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I got my hot wire foam factory tools last weekend and had a blast cutting a huge 4x8 foot two inch thick sheet from Lowe's in to tombstones.

Now they're blank slates and I'm not sure the best way to carve letters into them. I didn't get the engraver BTW.

How deep do I cut for good contrast and readability? How do you transfer from a template to the tombstone? What are common fonts people use?

Any other advice?
 

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Everyone is different when it comes to cutting out letters...

I would print off what I want the tombstone to say make sure you size the lettering you want...then I would tape it in place on the tombstone. Next I would take a pen and trace over with a little bit more pressure than I normally would on a regular piece of paper. This will leave an indent of the letters in the foam. Next I use an X-acto knife to cut out the letters...I go into the foam at a 45 degree angle it leaves a VERY clean cut...make sure your blade is SHARP and NEW.

Hope this helps...
 

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Lil Ghouliette and I just print our names, dates and epitaphs off the computer. We generate name with a random name generator that is online. I would agree that you need to print off your lettering not only to test for size of font but for size of the line fitting in the width of the stone. We use a dremel tool to carve our lettering after tracing them onto the foam. I have heard of some people printing out the lettering on a lazer printer, printing it mirror image and pressing the ink onto the foam using a warm iron, but I have not tried this method yet.
 

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Oh, and one more suggestion I would give you, if you print more than one sheet a computer paper per line of print, repeat some of the saying so you can line up the paper. (Overlap the repeating letters) So that the rest of the line remains in a straight line in comparison to the beginning of the line.
 

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Funeral Crasher
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Everyone is different when it comes to cutting out letters...

I would print off what I want the tombstone to say make sure you size the lettering you want...then I would tape it in place on the tombstone. Next I would take a pen and trace over with a little bit more pressure than I normally would on a regular piece of paper. This will leave an indent of the letters in the foam. Next I use an X-acto knife to cut out the letters...I go into the foam at a 45 degree angle it leaves a VERY clean cut...make sure your blade is SHARP and NEW.

Hope this helps...
This is exactly how I do it too. It's slow going, but the stone turns out very nice!
 

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Defender of Blucky Honor
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I use a dremel tool with a router bit. If the RPM's are too high it will melt the foam. So I use the middle to lower settings. The depth believe it or not does not have to be too deep. I also heard and seen people use a glue gun to make letters (they press the hot tip into the foam).
 
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