Interested in starting engraving

Help Support Muzzle Loading Forum:

TerryK

40 Cal.
Joined
Jan 3, 2014
Messages
342
Reaction score
84
Location
Central PA
I am ready to retire, and always thought it would be noble to learn to engrave. So I was hoping that peoples experience could guide me to proper equipment and resources.
I guess I need an engraver tool, vice, learning aids, and a lot of practice. So any advice would be appreciated. Thanks.
 

FishDFly

69 Cal.
Joined
Nov 21, 2005
Messages
7,121
Reaction score
2,756
There is a good book on engraving from the NMLRA. It's in the $100 range, but it the best I have heard. i
 

martin9

40 Cal
MLF Supporter
Joined
Aug 28, 2020
Messages
209
Reaction score
249
A small engravers hammer and square graver are the only 2 tools you need to get started. MBS has nice hammers and gravers. I've noticed a lot of the pro builders just engrave the parts on the gun or use a putty to glue something like a patchbox or sideplate onto a block of wood so they can then put it in a vice. I can't remember the name but it sets and releases with heat so is reusable
 

oldwood

54 Cal.
MLF Supporter
Joined
Jul 15, 2019
Messages
1,948
Reaction score
2,150
Location
Pa. , USA
While you are gathering some starting hardware , start with a few pencils and some paper. Back in the mid 1980's , I was given an impromptu 1/2 hour course in engraving by Louis Sanchez on the steps of the NMLRA log cabin rifle display building at a Spring Shoot Friendship , Ind.. If you can master some design principles seen on already engraved work , you're started. Muzzleloader engraving can be simple , or insanely complex. Few guns on the frontier were in the latter category. Original guns displaying metal inlays were usually lightly engraved by mostly crude gravers made by the gunbuilder himself , or , the shop had a smith employed to do the shop's fancy work. These thoughts are generalizations from observations over 50 + yrs. of gun work. Get a good small hard Arkansas stone , keep it oiled and clean, keep your tools sharp. Get a proper engraver's hammer , and see if you can make the tools do something that looks interesting. A , 1 mm marker pen that writes on anything , is handy to try a design or two , on a soft metal plate. Get a head mounted magnifier , about 2 to 3 power. and , "have at it"....................Hope this helps..........oldwood
 
Joined
May 27, 2006
Messages
2,527
Reaction score
181
The most important tools to start with for this endeavor,

Paper
Pencil
erasers
patience

I'd also look into the Lindsay sharpening template system, being able to sharpen the tooling exactly the same each time will cut the frustration curve by two-thirds.

Both the Lindsay and Alfano Sites are full of information, both sites offer all of the information needed to pursue this affliction as far as you're willing to take it.

Good Luck.

KIMG1488.JPG




KIMG1668.jpg
 

Robby

62 Cal.
Joined
Apr 15, 2008
Messages
3,499
Reaction score
1,419
Location
NYSSR
Terry, I had a bit of a different approach. I forged out and ground to shape some concrete nails, mounted them in some lopped off 7/16" Carriage bolts. Sharpened them up on some whet stones, tapped them around on a scrap of brass till I got a feel for the nature of this craft, came to the realization that, heck yeah I can do this, and had at it. I'm probably about as good as I will ever be without some formal instruction but I'm okay with that and always strive to do better. The most important thing I think I learned is that the graver must be sharp and sharpened correctly. I'm certainly not in league with many of the fellows that post their work but I like to believe I can hold my own with those guys from a couple hundred years ago, cuz they're all dead, HAH, but I enjoy engraving, that in and of itself was worth the effort.
DSCN1015.jpeg

Robby
 
Top