Box Joints with Shaper Origin

I just had a fun experience with that wonderful computer router, the Shaper Origin.

The ability to do box joints is built-in to the tool. Using the Vertical Workstation I had previously built for mortise and tenon joints, I gave box joints a try. After watching this video I started and within 40 minutes I had created the box.

The cuts are clean and the fit is beautiful.
That all the toolpaths were created in the tool is amazing.
If anybody wants to see this being done then just let me know.

Perhaps we could get a few people in a video chat and I can demo.

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Travis, how do you like that shaper? Have been thinking about it as my next tool.
Are you going to show that next Sat?

I think we’re really pressed already on Saturday but I’m open to doing it down the road.
Specialty CNC might be an interesting follow-on to the CNC Tour on the 25th.
Fifth axis, ShaperOrigin, automatic tool changing, are examples.


Travis, now that you’ve had the shaper for awhile, how do you like it? Was it worth it for you? Compared to you shapekko do you use it much?
Thx, Ian

My Origin does things I can’t do otherwise. Precision joinery is child’s play making simple to exotic mortise and tenon joints a snap. Carving recessesses for inlays and cutting perfect-fit inserts is easy. Milling on finished products such as cabinet tops, floors, etc is possible. Cutting large projects (4’x8’ ply for instance) are possible because there are no cutting area constraints. Also, this “CNC” can be taken anywhere to work its magic as it’s no larger than a big plunge router. Yes, I remain a fan.

That said, you have to really like these concepts and want to do them to justify: 1) the cost of the Origin, 2) the cost of the Workstation (a key feature), and 3) the time spent to learn a completely different workflow.

I justified the purchase because I have done projects that required a 4’x8’ bed and have no room for such a large CNC nor access to a large-bed CNC. Also, I’m a digital tools fan and had been watching the Origin since it was a prototype. I skipped the entire 1.0 product and only jumped in when 2.0 came out and I could make a workstation, the project that inspired Shaper to produce the Workstation.

Lately I’ve been enjoying projects from their open crowdsource community called the Shaper Hub and their professional designs Premium Projects. You can see one example below, it’s my three-sided version of their Lattice Lamp.

Want to know more? Check out the Shaper Sessions.
I watch these each Thursday at 4:00, evidence of my interest.
The Origin is a whole new category of tool so there’s much potential.

Cheers, Travis

Daughter pictures are from 20 years ago. :innocent:


Thank you very much Travis. Looks really interesting.

Travis, I forgot to ask, I looked like it uses SVG files? What options have you had and tried for designing projects/files for your Shaper?

I have to admit to having been a bit of a SVG-doubter. My rearing in vector creations was done with the DXF format. Only in the past few years have I learned to appreciate the superiority of SVG and have finally coming around. SGV is goods. :slight_smile:

This I mention because that’s the format Origin accepts for import.

For decades, the package I used for design was Corel Draw. I must have 20 versions across four computers as I’ve been on a upgrade treadmill for what seems like forever. When people have asked me for advice for a design package in the past couple years, I’ve been recommending Affinity Design because it keeps winning awards, it’s very capable and it is very reasonably priced. It runs on both Mac and Windows and its upgrade policy is reasonable … all point upgrades are free and you only get charged for major upgrades which hasn’t happened in the time I’ve used it.

What was your question? :laughing:

Oh, right, what’s my experience designing for the Origin? I’m still climbing Affinity Design curves but, wow, it’s powerful. Getting the vectors I need isn’t a big deal. The one thing I don’t do right is color code. Origin decides how to cut relative to vectors based on color. See below for the coding. I still do the cut choice on the Origin itself.

Hope this helps. Travis

Oh! If you’re interested in learning more about Affinity Designer check it out here. The prices is really good right now, 50% off. It’s one of the best values out there for $25!