“Hey Richard, how about a Thanksgiving-themed blog post this month?” The words came from my colleague Rachel Valerio and got me thinking…how in the heck do I combine my love of Thanksgiving and Onshape CAD? We’ve already written about the reasons to be thankful for cloud-native CAD, so what hasn’t been covered?

Then it hit me…FOOD. I could use Onshape to help me innovate the preparation of a childhood Thanksgiving treat and create a more efficient way to carve turkey

Let’s take a look at my inventions.

CAD Modeling and Jellied Cranberry Sauce

As Thanksgiving approaches, thoughts turn to family, friends, and togetherness, but the thing I look most forward to are the leftover turkey sandwiches. My sandwiches are prepared the same year after year: leftover turkey, plain white bread, mayo, and jellied cranberry sauce.

Uniform slices of jellied cranberry sauce are a must for the perfect sandwich, but even with the striations the can leaves when you plop it out onto a platter, it can be a difficult task. 

To help me achieve perfection, I used Onshape to ideate a few quick designs for a simple but effective cranberry sauce slicer. I finally settled on this one, below. 

How about that, my Cranberry Cutter was featured as the Model-of-the-Week on the Innovator’s Insider podcast. Get your copy here

The next step will be to refine the design for production, and possibly even add some automation.

Onshape Part Studios are a great way to cycle through different design ideas. I was able to model the unique parts to define and capture the geometric relationships between them before pulling everything into an Assembly. A good example here is the relationship between the cutting blades and the grooves in the base. Once I created the Assembly, an animated “slider mate” provided proof of concept.

Improving the Turkey Carving Process

Turkey carving is an art I’ve never really mastered, but I keep trying. I usually use a typical turkey cutting board with spikes that hold the bird, and grooves or pockets to channel the juicy drippings for gravy making. The problem always has been gathering those drippings, so I used Onshape to design a simple modification that allows me to drain them straight into a bottle.

Efficient gravy collection all while keeping the turkey in place.

As you can see, I’ve managed to combine my love of Thanksgiving food and Onshape. 

But I know you’re still thinking about the jellied cranberry sauce, and I’m ready for the barrage of emails letting me know that only whole, fresh cranberries shall be used. I’ll simply reply with one request: Try the sandwich I described and get back to me.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

P.S. Don’t forget to include an Onshape User Group meeting or two for the holidays. We’ll be holding meetings nearly every week through the end of the year, and we’ll have some great technical content. All Onshape User Group meetings are conducted online so you can watch (and even participate) from anywhere. See you there!