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Shaper Trace

The Ultimate Tool for Bringing Your Sketches to Life.

Disclaimer: All reviews contain subjective opinions of the NANZA team.

 [Funding Status

Pledges: $366,874 (as of Jun 22, 2023)

Live until: Jul 21, 2023

@ 10:00 PM (PDT)

 [Reward Price] 

Launch Special: $79 (20% off retail)

* Shipping fee not included.

 [Estimated Shipping Time] 

Nov 2023

 NANZA Tl;dr 

Artists often have trouble with getting their ideas onto bigger surfaces and platforms. Small drawings and lettering from everyday sketches become difficult to use, but it hurts to abandon great ideas, whether big or small. Shaper Trace has become a solution for millions of artists and visual designers, as it's now become accessible to bring ideas from paper to life!



Use in Three Easy Steps:  

  • Place the Trace Frame over your drawing 

  • Capture using the Trace App on your phone

  • Export the SVG for use with your favorite fabrication tool or graphic design program





What's Different?

There are many tools on the market that can Trace an image – some better than others, but Trace not only captures the outline of your drawing in seconds, but also finds the centerline of your sketch, providing a clean line that’s optimized for working with laser cutters, vinyl cutters, CNC machines and more.

How it Works

Trace uses the camera on your mobile device, allowing you to capture your drawing at any angle without the need to be directly over the image. As long as the Frame is in view, Trace will automatically flatten the image, removing perspective distortion, as well as the distortion introduced by the lens on your phone’s camera. 





Trace App

Along with the Trace Frame, you’ll have access to the Trace web application. And don’t worry, there’s no extra charge or subscription required to use it. (That's a first!)

Access the app from any browser on your phone or tablet with a rear-facing camera.

Shaper Studio

Once captured, you can also open designs directly in Shaper Studio – their simplified design tool for craftspeople. You can combine your captured drawing with other shapes and text and utilize Studio’s Shapeshifter function for something truly unique.











Unlimited Possibilities

Wondering what you can make of Trace and the App? Here are just a few things that you can get your creative mind on:

1. Tool Organization

2. Graphic Design

3. Hardware Installation

4. Organic Profiles

5. Custom Signature

6. Hole Patterns

7. Vinyl Stickers

Color Options

The frame and pen are currently only offered in black, and it seems like that'll be the only option for a while!






About Shaper

Shaper is a woodworking and robotics company based in San Francisco, California and Stuttgart Germany, best known for their hand-held CNC router, Shaper Origin. Since launching Origin in 2016 they've been supporting thousands of craftspeople around the globe by making precision cutting easy and accessible.

Reward Price

Get it for $79 during the Early Bird Sale, which is just 20% off MSRP but it's still something! Hurry before it ends, you're looking at over $100 for full price. 


Shipping details aren't disclosed yet, but we estimate it'll be around $20. 

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 What We Love 

1. Accuracy

A lot of digital art and design software still lack accuracy and make it difficult for users to capture exactly what they want. The simple technology of the Trace App is easy to understand and uses a camera instead of any complicated scanning methods to grasp exactly what you want to work with. This gives it the ability to preserve the exact scale of your drawing. Plus, it all happens in a matter of seconds!

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2. Compatability

The biggest hurdle to digital fabrication tools is oftentimes the design itself. Trace creates an SVG, which works with most digital fabrication tools. You can also use it in your digital design workflow with vector based tools like Illustrator, or even better, Shaper Studio.

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 What We Don't 

1. Items Included

For what you'd be paying for ($70-100), you'd probably expect a little more than a plastic frame and a regular artist pen. Essentially, you're paying for the software. But we don't think it would hurt to include some other Shaper goodies, like stencils, guides, pencils, etc. that you can use along the way!

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 Is it Worth it? 

Trace helps eliminate several unnecessary and tedious steps for artists that would otherwise probably take several hours or days to do. We think it's worth your money, since it'll definitely save your time and energy. Become your own designer, engineer, artist, and more with the help of just one app and a small frame that'll bring about bigger ideas. 

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