Laser Engraved Knot Grid Mat

My dad is in town for the holidays so I brought him over to Pocket NC's shop to see some laser cutting. I was cutting some parts for another project (you'll see in another post soon), but since my dad was there I decided to experiment with something else as well. If you've followed my Freakin' Sweet Knots project or used the Advanced Grid Maker, you know that I'm in to knots. Well, I inherited that interest from my dad, who grew up in the Chesapeake Bay Area and was always on the water. Since we were at the laser cutter, I wanted to do something knot related. I didn't have anything prepared, but I used the Advanced Grid Maker to design a quick knot grid that I could engrave. Below is the grid I used:

 Knot grid mat pattern.

Knot grid mat pattern.

If you'd like to tie this mat yourself, you can layout pins like the pattern above and follow the instructions below, going pin to pin and going over (O) or under (U) strands that are already down in the order listed. You can print out the image or just drill holes in a board regularly spaced around a rectangle. 

From A1      . . . . . . . . . . .      to H7
From H7           to G2
From G2      . . . . . . . . . .      to A2
From A2      O .      to C1
From C1      . . . . . . . .      to H5
From H5      . U O .      to E2
From E2      . . . . . .      to A4
From A4      . U O . O .      to E1
From E1      . . . .      to H3
From H3      . U . U O . O .      to C2
From C2      . .      to A6
From A6      . U . U O . O . O .      to G1
From G1           to H1
From H1      . U . U . U O . O . O      to A7
From A7           to B2
From B2      U . U . U O . O . O      to H2
From H2      U O      to F1
From F1      U . U . U O . O      to A5
From A5      U O U O      to D2
From D2      U . U O . O      to H4
From H4      U O U O U O      to D1
From D1      U . U O      to A3
From A3      U O U O U O U O      to F2
From F2      U O      to H6
From H6      U O U O U O U O U O      to B1
From B1           to A1


I've already been making cylindrical mandrels, with a specific knot engraved, and had been tossing around the idea of making 2D grids as well, but hadn't gotten around to it until the other day. I engraved the image generated by the Advanced Grid Maker (a modified version that generates the cylindrical mandrel patterns) and drilled pin holes manually using a drill press. Eventually, I'd like to generate circular mats and laser cut the pin holes, but this was a good first prototype with just the pattern engraved.

I scrounged through my box of cord and dug out some small, brown, almost-leather-looking, cotton cord and handed the grid to my dad to tie. Not having to follow a run list makes it quick work!