What Can A CNC Router Make?

Right now, few craft tools are hot as a CNC router. You might be due an upgrade on yours and want to get the most out of a new model or are dipping your toes into the pool of these creative devices but there seem to be endless possibilities and potential with these products. Before you consider what you might make next, you need to be sure that the model you have is capable of cutting the material you want. When you are sure, you can start to think about making some of the following unique crafts.

Things To Remember When Using A CNC Router

Not all machines are made equal which is never more true than with a CNC router. Remember that you are in control so you need to adjust the settings accordingly as the CNC router won’t do this for you. With certain tasks, it is better to slow the RPM down and ensure the feed rate is just right. Go too fast and your cuts won’t be of the high quality they could be and you might be dealing with broken parts and need to start over again.

You should have a good idea of what your CNC router is capable of so when dealing with tougher materials you can make the relevant adjustments. If you are looking for a new machine, even if it is your first, then it can be a good idea to experiment with different materials and make basic cuts to get a feel for the machine first.

So, What Can I Make With A CNC Router?

Now that you have your materials, a quality machine, and are ready to get started, here are some of the possible designs you can make with a CNC router.

A Custom Guitar Body

That’s right, any budding musician or creative can make a custom guitar body with a CNC router. Of course, you need to have a router that is big enough to accommodate the materials required to make a full-size model but failing that it is feasible to make a smaller scale version instead. An electric guitar is a popular project but one that takes some skill. Still, it is also one of the most rewarding when you finally get to string it up having made or purchased the other parts.

Wood Sign With Engraving

This is probably one of the most popular crafts for a CNC router and a good project to start with as you get used to the different capabilities. The router you choose should have a variety of customizable settings so you can choose the spacing as well as the font as it engraves a wooden canvas, complete with a border to make a unique gift.

Raised Letters

This is usually another one for a wooden sign and can be a neat way of carving your kid’s name and sticking it on their door. The raised letters are unique but a little more challenging yet easy once you get used to the settings.


When you have a bit of experience behind you, some projects are so enticing, you just have to give it a try. Making a paddleboard is arguably one of the most satisfying. Carve the struts and the ribs separately and although it will require the use of a large CNC router when you have waterproofed the finished article, you’ll be proud as punch.

Granite Engraving

Use a diamond-tipped stylus to etch these eye-catching designs that you can display around the house, make it part of your kitchen tiling, or give as a gift. You don’t have to stick to granite though as a diamond stylus can be a useful tool for etching steel or glass depending on what you have available.

Children’s Puzzle

This is one for those with young ones in the family but you can use a CNC router to carve animal shaped puzzles with the grooves to make it challenging but fun. Not only does this help to develop basic motor skills in a child but it can become a pleasant display item in a nursey once sanded and treated.

Desk Organizer

You can be as creative and use curved shelves to make something a little unique or stick to something a little neater and make stackable shelves to keep your desk uniformed. Whatever style you go for, a CNC router can make a desk organizer that slides together without the need for screws when you find the right design.

Does A CNC Router Come With All The Software I Need?

To make any of the above the CNC router you are looking at needs to have the relevant software. Most of the time, the software is compatible with what you have available but if your operating system isn’t up to scratch then a lot of the time, and update is a quick fix that helps to get things going. It is just as important to look for a product that has the cutting space, RPM, and versatility you need so you to know it should be capable of making the crafts you want it to.

What Do I Need To Consider When Buying A CNC Router?

Before you buy all the materials for that project you have in mind, it is best to make sure you have the space to accommodate a CNC router. Some of them can be sizeable units, especially if you want to make some of the larger projects. To make a paddleboard, for example, you are going to need a commercial-grade CNC router rather than one that is best used for small crafts.

Another consideration is your budget. If you want to make your own guitar the spec of CNC router is going to set you back more than a beginner’s model. Still, if you, are getting started and want to experiment with something more compact and easier to get on with then there are plenty of excellent beginners CNC routers available.

Because they can be pricey, you might want to get something bigger than what you need right now. as you progress and become more confident in a smaller CNC router. can seem quite limited which is why a lot of people end up making another purchase eventually.