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Any engravers here??

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  • Any engravers here??

    It seems to me we have a member or two around here that do some hand engraving, but I'm not 100% sure. One of my sons is sort of interested in trying to learn a bit about that, if there is anyone on here that might answer a few things for me I'd appreciate a shout. I have seen the stuff on the engravers forums, but I have just a few questions about tools and some other stuff I'd like to understand before jumping in too deeply there.

  • #2
    Get him a copy of The Art of Engraving by Meek. Brownells publishes it.
    David Kaiser
    “You can have peace. Or you can have freedom. Don't ever count on having both at once.”
    ― Robert A. Heinlein

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    • #3
      Originally posted by 38_Cal View Post
      Get him a copy of The Art of Engraving by Meek. Brownells publishes it.
      Thanks, I'd seen that. It looks to be one of the go-to manuals out there. I'll have that on order this week.

      Thanks again,
      Al

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      • #4
        Just a thought about something to practice on besides the usual little rectangular plates. I've seen some vintage Stanley bench planes with engraved sides and caps that actually look very nice. A #4 is so common you can find a decent one cheap. Not sure how the cast iron is to work vs steel? Engraved firearms have their place but maybe best left to the masters.

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        • #5
          Just a thought here, I was curious about engraving myself some years back, so I made a few tools and purchased a couple more gravers from Brownells. I soon found out that my mechanical skills exceeded my artistic skills. Anyway, it was a fun experience.

          Sarge41

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          • #6
            Engravers tend to be able to draw well I've found (ideally tattooists should too but from what I've seen that aspect seems absent, recently saw an eagle that looked like an angry chicken, very funny)
            Gravers are important, the ball or swivel vice is equally so too, you can make one though.
            I've watched with awe myself, I have to stick to an old Taylor Hobson machine!
            Mark

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            • #7
              I don't think he'll be getting near any fine firearms with an engraving tool anytime soon. Not sure what he has in the way of artistic talent and what he has he did not get from me, as I have none to pass along. The artistry of that sort of work is amazing, though for starters there seem to be plenty of public domain patterns to be had that you can use as patterns to learn the "craft" part of the process.

              This is largely an experiment to try something new, he may or may not decide it's something he want to pursue long term, and that's fine. It's fun to try stuff and you never know what will stick.

              We have a few gravers and some other stuff coming and will probably try to improvise on a few of the more involved tools for the short term, just to get a flavor for it. If it goes beyond that there are scads of machining projects that can be set in motion as a result I guess.

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              • #8
                I'm still learning, but I have found that the most important thing is to have a sharp point that can be done quickly and consistently. The Lindsey
                sharpener seems to be a favorite. I have used one, and I liked it. It is easier to get set up, and get repeatable results with than many of the other systems out there, and not too expensive. Go here for information: http://www.airgraver.com/sharpening.htm . I have no affiliation with the Lindsey company. Hot rolled steel makes good practice plates, but needs to be pickled first to remove the mill scale.
                I have a copy of Meek's book, and it leaves a lot unexplained. There are some decent videos online, but it takes some searching to find ones that do much explaining of the techniques.
                I can't offer too much more than that. Good luck to him. Perseverance is a must.

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                • #9
                  Not to throw this thread too far off track but is a 40W CO2 laser enough to etch/engrave metal? I'm not sure how I got there but ran across a few CNC laser machines in 40, 60 and 80 Watt on Amazon. Just wondering if that/those would work. There's plenty of patterns on the Interweb. Seems all you need to do is provide a photo or drawing and the software converts it to machine readable format. Press start and bingo!

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                  • #10
                    If you want a fun beginners project for him, get him started on a "hobo nickel"
                    Do a websearch on Google for lots of ideas.

                    https://www.google.com/search?q=hobo...w=1280&bih=628

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                    • #11
                      An economical engraving vise can be made by cutting the top off a bowling ball to make a large flat area, bolting a vise to it and setting the ball in a large ring. The ring part can be about any material - a piece of steel pipe face on the lathe, hardwood, plastic, etc. Bowling balls are often a few bucks at garage sales.

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