So you’ve been thinking about getting a Cricut. Or maybe you’ve already bought one, and now you’re wondering what to make with it.
Well, you can use this machine to turn paper, card, or leather into signs, model airplanes, and even jewelery.
But what does a Cricut do? And can it really cut through wood? Also, what kind of Cricut maker wood projects can you create anyway?
If you want to discover the answers to those questions (and so much) then keep reading…
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What Is A Cricut Machine?
A Cricut is a desktop tool that lets you easily create designs out of a range of different materials, such as paper, fabric and wood.
Using a computer, or even a phone, you send your model and craft designs to the Cricut.
And kind of like a printer, the Cricut turns those digital designs into real life cut outs.
Inside the Cricut is an easily interchangeable rotary cutter bit – kind of similar to dremel or router bits. And this rotary bit can cut, score, or engrave directly onto wood.
There are a number of various Cricut versions out there, such as the Cricut Joy and Air 2. However, the best Cricut machine for cutting through wood is the Cricut Maker.
Can The Cricut Air 2 Cut Balsa Wood? In theory, yes. However, in practice, that’s a whole other story. You see, if you keep that balsa wood stock-still and stable, the Air 2 can cut it. However, don’t be surprised if you find that your rotary tool keeps getting caught in those wood fibers.
What Wood Can You Use With A Cricut Maker?
The Cricut works best with thin sheets of pliable wood. Generally, the types of wood you would use for whittling and carving.
Also, the wood needs to be cut very thin – all without losing its ability to take on definition.
So, that leaves you with two main choices when it comes to the Cricut; Balsa Wood and Basswood.
These two types of timber can easily handle the clean carving style of the Cricut. And they can also take on a coat of paint for decoration. However, it is worth noting that, neither wood takes on stains or finishes evenly.
What Is The Difference Between Basswood And Balsa Wood? Besides both of them being classed as hardwood, there isn’t much to connect these two different wood types. Basswood is harder, heavier and denser than Balsa wood.
Can The Cricut Maker Engrave Wood?
Wood engraving involves printing images onto lumber – as opposed to carving them out of the wood instead. And the Cricut can handle engraving with ease – even more so than cutting.
Plus, engraving gives you more wood options. Beyond engraving Balsa and Basswood, you can also engrave wood veneer.
Can The Cricut Maker Cut Birch Plywood? Baltic Birch Plywood is used to make everything from cabinets and desks, to kids toys and musical instruments. But a Cricut Maker – even one using the ‘Deep Point’ tool – cannot smoothly cut through Birch Plywood.
Cricut Maker Wood Thickness (Explained)
When we use a Cricut Maker to cut wood, we have to keep in mind that this machine can only take on thin sheets – not thick boards.
As a result, you can’t really buy wood for the Cricut from your local hardware store.
For example, if you want to use Basswood, you are going to have to purchase ‘Cricut Basswood’. This is a Cricut branded material that has been cut and thinned down to a usable size.
So lets take a quick look at what thickness levels the Cricut Maker can cut;
Cricut Maker Balsa Wood Thickness
The Cricut Maker machine can handle 1/32 inch and 1/16 inch thick balsa wood sheets. And those sheets must have near faultless, knot-free wood grain.
Can The Cricut Maker Cut 3mm Wood? No it can’t. It can handle thicknesses of up to 2.4mm, whether it is engraving onto (or cutting through) wood.
Cricut Maker Basswood Thickness
Similarly to Balsa Wood, the Cricut can take on Basswood sheets that are up to 1/16 of an inch.
But, any old Basswood sized and planed down at the local store simply won’t cut it (literally). You will need to buy Cricut Basswood that has been exclusively created for the Cricut Maker.
If you are wondering where you can go to buy wood for your Cricut projects, then you can get some great prices for this specially-cut wood over on Amazon.
7 Clever Cricut Maker Projects
Wooden Name Puzzle
By Nat’s Crafty Life
Get more out of your machine by using it to create puzzle games for the kids to enjoy.
By Andrew Jones
It’s time to think out side the box… by making one.
This is one of my favorite Cricut craft ideas. With a bit of creativity, you can turn your 2D plans into 3D brilliance! You can use both Balsa and Basswood as your material of choice with this project as well.
By Love Create Celebrate
You can make a great-looking Basswood door-hanger with your Cricut maker.
Quick Tip: If you plan on hanging these outside, make sure that you properly seal and finish that Basswood.
Balsa Wood Bunnies
By Nat’s Crafty Life
Bunnies are fluffy floofballs of fun. So why not have a go at making this fuzzy animal project.
By Domestic Heights
Let your creative fly by making jewelry with the Cricut.
This particular project also opens up the possibility of turning your Cricut Maker into a Money Maker. How? By selling your earrings and other crafts via craft stores such as Amazon Handmade and Etsy.
To learn more about how you can sell your wood crafts from home, click here to check out my article: 12 Profitable Woodworking Things To Make And Sell From Home.
By Cut N Make Crafts
That morning commute to work can be boring, but thanks to this project, it doesn’t have to look that way too.
Instead, you can make a couple of these decorations to hang from your rear view mirror.
Wood Burn with the Singe Quill
By Corinne Blackstone
Wood burning, (also known as Pyrography), involves engraving images into wood using a superheated stencil.
And the Cricut Maker takes all the hard work out of turning burn-marks into beautiful art.
Pyrography.” Brewer’s Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. London: Chambers Harrap, 2012. Credo Reference. Web. 2 Mar 2015.