Desktop CNC Routers are making niche products viable

Desktop CNC routers are turning the traditional workshop into a mini factory for producing niche and custom products. Inventables customer Nick Homrich uses his X-Carve to precisely cut woods, plastics, and other materials, to manufacture unique lamps and products at his home workshop, happily leaving his sales job behind.

The X-Carve he purchased is a CNC router kit, kit comes in parts and he took about a half today to assemble it.  The Dewalt 611 router is mounted onto the X-Carve CNC platform enabling him to create high-quality products carving and cutting them in relatively little time. The X-Carve desktop CNC machines is compact enough for a home-based workshop, and it is sold at an affordable price. 

When Nick and his wife had their first child, Nick stayed home to raise his son. Being a stay-at-home dad didn't stop him from launching a business—in fact, it enabled Nick to start his own business. Nearly 10 years later, Nick is still designing unique lamps and products at his home workshop, happily leaving his sales job behind.  Below you can see Nick working on assembling one of his lamps.  He has set up an Etsy store where he sells his products.
Traditionally to operate a desktop CNC machine like the X-Carve you need CAD (computer aided design), CAM (computer aided manufacturing), and machine control software.  These three software tools sometimes referred to as a "tool chain"have been the defacto standard since the beginning of the industry.  In 2014 Inventables launched Easel software that combines CAD, CAM, and machine control into one easy to use web based program.  With Easel you can import SVG files from other vector design programs like Adobe Illustrator, Inkscape, or Corel Draw, DXF files from CAD programs like AutoCAD, .jpg and images that the software will covert to a vector file, and even g-code from CAM packages like MasterCAM, Aspire, or Fusion 360.

In the video below Nick tells his story and you get to see inside his X-Carve desktop CNC machine cranking out products in his workshop.


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