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Author Topic: Lets Learn Engraving!  (Read 23646 times)

Offline CrescentSon

  • Posts: 2423
Lets Learn Engraving!
« on: Nov 04, 2011, 00:42:48 »
Due to the amount of interest in my new hobby, I figured I'd start a thread that we could all participate in.

The plan is to start compiling resources, research, reference sources, tool designs, projects, tips, tricks, and a log of our progress. As many know, this is a brand new skill that I'm digging into, so I'm no expert. Hopefully, together we can progress faster than going it alone. So all you would be engravers, pick up an iron brush and dig in. If we have any experienced engravers, I think I can speak for everyone interested when I say please feel free to share.

With that in mind, here are a few resources. We can update this as we go To keep a master list so let me know what you guys are finding out there.

http://www.engravingforum.com/
This is the site started by Steve Lindsay the creator of the Lindsay air graver. Lots of good info.

http://www.igraver.com/
Sam Alfano's Tips and Tricks for Hand Engraving

http://chestofbooks.com/reference/American-Cyclopaedia-4/Engraving.html
A good working history of engraving.

http://www.engravingglossary.com/Hand%20Engraving%20Glossary%20G.htm
General glossary of engraving.
 
http://www.thecarvingpath.net/forum/
An excellent all media engraver's forum.

Let's get started, shall we?
« Last Edit: Nov 07, 2011, 04:38:05 by CrescentSon »
"I hated hipsters before it was cool." -Sonreier

"Lifes a bitch when your trying to sell gold bars to beggars" -VonYinzer

"To say that ALL cafe racers are the same degree of ho hum is like saying that finger banging a fisher price piano is on par with listening to Beethoven." -Kanticoy

Offline CrescentSon

  • Posts: 2423
Re: Lets Learn Engraving!
« Reply #1 on: Nov 04, 2011, 01:02:58 »
I'll start with what is already out there. Here are a few pics of my current work.







Currently I'm hand engraving using push gravers, and mostly in aluminum. I have dabbled with the engine covers on my CB750. My goal is to work my way up to engraving on firearms, knives, and engines.

I started with these:


My gravers were made out of HSS (high speed steel) drill shanks that I scrounged. Most of what I'm reading suggests that cobalt is the best metal, followed by HSS. High carbon steel is serviceable, but is considered old tech. I did however watch a vid on you tube where a guy used a concrete nail.

I also cut a couple of handles out of some scrap hardwood. I basically used these images to get my shapes down.



Tools for Wood Engraving.
1. Elliptic. 2. Gouge. 3. Chisel. 4. Tint. 5. Lozenge. 6. Graver. 7. Tool for Pine. 8. Tool in Handle.

There isn't a lot of information out there for push engraving so I hit the power graving sites. Most recommend a 45* on both square and round gravers. For what I've been doing I've been using a lot sharper angles.
« Last Edit: Nov 04, 2011, 01:09:41 by CrescentSon »
"I hated hipsters before it was cool." -Sonreier

"Lifes a bitch when your trying to sell gold bars to beggars" -VonYinzer

"To say that ALL cafe racers are the same degree of ho hum is like saying that finger banging a fisher price piano is on par with listening to Beethoven." -Kanticoy

Offline CrescentSon

  • Posts: 2423
Re: Lets Learn Engraving!
« Reply #2 on: Nov 04, 2011, 01:11:31 »
You may have noticed I have a couple of spokes in my graves. The metal ended up being a bit too soft, and only worked for more broad angled, heavier tools.
"I hated hipsters before it was cool." -Sonreier

"Lifes a bitch when your trying to sell gold bars to beggars" -VonYinzer

"To say that ALL cafe racers are the same degree of ho hum is like saying that finger banging a fisher price piano is on par with listening to Beethoven." -Kanticoy

Offline GS750cafe

  • Posts: 106
Re: Lets Learn Engraving!
« Reply #3 on: Nov 04, 2011, 01:35:06 »
Awesome stuff! Keep it coming!

Offline CrescentSon

  • Posts: 2423
Re: Lets Learn Engraving!
« Reply #4 on: Nov 04, 2011, 02:14:31 »
Welcome aboard GS. Will do sir.

Step 1: Making gravers.

As I said above my gravers are made from round stock. Most pros use either square stock, or square blanks with rounded shanks. Rounds are, ironically enough easily made from round stock. I had several worn out 3mm round HSS engraving drills, so that is what I used.

The first 4 types of gravers you'll need are flats, squares, onglettes, and rounds.



Rounds are straight forward. I chucked up a drill on the drill press and cut it to length (I'm still experimenting with lengths). The next step was to grind a 45* angle with the belt sander. Pretty easy so far. a round is used to cut a rounded bottom trench, so that was really about it.

The next was the onglet. The ones I'm using are just about the same design as a round. The only difference is after cutting to length I spun it on the press and used a file to taper it to a 15* point. Think ice pick. The i threw it on the sander for a 45* bevel as well.



Square gravers were a little harder to pull off with round stock. As the name implies it starts with square stock, so I had to grind the tips to a roughly square profile. then you grind a 45* angle diagonally making a diamond face with a pointed leading edge. I wanted finer cuts and line so my edges were brought in making a sharper leading point.



