Why I Wanted To Make A Plywood Cutout
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This was a straight-forward project. It only took a couple of hours to complete since my cut out was a simple bear shape. If you choose something more complex then your cutout may take longer to finish.
Finding The Right Image
Determining How Many Pages You Need
Printing Your Image to Size
Note: I’m a PC user so these instructions are for PCs.
I’m sure you can achieve the same results using a Mac… I just don’t know how.
A google search “print image on multiple pages on mac” will probably steer you in the right direction.
Changing The Page Setup
This is where the magic happens. With your picture open in Microsoft Paint, go into Page setup to tell it how many pages you want to use in your print out.
- Click the down arrow on the upper left menu
- Click the right arrow next to the Print option
- Click Page setup
- In the Page Setup dialog Select “Fit to:” in the Scaling section (the lower right box)
For our bear cut out I chose 4 pages wide by 3 pages high
In landscape, Each page is 11″ wide by 8.5″ high and the printer has .5″ margins (the box above the Scaling box in the dialog) so the bear print out would be about 40″ wide, 4 sheets x 10″ of printable paper (11″ paper – .5″ left margin – .5″ right margin).
Now that you changed your page setup, go ahead and Print Your Template Out
Tape the Pages Together
Now that you have your pages printed, it’s time to piece them together to create the paper template.
Tape the pages together, putting extra tape wherever the seems for the template meet.
Tip: Cut the margins off of the pages using scissors, to make it easier to tape them together.
Now You Have Your Paper Template
Now that it’s cut out, place the template on top of your plywood and trace it out.
First I used a pencil to trace it out, then I went over the pencil mark using a sharpie.
The sharpie is easier to see when cutting the plywood.
Cutting The Plywood Shape
Sorry I didn’t take any pictures of the plywood being cut. 🙁
I used a reciprocating saw to cut my bear shape since I was looking for a rough finish. If you want a cleaner finish then a jig saw or a roto-zip my be a better tool to use.
We now have our plywood cutout!
Sand and Paint and You’re All Done
Once sanded, add a couple of coats of paint and you’re cut out is all set.
Here’s my finished bear cutout. When I first painted it I chose a light color for contrast between it and the wall – but it looked too much like a polar bear… not what I was going for.
I then painted it a dark brown color, it looks more like a black bear than a polar bear now. 🙂
What Did You Think?
What I liked about this project is the possibilities it opened up. You can do any shape, any size using any material.
I’m not sure what my next cut out will be but I am sure that the bear was not my last one!
I hope this article shed some light on the possibilities and has your creative ideas going. Did you like it? What will you make a plywood cutout of? What would you do differently?
Share your thoughts in the comments below!