100+ CNC Project Ideas to Try in 2023
With projects for CNC beginners & pros

Ever asked yourself the question: what can I make with my CNC machine? Here are 100+ ideas you can try with the material of your choice (wood, metal, carbon, etc.), and different levels of complexity for beginners and pros alike. 

                  In many cases, you’ll find a link to the CAD & G-Code files available for free. 

                  Let yourself be inspired by the below list, and make sure to share your creations with us so we can pass them forward. We will regularly update this article with new CNC files & ideas.  

                  Interior decoration & furniture CNC projects

                  • Deer bike rack

                  Sometimes it feels like we never have enough space - how about creating a storage space for your bike like this beautiful deer bike rack? 

                  Project files by Sufu available under Creative Commons license on Thingiverse.

                  • Vinyl record holder

                  This is a great CNC project for beginners looking to experiment with their machine and prepare some gifts for their friends and family. 

                  Project files available on Mekanika (G-Code & Fusion 360 project).

                  • Metal Voronoi bo

                  A metallic box made with a CNC milling machine

                  You don’t want to create a simple box? Here’s one that can be a bit more of a challenge, both due to the cool Voronoi design of its faces, and the material it’s made of. 

                  Step-by-step instructions and files are available on Instructables thanks to Sweet Honey Spot.

                  • Star-shaped candle holders

                  These simple candle holders are another good project to try your hand at CNC milling - they are star-shaped and can contain a tealight candle. 

                  Project files available on Mekanika.

                  • Pet toys basket

                  This is a project for dog and cat lovers who have bought dozens of toys for their favorite house pet. You’ll find a few different types of containers in this list, but that's the beauty of CNC machines: the possibilities for customization are endless. 

                  Project files available on Scrollsaw Workshop.

                  • Flat pack Christmas trees

                  flatpack Christmas trees made on a CNC machine

                  If you want something different from the traditional organic Christmas trees, these flat pack alternatives can be made in different sizes and materials. 

                  Project files available on Mekanika

                  • Christmas tree ornaments

                  • 3D wooden bow-tie

                  Project files available on Mekanika

                  • Combined stepladder & stool

                  This is actually a project made by our friend @panama_workshop, a Maker from Lithuania, with his Mekanika EVO CNC machine.

                  Stepladder / stool made on a CNC machine on a colorful background with a blue & yellow rug

                  • Skateboard wall hooks

                  We actually hesitated to put this project in the "Art Pieces" section below because some skateboards are worthy of museums. But anyhow, this is another simple CNC project for beginners.

                  Project files available on Mekanika

                  • Flat pack coffee table

                  This is a more complex project that uses additional tools on top of a CNC machine, but you’ll have to admit the result is pretty cool.

                  Step-by-step guide available on Instructables thanks to Evan and Katelyn. 

                  • Shelves

                  • Money box

                  • Tie holder

                  • Door holder

                  • Picture frame

                  • Book ends

                  • Paper towel holder

                  How about this Viking-inspired paper towel holder by Epic Workshop? 

                  • Design lamp frame

                  • Coat hooks

                  • Giraffe lamps

                  • Glasses stand

                  • Wooden vase (like this one?)

                  • Wall clock

                  • Keyholder

                  • Mantel blocks

                  • Toilet paper holder

                  CNC files available on Thingiverse thanks to Zenziwerken. 

                  Cooking & kitchen accessories 

                  • Jam, honey or spices display

                  Honey display shelf milled with a CNC machine
                  I personally fell a little bit in love with this beautiful project for a honey jar display - but you could easily imagine adapting the instructions & plans to fit whatever you want to put in there, whether we’re talking jam, honey or non-food items. 

                  Step-by-step instructions available on Instructables thanks to Jack Hewett. 

                  • Cutting board

                  Another nice CNC project for beginners - try milling this simple cutting board that will delight any cooking enthusiast. 

                  CNC Files available on Mekanika

                  Or if you want to do something more advanced, and you’re a Star Wars fan, you might like this Death Star cutting board CNC project, courtesy of Steve Moseley on Instructables.

                  • Carved tea box

                  This one is for tea lovers, with another great step-by-step guide by JohnW539 on Instructables. 

                  Here’s another holiday-themed CNC project that can be a good fit for beginners - this deer bottle holder will look great on your Christmas dinner table. 

                  Project files available on Mekanika (G-Code & Fusion 360 project)

                  • Coffee clip and spoon

                  Coffee Clip & Spoon - CNC project idea 
                  This is one we could use in Mekanika’s office, as we are fervent coffee drinkers - another nice, simple CNC project that you’ll use in your everyday life. 

                  Here’s where you’ll find the CNC files & instructions on the Instructables website, courtesy of Nickolae.
                  • Utensils

                  • Beer caddy

                  Picture of a beer caddy made with a CNC machine

                  Heads up, you’ll need to have a few CNC projects under your belt before tackling this one.

                  Fusion 360 files & G-Code available on Mekanika. 

