting out a nativity scene on phenolic resin board, but the project was not successful due to the fact that my milling tool was too large for the size of the work piece. Furthermore, I broke a thin milling tool bit while attempting the project.
I happened to have a piece of softboard which had been used as a base for a icing cake. It was round in shape and I thought it would look nice if I could engrave a Nativity Scene on it.
I also wanted to add in a verse from the bible to make it meaningful. I found it in Matthew 1:22-23 which says, “All this happened in order to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet: The virgin will conceive and bear a son, and he will be called Emmanuel which means: God-with-us.”
The prophet who foretold about 700 years before the coming of Jesus Christ was Isaiah who said, “Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: The Virgin is with child and bears a son and calls his name Immanuel.” – Isaiah 7:14.
I could not fit in all the words in that verse within the spaces of the scene, so I just used the last few words which I considered very meaningful.
The video below showed the milling process.
Overall, it was successful.
But I had no way to display the nativity scene. I needed a stand. So I searched around and found a good design, dug in my store for a piece of plywood and got busy designing, testing and then cutting it out with my CNC machine. It took 3 attempts before I got it right. Below was the video of the process:
After a few days of display, I felt like not completely satisfied with it. I felt the engraving was too shallow. Still I was quite hesitant to modify it because it would involve some adjustment to the position and a re-engraving over the previous lines. If I did not do it properly, I would ruin the whole piece. The risk was there.
But eventually, I made up my mind to do a re-engraving. I wanted to cut it deeper. So I set up to align my home position of the work piece. It took several steps of adjustment before I got it right.
Well, I got it re-engraved deeper. I think it looked better, although the lettering were a bit merged, but still they were legible.