Flats are basically chisels. Most produced for air-assisted engraving are quite thin, <1mm. Since I'm push graving, and wanting to learn traditional Japanese metal carving I mad mine the width if the stock so I could use it like a wood plane to smooth curves. One side was ground at a long sloping angle 20* or so, and a 35*-45* cutting heel was ground into the opposite side.



To finish them off I threw a sheet of 400 grit wet/dry paper on a flat surface (granite cutting board) and honed all the faces. The cutting edges got run on 1000 grit for a quick polish.

That gives me a fairly good collection for basic push, or hammer and chisel engraving. I drilled a few holes in a scrap of maple for a quick holder. My next task is to come up with a vise.



« Last Edit: Nov 04, 2011, 08:35:34 by CrescentSon »
"I hated hipsters before it was cool." -Sonreier

"Lifes a bitch when your trying to sell gold bars to beggars" -VonYinzer

"To say that ALL cafe racers are the same degree of ho hum is like saying that finger banging a fisher price piano is on par with listening to Beethoven." -Kanticoy

Offline CrescentSon

  • Posts: 2423
Re: Lets Learn Engraving!
« Reply #5 on: Nov 04, 2011, 02:21:01 »
Just for fun, some amazing engraving video.

Traditional Japanese hammer and chisel.



Air-assisted
"I hated hipsters before it was cool." -Sonreier

"Lifes a bitch when your trying to sell gold bars to beggars" -VonYinzer

"To say that ALL cafe racers are the same degree of ho hum is like saying that finger banging a fisher price piano is on par with listening to Beethoven." -Kanticoy

Offline stroker crazy

  • DTT SUPPORTER
  • *
  • Posts: 3703
  • crazy as a fox
Re: Lets Learn Engraving!
« Reply #6 on: Nov 04, 2011, 03:17:26 »
Amazing demonstration of skill!

I wish all success with your new endeavour.

Crazy
“Ride like the Wind” W.H.

Offline jay_kent

  • Posts: 1297
  • 1979 cb650
    • Cafe build blog
Re: Lets Learn Engraving!
« Reply #7 on: Nov 04, 2011, 10:28:32 »
That's some great info, and those vids are amazing.
You are one talented mofo.
DTT build thread - here
More pics at my Cafe build blog - Here

"And yeah David...you're pretty much bugshit nuts just like the rest of us." ~Swagger

Offline CrescentSon

  • Posts: 2423
Re: Lets Learn Engraving!
« Reply #8 on: Nov 04, 2011, 11:38:01 »
Crazy, Jay, thanks guys. I'll try to keep progressing, and keep the info coming.

Basic parts of a graver. In print plate making it is called a burin.


Here is an incredibly comprehensive description of gravers, their parts, and sharpening angles. Like most sources he uses a sharpening guide, but the theory is easily applied to manual sharpening.

http://www.grstools.com/PDF/LIT-Class_Sharpening.pdf
« Last Edit: Nov 04, 2011, 11:46:51 by CrescentSon »
"I hated hipsters before it was cool." -Sonreier

"Lifes a bitch when your trying to sell gold bars to beggars" -VonYinzer

"To say that ALL cafe racers are the same degree of ho hum is like saying that finger banging a fisher price piano is on par with listening to Beethoven." -Kanticoy

Offline CrescentSon

  • Posts: 2423
Re: Lets Learn Engraving!
« Reply #9 on: Nov 04, 2011, 13:02:09 »
The next hurdle is holding the material being engraved.

In the tiger tsuba videos the artist uses a traditional method of holding called a pitch bowl. As it sounds a pitch bowl is a hemisphere bowl, filled with pitch, and placed in a round base. The pitch is heated and the workpiece is hot glued in place. I'm considering actually trying to hot glue a coin down for my next project. You can get pitch bowls from most jeweler suppliers.


This kit can be bought for $60 - $70 usd here http://shorinternational.com/ChasingTool.php

Here is a cheaper alternative, with a write up here: http://www.ganoksin.com/borisat/nenam/jeweler-pitch.htm


He also has a design out of cast concrete here: http://www.ganoksin.com/borisat/nenam/ballpage.htm

Here is a metal pitch bowl made from a bearing race and a base cut off of a propane cylinder.


Here is the tsuba guy prepping the pitch bowl:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gkf9bDqn1fo&feature=youtu.be

The next technology for holding is the ball vise. It is basically a modern spin on the pitch bowl. It is a modular vise set on a steel ball base. They are pretty cost prohibitive starting at $300+. You can get these at most jeweler suppliers and engraving sites.


The final technique is a simple drill press vise mounted to whatever base you have available. You can pick these up pretty cheap at Home Depot or any tool supply house.


Here is a version of that mounted on an old timers rotating table made from what appears to be a truck axle!

« Last Edit: Nov 04, 2011, 18:18:34 by CrescentSon »
"I hated hipsters before it was cool." -Sonreier

"Lifes a bitch when your trying to sell gold bars to beggars" -VonYinzer

"To say that ALL cafe racers are the same degree of ho hum is like saying that finger banging a fisher price piano is on par with listening to Beethoven." -Kanticoy