                  • "Noise-reducing beer bottle holder"

                  No surprise, this one is a submission from one of our Belgian users, who milled a custom piece to prevent beer bottles from rattling when transporting beer cases in his car trunk. This goes to show that there are really no limits to what you can do with a CNC milling machine. Thank you to Louis Breyne for submitting this project idea ;-) 

                  • Knife block

                  Who wouldn’t want this Spartan warrior in their kitchen? Here is the CNC project file, with pointers included.

                  • Tray

                  • Cake stand

                  How do you make your cakes look even more amazing? Stage them on a beautiful cake stand - and with a CNC machine, those are actually not that hard to make. Here's a step-by-step guide, almost in recipe mode, by Kati from Houseful of Handmade - with the Easel CNC file included.

                  Another great small creation from the Scrollsaw Workshop - this little ducky pan vent to keep your lids open just the right amount. Love the maker's reasoning about why he includes those little guys in his product selection. 

                  • Wine glass holders

                  Files available here on Thingiverse thanks to CNCRouterParts. 

                  • Shark & hook bottle openers

                  shark hook bottle opener CNC files project

                  Thought you'd enjoy these (beer!) bottle openers. Just have a look at this nice design provided by Benglish on Thingiverse.

                  • Rolling pin

                  Office equipment

                        • Pencil box 

                        • Desk organizer with slot for phone & earbuds

                        A desk organizer made with a CNC milling machine

                        Another great Instructables project that is just begging for the CNC files to be created - props to Bevelish Designs for this great-looking desk organizer. 

                        • Wooden egg speakers

                        Wooden, egg-shaped speakers milled on a CNC machine 

                        This Instructables creation by Marcosproject was realized using Fusion360 and a CNC machine. 

                        CNC files available on Thingiverse thanks to CNCRouterParts.

                        • Custom keyboard caps

                        • Ruler

                        • Stationery Rack

                        Branding & signage

                        • Business signs

                        Here's one we created live during the 2022 Lille Maker Faire for one of our neighboring booths. 

                        • Wedding signs

                        • Bridesmaid hangers

                        • Motivational quotes

                        • House names or numbers

                        • Countdown board

                        • Personalized door hanger

                        • 3D carved keychains

                        Instruments, toys and games

                        • Climbing board

                        Here's another intermediate project to explore the 3D possibilities of your milling machines, with G-Code & Fusion 360 files included, straight from the Mekanika open project library. Make sure you use solid wood for this project, as anything less will cause blisters to its future users. 

                        Solitaire game CNC project

                        This solitaire game was created by Kevr102 on his CNC milling machine, using a Fusion 360 project. Thank you for sharing it on Instructables! 

                        • Wooden sled

                        The perfect project for intermediate woodworkers living in areas with a snowy season. 

                        Guitar on a guitar stand made with a CNC router
                        This is an intermediate-level CNC project to hone your skills before taking on the acoustic or electric guitars described below!

                        CNC files available in the Mekanika project library. 

                        However, if you want a bigger challenge, take a look (below) at a cool design from one of our community members. Why don’t you try to come up with your own design - we’d be happy to feature it!

                        Here's where you can find the original tweet from the German YouTuber CNC Kitchen. 

                        • Plywood guitar

                        Here are the free project files to create your very own plywood guitar, curtesy from Dean Makes on Vectric. 

                        Jewelry & self-care

                        • Earrings

                        • Jewelry box

                        scrapwood CNC jewelry project

                        Here’s how Dieter Schneider, a German woodworker and YouTuber, recycled scrap wood that was just lying around in his workshop into a beautiful jewelry box, engraved with a monogram. Do you have some spare material lying around that you can transform?

                        • Beard comb

                        CNC Workshop equipment ideas

                                  • Tool rack

                                  This tool rack project was submitted to the Mekanika project library by French woodworker Le Bois d'Artegus, and should fit most tools used in CNC milling. 

                                  Model making

                                  • Gliders

                                  This is another cool project from the Mekanika community - this glider enthusiast uses his EVO CNC machine to mill parts for small planes, and the result is just amazing! 

                                  • Model cars

                                  Here’s your chance to satisfy the little kid that is still in you by creating a miniature replica of a Porsche 904 GT, or 1969 Mustang (plans included).

                                  • Architectural models

                                  • Topographical maps

                                  Heads up, this is an advanced project - whether you're interested in mapping the Como lake region or a section of the French Alps, the step-by-step guide and files to make a topographical map are available on Mekanika. 

                                  Custom parts

                                  • Drone parts

                                  • Auto parts

                                  Art pieces


                                  Bronze Sword Mold CNC project

                                  What can you do with a Mekanika EVO CNC machine? Well, the possibilities are endless... but they do include a bronze sword! Thanks to Black Beard Projects for this very cool video

                                   Want to add to the list? Contact us, we'd love to feature your latest CNC creation! 

                                  About Mekanika

                                  Mekanika is a Belgian startup based in Brussels whose ambition is to make local production more accessible. We produce desktop machines for screen printing and CNC milling, which have been recognized for their quality and ease of use, with open source plans allowing makers to adapt their tools to their specific needs. 

                                  Visit our shop to find out more, or check out our tutorials to continue learning.

                                            Albane Flamant 5 December, 2022
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