Hand tools and fabrication machines
I was playing around with the idea of a laser cut Christmas Tree, and thought it would be cool to embed a single shiny bauble in the centre of the tree instead of hanging a few of them on the branches. It's my minimalist inversion of the traditional tree!
The pieces were designed so that the zig-zag of one tree section fits exactly with another tree section if one is turned upside down. This allowed me to nest all 4 pieces of the tree into a neat rectangle (including the star topper!) which saves wasted material.
I drew up the plans in AutoCAD and exported them to the CNC software Cut2D, which drives my 4W Emblaser laser cutter. At a mere 4W of power, this is 10-15x less powerful than typical 40-60W CO2 lasers. So this took 6 passes at 5mm/s, at a total of about 3 hours just for this. (Now imagine if I hadn't nested the outlines!)
Assemble 3 of the sides with the hub pieces, just with a friction fit. Sandpaper and/or glue may be necessary if your slot dimensions are slightly off.
Pop in the bauble after 3 sides are done, then slot in the 4th side to lock it in place and complete the tree.
Oh, and I almost forgot the most fun part: the star tree topper slots in the top, for that satisfying finale. The stem of the star slots into the hole in the hub piece. Glue if needed.
Enjoy! Merry Christmas people.