The art of engraving materials has been around for millennia, dating all the way back to prehistoric times. Of course, advances in technology available have allowed us to engrave more than just stone. Today, most artisans tend to engrave metals such as brass.
Engraving brass has long been a method used by designers and metalworkers as a “finishing touch”, to add flair to a particular piece. Thanks to the aforementioned technological advances and the relative ease at which it is to create your own backyard workshop/forge, it is no wonder why engraving has become quite the hobby around the country. If you are interested in getting into engraving metals, here are a few tips to help your first foray go smoothly:
Acquire Quality Brass
It all starts with the quality of the brass you are working with. Brass that tends to have too many impurities can easily break off during the engraving process, which is why it is important to find a source for quality engraving brass. Fortunately, there are many brass suppliers available such as Rotax Metals. When choosing the type of brass to use for your next few projects, it may be a good idea to share your plans with your supplier as they can easily recommend a suitable material for you. This is especially important if you plan to make something out of the brass before you engrave it.
Go with Automatic Chisels
In the past, the only way to engrave items was to use a good old chisel and hammer. Although this method is still used today, many artisans have resorted to using automated chisels and it is highly recommended that beginners do the same. Electronic chisels are much easier to control and as a result, the accuracy of your engraving is much higher. Try reading reviews online to help you find several electric chisels that perform well. If possible, try to get it in your hands before you buy it. The better it feels in your hands, the better your control of it will be once you start your project.
Always Engage Safety Practices
As you can imagine, working with a variety of electric-powered tools and the like can present more than a few risks. This is why you should always practice safety first. Work goggles are highly recommended as it isn’t uncommon for debris to fly off as you engrave the brass. Even the smallest particle can lead to significant eye damage. Work gloves with rubber palms are also recommended when working to avoid losing your grip on your tools, especially if you have sweaty palms.
The Uses and Properties of Bronze, TheBalance.com
Engraving Brass How-To: Beginners and Hobbyists. JockeyJournal.com.