Noob question : What shape gravers for starting practicing with pewter?

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Thread starter #1
Hello,

First post, gulp. I want to (en)grave? Straight and curved lines in pewter. What shaped tips would be best? I think fairly thin 2mm or so. I have a 3mm round wood chisel that works on pewter on my first attempt, but holding is a bit awkward. Also do I need a ball end handle for the gravers or can I get away without? Also confused on the ball end handles and which gravers they fit. Thinking of square, knife and round gravers now for pewter, am I close? Thanks much.
 

Southern Custom

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#2
Take a look at he second sticky post on the forum. It's the beginners tool list. This should help you. Learning to use one graver is hard enough without buying 3 or 4 shapes that you don't know the uses for. Keep it simple.
 

Brian Marshall

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#3
Pewter is soft. You can almost engrave it with a fingernail.

Do you know which alloy you are dealing with in Japan? There are several.

Gravers for pewter can be made of carbon steel, probably what your chisel is made of?

If you are going to hand push the graver, yes you will need some kind of handle to rest in the palm of your hand.

The graver, when mounted in the handle - should not protrude over 15 to 20 mm past your closed fingers.

The power to make the cuts comes from pushing with the palm of your hand - guided directionaly by your fingers.

Research, look up images of hand gravers and find hand gravers in actual use in youtube videos. You'll get the idea.


Brian
 

mdengraver

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#6
I was once asked to restore an engraved pewter flask from 1859. Because of the softness of the metal the faint body strokes of the letters were almost completely faded and the hairlines were gone. It was kind of cool to recut the letters. knowing an engraver many years prior had cut in the very same place. I was cutting into a part of living history!
 
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Thread starter #8
Take a look at he second sticky post on the forum. It's the beginners tool list. This should help you. Learning to use one graver is hard enough without buying 3 or 4 shapes that you don't know the uses for. Keep it simple.
Thanks! I did check it , but wasn’t sure if pewter might affect shapes or angles etc.
 
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Thread starter #9
Pewter is soft. You can almost engrave it with a fingernail.

Do you know which alloy you are dealing with in Japan? There are several.

Gravers for pewter can be made of carbon steel, probably what your chisel is made of?

If you are going to hand push the graver, yes you will need some kind of handle to rest in the palm of your hand.

The graver, when mounted in the handle - should not protrude over 15 to 20 mm past your closed fingers.

The power to make the cuts comes from pushing with the palm of your hand - guided directionaly by your fingers.

Research, look up images of hand gravers and find hand gravers in actual use in youtube videos. You'll get the idea.


Brian
Excellent info thanks much!
I have no idea on the steel of my current chisels.
But I’m pretty sure my pewter is about 92tin, 4 copper , 4 not lead something else.

Checking gravers on AliExpress, hard to judge them.
 
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Thread starter #11
And thanks everybody else for commenting mdengraver and chujy,

Is it worth it to get the junky AliExpress yellow handle knockoff gravers set for cheap (being a noob) or should I bite the bullet and go for 10 bucks apiece euro or Japanese made gravers. ?

Eventually I’d like to engrave on silver, brass and bronze.

Thanks again for taking the time
 

mdengraver

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#12
Silver is easy to cut. It's also quite soft but not nearly as soft as pewter! Many practice cuts would be advised on pewter. Again, pewter is incredibly soft!
 

monk

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#13
the actual geometry aint going to matter much until you actually practice a few cuts on different materials. rounds, flats, 90's, onglettes ?? they all have a different feel to them and work in a slightly different manner. the actual chosen shape will depend on the type of designs you intend to engrave. with the correc geometry, a paperclip would do nicely in pewter.
 
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Thread starter #14


http://i.imgur.com/zXGJ716.jpg

I did a bunch of reading on here and watched some hours of YouTube vids on hobo nickels and have a better idea now, thanks all.

So I’m practicing freehand no vise on this pewter one inch diameter coin blank. I engraved the outer circle on the rim and made the sun with the 1.5mm wood chisel. Also removed some material in the field between mtn and rim .Then I used a knobby Dremel type bit and smoothed down and removed more material. The plan is to keep the mountain and sun elevated, and add detail to the mtn. And also keep the square center hole and rim elevated above the fields. That’s about it , hope you understand my noob terminology.

