Wooden signs are all the rage currently, so we decided we needed to design and create some signs that signified home was where the heart was. First, we wanted to come up with the outline of each state. Since we live in Arkansas, we started with that. Finding a vector file of your home state should be very easy with a simple google search. Wikipedia is usually a really good place to start.
Choosing a bit is an important decision. You typically want to go with as large of a bit as the design will allow. The larger the bit, the faster you can run the machine and cut out your design. Thankfully, most programs, including the one we used, will show a simulation of the cut and let you know if the bit you choose will cut out the shape or if its to large and you need to use a smaller bit. For this design, the largest bit we could use would be a 1/8 endmill and still get in all the detail.
Tools Today offers a great variety of compression bits. Doing a quick search for 1/8 compression bits lead me to bit #46180-K solid carbide compression router bit. This one has a special Spektra™ coating, that extends the life of the bit and keeps the bit cooler. We inputted the specifications of the bit into carbide create and were ready to make the carve.