Beta Project: Triceratops
Posted by
Sammamish, WA 
Joined Oct 2, '15 

For yet another frivolous project I wanted to pay homage to my childhood memories of wooden dinosaur models and make something decorative for my office. I started by going to Harbor Freight and picking up a cheap wooden dinosaur model of a triceratops.

I then scanned that in and traced the pieces I wanted to use in illustrator. I find that putting the picture on one layer and locking it makes it easy to trace on another layer and then you can just delete or hide the image layer later.

I ignored the slots at first and then used rectangles in their place so I could later adjust the width of the rectangles to match the thickness of my material. I opted for the 1/4" plywood so set them to .226" in the end which fit pretty well. My first cut was pretty close, but I had to redo a couple of pieces. The first one was the central part that holds the face pieces together as it was a bit too wide in the back and was blocking other slots from being accessed. It was fairly simple to pull the corners in and re-save. Next was the neck bone as I needed to adjust the angle to fit properly to display the head better. Last was just the frill around the skull because I’d gotten ahead of myself and glued it to the previous neck when I was testing and needed a new one for the new neck :slight_smile:

With the “bones” out of the way I moved on to the mounting plate that would
hold it on the wall. I got to thinking about how fancy plaques I’d seen out of thick wood in the past had key holes on the back where the nail/screw would slide in and hold it flush against the wall. Since I was planning on doing a 3 tiered cut to look fancy anyhow, I decide to try a keyhole cut on the wall side and create a void under it on the second layer which would be covered by the top layer.

It turned out nicely and would probably work well for other projects as well. I also used a hole for the neck bone to both attach it to the mount as well as align the 3 sheets that make it up. Here’s a few of the finished product. I put some natural stain on it to bring out the wood grain a bit. Mostly helped the mounting plate, but the bones look a bit nicer with it as well.

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