Roland Dr. Engrave Tutorial (1) ─  CNC Text Engraving (Beginner’s Level)

Roland Dr. Engrave’ Tutorial (1) CNC Text Engraving- banner

Previously, we have published a demo video about making our logo with CNC 3D engraving. You can do the same if you have a 2.5D CNC engraver or a 3D CNC milling machine. Here is a simple tutorial starting from CNC text engraving with Roland Dr.Engrave.

If you buy a Roland machine, you will get their CAM software and their licenses.

But some old software, including Dr.Engrave and 3D Engrave, is free to download from support.rolanddga.com. Of course, the software is designed for Roland’s machines but you can change the RML-1 file to a G code file with our free rml2gcode converter. It should be much easier than generate G code in Inkscape.

support.rolanddga.com
support.rolanddga.com

Downloading the install and update files, you can then install Dr.Engrave on your Windows PC. Launched it, you will see the layout below. The software works in 2D because that is enough for CNC engraving texts and patterns with a fixed depth of cut. It is not necessary to design in any 3D CAD software, that saving costs and efforts. So, you can put more money and power into testing different materials.

Screenshot of Roland Dr. Engrave
Screenshot of Roland Dr.Engrave

Creating a Text Tool Path

First, use Draw Text to create a text object. You can find the tool in the toolbar as shown below. Then, type a text to the canvas as you like.

Select Draw Text tool in tool bar
Select Draw Text tool in the toolbar
Typing text
Typing text

Second, use Fill to generate an engraving tool path. The material inside the text contour will be removed. The blue lines represent the generated tool path.

Select Fill tool in the toolbar
Select Fill tool in the toolbar
Fill options
Fill options
Generated tool paths inside the text contour
Generated tool paths inside the text contour

Third, use Print… (Ctrl+P) to export the design to be a Printer job.

To preview the machining results, click “Print as a file” in the print dialogue.

Dr.Engrave Menu: File > Print
Menu: File > Print
Print dialogue
Print dialogue
Save dialogue
Save dialogue

Verify the tool path

https://youtu.be/3DQOV87hoKQ

Now open Roland MODELA to simulate the cutting results.

Screenshot of Roland Virtual MODEDLA
Screenshot of Roland Virtual MODEDLA

First, use File > Open (Ctrl+O) to load the previous tool path file to the program.

Virtual MODELA Menu: File > Open
Virtual MODELA Menu: File > Open
Choose file to open
Choose file to open

Second, go to Simulation > Tool Setup… to define your cutting tool. For example, we choose a square end mill as the tool and 3 mm as the blade diameter.

Virtual MODELA Menu: Simulation > Tool Setup
Virtual MODELA Menu: Simulation > Tool Setup
Tool setup dialogue
Tool setup dialogue

Press Redo Cutting, it will simulate the results with the corresponding parameters.

Select Redo Cutting in toolbar
Select Redo Cutting in the toolbar
Result made with 3 mm square end mill
Result made with 3 mm square end mill

Third, you can obtain different results with the same tool path by changing the tool setup. For example, we choose (V-shaped) engraving tool this time. You can input the tip size and the blade angle according to the specification of your cutters.

Tool setup for the V-shaped engraving tool
Tool setup for the V-shaped engraving tool
Result made with the V-shaped engraving tool
Result made with the V-shaped engraving tool

Bevel edges are obtained this time. You can switch to 3D simulation to better verify the 3D results.

3D simulated results of the CNC engraved text
3D simulated results of the CNC engraved text

If you have any issues about the machine, you can visit our page FAQ for Roland Modela MDX-20 to find more solutions or leave your questions in the comment section of the FAQ page.

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