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Chogy
09 Jun 11,, 15:09
Wellman's journey into gunsmithing and technical arts reminded me of something I truly enjoy but haven't had time to pursue in a few years. Maybe some day, I'll get back into it, but for the moment, the tools (and skills) are on the shelf.

I have always been in awe of hand-engraving, such as the fine scroll work and game scenes on fine shotguns, firearms, and knives. After a lot of effort, I found that I could cut reasonably well, but the artwork, creating scrollwork that is attractive, is by far the hard part.

Engraving can be done with hammer and graver, or one of the more modern pneumatic tools. I selected a tool engineered by Steve Lindsay (http://www.lindsayengraving.com/Hand-Engraving-Tools.htm), a marvel of technology called a PalmControl. Check out Steve's work, and be blown away...

http://www.5bears.com/picbin/palm01.jpg

The graver bits are 5/32" square carbide. The shape of the tip is very specific, and makes or breaks the cut:

http://www.5bears.com/picbin/bits02.jpg

http://www.5bears.com/picbin/bits03.jpg

To sharpen these accurately, I created a very special 3-axis sharpening rig that applies the carbide to a slow diamond wheel.

http://www.5bears.com/picbin/dafix04.jpg

http://www.5bears.com/picbin/dafix03.jpg

Chogy
09 Jun 11,, 15:11
I bought quite a few cheap knives with steel scales for practice. Some are rather hideous, some I don't mind posting.

Basic outline:
http://www.5bears.com/picbin/razr01.jpg

shaded:
http://www.5bears.com/picbin/razr02.jpg

This next one has a better touch on the shape and shading of the scrolls:
http://www.5bears.com/picbin/newsc00.jpg

http://www.5bears.com/picbin/newsc02.jpg

I got as far artistically and technically as these last couple of knives, and then life got in the way! Maybe when all the kids are settled, it is something I can pursue a bit in retirement. The satisfaction you get in working with your hands is hard to beat. I cannot imagine entering retirement without something along these lines.

Thanks for looking. :)

astralis
09 Jun 11,, 15:12
very nice machine-shop you've got going on, chogy! got more pics?

USSWisconsin
09 Jun 11,, 15:16
Beautiful work and awesome tools Chogy!

highsea
10 Jun 11,, 03:36
I like your little grinder Chogy. It's always a pleasure to see someone take pride in the details. Most people just wouldn't have taken the extra step to have the anodizing done on something they made for their own use.

You're a talented metalworker. It's unusual to see that from someone in your profession. Did your father own a machine shop? I'm curious where you learned the trade.

Chogy
15 Jun 11,, 15:32
Thanks guys. my hobbies are pretty obscure, and it's fun to share.

My Dad was a mechanical engineer. He had a huge love of steam engines, and bought a small lathe to try and put some together. But it was kind of odd... he was more of a dreamer than a doer, so the lathe gathered dust until I started messing with it as a teenager. I loved it, and it's just something that I've pursued on the side.

The cool thing about machine tools is that they can make 98% of just about anything, and the last 2%, they can make the tools to produce them.

vsdoc
15 Jun 11,, 15:37
Beautiful work. Do you do it free hand or with some form of stencil? Its something I always respect about Americans. You guys take the time out to follow your passion. And go all out, with quality in whatever you do. Out here is all I can manage between work and family for the entire week, so that by weekend its sleep, eat, TV, read a little, and its time to get the kids in bed for school the next day again.

highsea
16 Jun 11,, 02:38
Thanks guys. my hobbies are pretty obscure, and it's fun to share.

My Dad was a mechanical engineer. He had a huge love of steam engines, and bought a small lathe to try and put some together. But it was kind of odd... he was more of a dreamer than a doer, so the lathe gathered dust until I started messing with it as a teenager. I loved it, and it's just something that I've pursued on the side.

The cool thing about machine tools is that they can make 98% of just about anything, and the last 2%, they can make the tools to produce them.The lathe is the only machine in the shop that can reproduce itself.

I've always loved that about lathes. Just kind of an emotional thing.

You should market your grinder to other engravers, it's a sweet little machine.

I called it with your old man, it's in your DNA. :)