For one of the Christmas presents this year I want to make a home made puzzle on the laser cutter.
My first plan was to take a picture of a Banyan Tree tree that I once visited in the center of Lahaina, Maui, HI. Convert the image in to a 2-bit black and white image and etch it in to some acrylic. Then I would cut the etched sheet of acrylic in to puzzle piece.
I ran into a few problems. Converting the image in to a 2-bit black and white image lost a lot of the detail of the original image making it harder to understand what it is a picture of. When I attempted to etch the image in on the acrylic it got even worse to the point where the etched image is almost unrecognizable.
The next version I went much simpler, simple animal silhouette bunched together with a puzzle piece overlay. It worked okay, but the problem was that I set the etching laser power to high and it almost cut thought the acrylic in some places. The lines are also not defined well enough and it becomes difficult to put together.
Any puzzle that is worth its weight in salt, needs a box. A box that has an image of the puzzle, piece count, and a small description. I found box design building website that will give you laser cutting designs to build boxes for your projects. As a test I created two dice of different sizes. They turned out great.