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Please Help with Gravers and their Use

Gonzalo G

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Maybe I´m very naive, but I intend to engrave decorations in my knives, though I don´t have tools and any knowledge about their use. I intend to make my own gravers, simple tools without mechanics or air power, with the exception of a Dremel, because I already have one, but I don´t know what tips should I use to engrave steel. Can somebody tell me what kind of gravers are the more used for this task, where can I find their measures and profiles, and some information about how they should be used in the job? I know this is not a simple question, but I would appreciate very much your orientation. Any guidance about a good and complete book in this matter would be also well recived.

Thank you.



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You're very naive.




But then, I guess I must be too, as I'm going the through the very same thing. ;)


Check out the thread on 'Heat treatment' in the Metalwork forum, by Phil White. An excellent start into making them for yourself.

Look at every photo you can in this forum with regard to chisel technique, shape of the graver, angle the graver is held to the work, etc.

Google search - some graver geometries I have found on there.

I even bought some old gravers off of ebay to see the geometry and to practice with before I started trying to make my own.

Buy yourself some mild steel, some brass and practice!

Will more than likely look like the hind leg of a lame donkey, well mine does anyway, but I guess that's part of the learning curve.


I've used a decent quality Dremel, but to my eye, a proper chisel cut looks so much more refined and elegant. No comparison really.


I've also searched for books to no avail. I know Ford Hallam has said he is making some diagrams of gravers and punches in another thread hereabouts, and I am keenly waiting for that to happen. Until then, trial and error.

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Hi Gonzalo,


at first a welcome to you and all the others who found the path.


You`re asking a simpel but also very difficult question. :D


Engraving and chasing are technological very simpel but demanding a lot of skill. It will take a lot of training to get presentable results. Here is a link to Ganoksin. These guys translated an old German teacher in the field of goldsmithing.


Erhard Brepohl @ Ganoksin


When you are in blades and knifes you will find it easy to make your own chisels and burins from blanks, just keep in mind that these are blades to cut metal. Use compareable blunt angles or the edge breakes. ;) A lot of fun with your test plates....




PS: Here is an english book on the subject but I dont know if it will be helpful to you.Art of Engraving

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