Updated: Nov 3, 2021
This week was my first time using my Silhouette and Zoom Precision tool to fill in an engraved design and I can NOT wait to show you how. The amount of possibilities this opens up are endless!
The key to this project for me was using the regular tip of my Zoom Precision tool. I wanted something that would provide a clean cut, ensuring that my words were
crystal clear; but I also wanted something that would smoothly fill in the engraving. (I was worried that having too fine of a tip wouldn’t create the overall filled look I was going for).
My biggest take-aways from this project?
1. The fill in feature is SO cool and Cricut needs to implement this asap. ;) And
2. Having the flexibility to customize which type of tip I want to use for the specific project is a game changer! I have yet to run into a tool that provide a 3 in 1 option other than the Zoom precision tool. (You really can’t beat that for the price).
If you’re ready to re-create this project, you’ll need the following materials -
Zoom Precision Tool (I used the normal tip)
Wooden Block Frame (I got mine from Hobby Lobby)
You can download the image for this design, here.
Once downloaded, follow the steps below to get this image set up in your Silhouette studio and to start engraving!
Part 1: Uploading your own image to Silhouette Studio
Being a Silhouette newbie, this portion took me way too long to figure out. Hopefully you’ll be able to navigate it easily with these simple steps:
Once in the Silhouette studio, click “File”, then “Open”. Select this previously downloaded image to open into your Silhouette studio.
Now that your image has been inserted into your studio, make sure that you resize the image to match the size of the material you’ll be engraving on
2. Highlight your image by clicking outside of the image and then dragging your cursor (still clicking) over the entire image.
3. Once it’s highlighted, select the “Trace” icon on the right side of your studio.(Highlighted in blue in the image below)
Click “Select Trace Area”
With that selected, use your mouse to draw a box around the image. (Just as we did above when we were highlighting the image). It should now highlight your image in yellow.
4. Now you can drag the original image away and it should leave a red, stencil like image of your uploaded artwork, without the background.
We just need the cut image (in red) so you can either delete your other image or move it to the side for now.
Part 2: Setting your image to engrave
Now it’s time to prep our artwork to fill in the engraving, not just outline the words. To do that, follow these simple steps:
Select the "line effects" icon towards the bottom of your right tool panel. (If you have an upgraded studio, you’ll likely have other icons below it).
For this project, I selected the "spiral effect". (On the far right) But ultimately, it’s up to you and what works for your project!
When you first select your effect, it’s not going to have that “filled in” look. It’s really important that you adjust the spacing to give it that look.
The lower the spacing, the tighter it will engrave. This will give it a more “filled in” look, but it will also take quite a bit longer to engrave. I did mine at .015, but again, do whatever works for the look your project is going for. See below for a spacing before and after pic.
Before adjusting the spacing:
After adjusting the spacing:
That’s all there is to it. Once you’ve adjusted those settings, we’re ready to adjust some machine settings and send it to engrave!
Part 3: Setting your machine to engrave with the Zoom Precision Tool
Before sending to your machine, make sure your settings are as follows:
Material: Cardstock, Plain
Load your Precision Tool, arrange your material on your mat, and you’re ready to go!
Tip: Make sure you utilize double sided tape to secure your material and ensure that it won’t move around. For a detailed walk through explaining how to arrange and secure your materials to your mat, click here.
Once my engraving was completed, I attached it to the wooden block, decorated with some ribbon, and used it to add some holiday cheer to my door wreath!
I used this project for a St. Patricks day decoration, but the best part? This technique and your Zoom Precision tool really can be used for any type of similar projects.
It took about an hour for my 5 x 7 sheet to fully engrave, and to be honest, I was kind of expecting it to have dulled my tip by then. I was shocked when I took it out and it looked just as sharp as when I had began. I have been so impressed with not only the functionality of these tips but the durability as well. Now time to test out the precision tip… stay tuned! ;)
Oh.. and Happy St. Patricks Day!