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Old 12-02-2008, 12:49 AM
airamp airamp is offline
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Scottsdale, Az.
Posts: 684
Default Re: AirAmp’s Submission: A Beginners Progress Plans, Tutors Tips, and Informational link

Well I finally got back to finishing the boarder of the English scroll. I tried to do a wiggle grave with the Air Graver classic and the 3 heel 120 graver I ground and tested.

I did draw a line that I wanted to follow but lo and behold it was much harder than I imagined it to be. The top and the bottom lines were very erratic, one side was wavy and the other was moderately straight. I decided that it really looked bad especially the top and bottom so I thought to just do a 12 gage copper wire inlay and cut the wiggle out. (I needed 12 gage wire to cover most of the bad wiggle).

I started with the classic and my 12 gage flat graver to cut the trough for the wire. It went well until I started getting deeper. With the increased friction of going deeper in brass I found that the SS piston in the classic just made the cutting go slow since I was hogging out so much brass. I maybe should have used blue cutting oil or a lub on the cut now that I am writing this but I had the chance to use the Tungsten Piston I bought with the Air Graver.

Wow that is the greatest. It cut the trough so much easier than the SS piston. It just ploughed it out with little effort. I have to say if you didn’t get one order it from Steve, It is worth every penny, very impressive. Here is the little info sheet that comes with the tungsten piston.

The flat 12 gage carbide from the last post was used to cut the trough with the tungsten piston.

It was ground at a 45 degree face, 20 degree heel, sides were ground to have a -2 degrees to the center make room for turning if I had to in the future. I also put on a very small heel on the sides of the face so it would cut cleaner without making a burr at the top of the tough.

In Bryan Bridges class he said that you have to do ½ the depth of the wire you are inlaying to make it seat properly.

The wiggle was so bad on the top and the bottom that I could not cut it all out even with a heavy inlay of 12 gage wire so there was going to be some gaps. It is a practice plate anyway…

This is what it looked like after the troughs were cut and the two bad wiggles on the side.

I used a knife graver with a small heel to cut the grooves in the trough to hold the inlay. Knife cutting the grooves instead of going in with a flat chisel and decreases the possibility of raising the surface and when sanded would result in a uneven line in the final inlay. The knife technique was learned from Bryan Bridges. Thanks Bryan.

To see it better under the scope I angled a 45lb angle machine vise (4 inch jaws) that I got on Ebay.

It is a V.R. Wesson angle vise I found for $ 100.00 delivered!!. It does need to be cleaned up a bit but works fine. :whoo:

It is unusual in that it rotates on the base and on the vise and swivels horizontal. The weight is so it can also be used for H&C without moving. I don’t have a ball vise that is that heavy. Here are pictures if what I think was a great find and saved the price of a heavy ball vise for now.

I did cut the groves but slipped and scratched the face of the plate, Very obvious and could not fix that ( it is a practice plate, I seem to be saying that quite a bit)

Oh Well.

I cut some #12 gage copper wire heated it to red hot and quenched it in sparex.

It is a pickle solution used in jewelry making and I used it many times for silver and gold. If you drop your red hot wire into it (non ferrous only) it makes it oxidation free and no fire scale. YOU MUST NOT PUT FERROUS METAL IN YOUR PICKLE!!! Use copper tongs to get out your inlay or you will poison your pickle.

Sound like a punch line to a joke?? But true.

The wire is now soft and clean so it can be set in the trough.

Here is a link for sparex.

There other pickles you can use or make your own here is a google serch of jewelry pickles.

Well I tried to use the Classic with the tungsten piston and a 1/8 inch brass punch. It just wasn’t enough to get that big wire flattened enough to hold and it started to be work hardened. I switch to hammer and a ¼ inch brass punch and it seated fine.

I then filed ¼ of the copper down and then used 400 emery paper and then 600 to get it flush with the surface. As you can see (except for what is the left over gaps from the bad wiggle graving) the inlay has some very nice straight lines. The knife technique for inlays works great.

Well that is my first inlay. This poor plate has taken a beating so I think I am done with this plate. I always look on crags list and Ebay for tools and such and came up with a New Hermes Engravograph GTS and some fonts. The Guy was local and charged me $130.00 for it but I had to take the other TX Engravograph Also called a super Both with motors and could use rebuilding but a great deal.

Here is link for crags list in your local area. You will be amazed what people are selling these days and at great prices.

Here is a link to a google search on New hermes engraving machines.

I put a date in the machine and dated this plate 11/30/08 before putting this plate to bed. I used the diamond scratch cutter since the motor needs new brushes.

It is not hand engraving but it did turn out nice for a scratching machine. Feels like cheating.

The pantograph from what I understand can be used to make help make punches or at least lay them out for hand cutting, you can make masters with the air graver and scribe them smaller on plates for hand cutting and more that I cannot even think of or know yet but it is a useful tool it seems.

Well that is it for now. I do have to practice more but for 3 months of engraving it is a start..

I didn’t get to the laser transfer yet in the previous posts. I hope to get to it soon but may not before this contest ends. I will continue to let you know what else a beginner like me finds as I go. Most obviously I need more practice.

Qestions and comments are always welcome.

Hope everyone has a great holiday.
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