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Please Allow Me To Introduce Myself...


John P.

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Hi, I am John Pilkington from a small village near Doncaster in South Yorkshire in the UK. As you can probably guess I have just joined "the Path". I have a confession to make, I have been engraving on metal for a full 4 days, I picked up my very first push graver on Friday and today is Monday; so to say that I am new to the ways of carving is a bit of an understatement.

 

My main area of interest is actually not engraving at all (please do not hold this against me, all will become clear), I repair and would like to start making clocks. Now I am not talking about the type of clock that you stick a battery in, I am talking about real clocks; little time engines many of which can be a hundred or more years old and with just a little bit of attention carry on telling time and will do so for years.

 

But before I loose you all please allow me to get to the point. I want to begin making clocks from old materials, clock movements that are over 120 years old are very easy to aquire, however quite often their cases have long since decayed. I want to build cases for these time machines but instead of using new timber I would like to use wood that is recycled from broken furniture that is also over 100 years old. But I do not want to make reproduction clocks and try to pass them off as old (something that has been known to happen). I have an idea for a series of clocks that show off their movements... and finally he gets to the point... I would like to engrave the brass plates (the front and back of the movement) to make them more aesthitically pleasing, as the movement will be clearly visible through the dial of the clock.

 

However, this plan has a number of possible flaws, and the biggest is that I do not know how to engrave, but I want to learn.

 

Unfortunatly I am no longer in employment (but that is another story) so I have plenty of time and I want to learn.

 

I realise that engravers in the past began their carier at the age of 14 and that I am way past that at the age of 52 but I want to learn.

 

And that is why I am here. As you can imagine there are a great many other things about me that at this moment in time are not relivant to this forum but which you may find out as time goes by. But what is relivent is this; I want to engrave onto brass using the simpleist of tools, a sharp piece of metal, I have been making attempts at engraving for a whole 4 days and so far all I have done is lower the price of scrap metal... But I want to learn!

 

Thank you for taking the time.

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Hi John,

 

Nice introduction and I didn't get lost by the way ;)

Seems like you have a plan, hopefully it will work out, but with the right will everything is possible.

Good luck on your journey,and have fun and yeah I was going to forget, Welcome around....

 

Christophe

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John,

 

Welcome to the world of push graving. Your beginnings sound familiar as I was in the exact place not so long ago. My original goal as an engraver was limited to providing a little bit of style to my building projects.

 

The engraving and carving process sucked me into a vortex and I must confess that I never finished my original project. Instead I stumbled across an art process that motivates me day in and day out and unlike other mediums continues to do so over 5 years later.

 

Have fun and don't get frustrated,

 

John

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Welcome to the path. Your idea sounds cool. I hope that things work out with it. Don't get frustrated. There is a learning curve to every art form that you learn, and engraving is much the same. just keep at it. You will see your efforts pay off, if you just keep at it.

 

Peace,

Rod

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Thanks for the warm welcome everyone, I've already found a few useful things here. DanM I've taken a look at the two sites you mentioned already, but they seem to be mainly concerned with airgravers, but there is some stuff on there. Thomas, I took a look at Rima's site nice artwork, shame about the batteries. Jim, we Pilkingtons are few and far between but we do crop up in suprising places. The main message I have taken so far is that the curve of learning is steep... don't get frustrated and stick with it. Now its back to the graver for more practice, who ever thought that keeping between the lines was so difficult?

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John while it may be that most of the engravers on those forums use power-assist, the critical thing to understand about engraving, regardless of the power source, is the point geometry. The principles behind forming the tools remains the same regardless whether they're pushed by a hammer, chucked in a handpiece or pushed by palm-burin. If you do keep at it there is a certain point where it makes intuitive sense and you can decide how to pick and choose between the variables.

 

You might find these two threads helpful:

 

http://www.thecarvingpath.net/forum/index.php?/topic/1786-engraving-basics/page__hl__gravers

 

http://www.thecarvingpath.net/forum/index.php?/topic/35-gravers/page__hl__gravers

 

As well as this: http://forums.dfoggknives.com/index.php?showtopic=16622&st=0

 

Jim

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Jim, thanks for the encouragement and the helpful advice, I had a go at making a graver today....mmm! not as pretty as the dowel ones in your photos but I managed to cut with it, I will attenpt another one later, hopfully what I learned making the first will improve the second. Still having problems with curves but I suspect that it may be down to not having the right graver.

 

Cheers

John

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