Thinking of this set of Chinese gravers from AliExpress

http://https://www.aliexpress.com/item/8pcs-Different-Gravers-High-Speed-Steel-For-Jewelry-Engravers/32714754601.html?spm=2114.search0104.3.220.aG4sf2&ws_ab_test=searchweb0_0,searchweb201602_2_10152_10065_10151_10068_10344_10345_10342_10343_10340_10341_10307_10060_10155_10154_10056_10055_10054_10059_5370017_10534_10533_10532_100031_10099_10338_10103_10102_5590020_10052_10053_10142_10107_10050_10051_10325_10084_10083_10080_10082_10081_10110_10175_10111_10112_10113_10114_5610015_10312_10313_10314_10078_10079_10073,searchweb201603_30,ppcSwitch_4&btsid=7a553813-a20e-4dbc-bef1-9149b2178433&algo_expid=bec7d132-a22d-4a49-b912-2ad0db1d51ea-28&algo_pvid=bec7d132-a22d-4a49-b912-2ad0db1d51ea

Schneikes that’s a long URL
 
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Brian Marshall

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#17
Most folk on this forum are going to scream, but I am going to go contrary to what folks are going to like to hear in this particular case.

Your case is different, and these particular Chinese products are not knockoffs of power assisted engraving machines.


Be aware that you are NOT going to get what is pictured.

The Valorbe, Antilope and GMT brands are NOT made in China! (Yet, anyway)

Looks like they just grabbed images from the Internet to illustrate what they are flogging...?


IF, they are indeed high speed steel - then they should work fine for your purposes.

Even if they are only carbon steel, they would work for your purposes.

In actuality, the steel used to make a common nail would work for engraving pewter!


The Chinese are much maligned for the quality of some of their products - and justly so.

BUT, I am old enough to remember when exactly the same was said of Japanese products... and look what happened there.

The Chinese are learning, and they are learning fast.


I have a half dozen Chinese bench grinders that I paid around $29 ea. for 18 years ago. A similar USA made Black & Decker was $190+ at the time.

I own one of the Black & Deckers as well. Given a choice I would very definitely buy 6 of the Chinese grinders for the price of one of the old B&Ds.

They have served me very very well over the years. The B&D is on its last legs... those Chinese grinders are still going strong...


There ARE Chinese products that are of decent and even superior quality these days. And there are those that are not.

That will change, as I said, they are learning. Practically every day they are invading a new market. Ours is one of them.

Given what Sam Alfano stated about seeing 90% of the products in an average hardware store being sourced from China these days - ya'all better get used to figuring out which ones are well made and which are not.

My advice in your case is gonna be go get the Chinese graver blanks. You are not risking much.

Do us all a favor and post images of what you really get, (they can't be what is pictured, unless they etch fake brands on them) and let us know how they work for you...


Brian
 
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Thread starter #19
hi momo-san,

I wouldn t buy the chinese sh.t!
If budget, than look for used ones... but good ones!

https://auctions.yahoo.co.jp/catego...042443/?fr=auc-prop&tab_ex=commerce&p=金属加工、彫金

https://page.auctions.yahoo.co.jp/jp/auction/p568534939

look at jewellers toolshops, like okachimachi area in Tokyo.
Kansai wakaranai!

ja-matta,
greetings
tako
Thanks tako, and Brian,

I saw that set on yahoo auction as well, looks the same as the alibaba pic, wonder if they’re legit as well?

I think I’ll try the cheap Chinese set , really can’t go wrong for 2000 yen (20bucks) with shipping. And a couple of real gravers . Then when I learn how to use them , maybe I’ll understand how sharpen them and then maybe I can make one. Haven’t been successful so far trying to make one that actually cuts straight, they all skid off the surfac3 and scratch my work. I’ll let you all know how it goes when I get them.

Thanks much for your help and feel free to critique anything I write, I’m here to learn,

Momoyama
 

Brian Marshall

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#20
Making graver from scratch out of old files, saw blades and other high carbon steel is not as important as the sharpening of them.

Your problem of skidding has more to do with what what your point geometry is - as well as acquiring the muscle memory to keep that point at the correct angle to the piece. Your hand is probably not steady yet. Repetition will get you there.


Brian
 

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