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Old 09-11-2008, 06:43 PM
cwbyengraver cwbyengraver is offline
Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 37
Default Tom's Contest Submission

When you start getting good enough to show some friends, everyone says the same thing. ďI have a gun. Iíll let you engrave on.Ē So, I decided to say okay. And off I wentÖThe gun is a Springfield Armory 45. I started the project by drawing the design on the front left of the slide freehand and did not make a copy. Then, I inlayed gold in the lettering and polished the gold flat. However, during the inlay process I lost the design that I drew. So, I tried to redraw the design from memory. The design looked good, but it did not look as good as it did the first time. Working under a microscope, I began cutting when about 2/3 way through the design I discovered that every time I had wiped the chips away. They went through the gold and scratched the lettering. The rest of the slide went well. The slide was engraved on both sides. The owner liked it so much; he decided that the rear of the slide behind the grip needed to be engraved also. I photographed the slide and covered the engraved and inlayed areas. Under the microscope at high power, I drew the design on the back of the slide. It was really nice and easy to draw under the microscope; it made my canvas huge. I engraved the design and took it out from under the microscope. Darn! The scale was wrong in comparison to the sides of the slide. I should have NEVER started cutting before checking the back design with the rest of the slide. I took a month off from this project and read through both of Ron Smithís books. In reading, I knew I needed to start drawing and practicing with smaller stuff. After a while, my scrolls and designs were a lot smoother and flowed much better when I began working on the top of the slide. Now, with the project complete the .45 looks as if it were engraved by 3 different people. During this project, I learned many things that I needed to do with every project that I tackle.

Tomís Project Rules
1.Draw the design in its entirety from start to finish and make a copy or template of the design.
2.After inlaying gold, especially under the microscope, cover the inlay before cutting the design because it is easy to forget about the inlay and scratch the gold.
3.Always check your design size with the rest of your project before ever cutting.
4.Be careful, as a beginner, of the length of time you take away from a project, it can affect your cutting profoundly because you can quickly advance your skill to the next level.
5.Practice drawing every opportunity you have because it makes a difference in your design flow.
6.Start and finish projects one at a time. I have several projects, mostly knives; Iíve started and then stopped because I have a better idea for a different knife. And when I go back to finish the other knife, I realize that my cutting flow and style has improved then I donít want to finish it because it will look like 2 different people engraved it.
7.One last rule, practice taking pictures so they donít stink!:willy_nilly:
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Pat's Gun 001.jpg (45.4 KB, 118 views)
File Type: jpg Pat's Gun 002.jpg (65.2 KB, 96 views)
File Type: jpg Pat's Gun 006.jpg (28.7 KB, 110 views)
File Type: jpg Pat's Gun 007.jpg (23.8 KB, 96 views)
File Type: jpg Pat's Gun 008.jpg (27.2 KB, 89 views)
File Type: jpg Pat's Gun 009.jpg (27.7 KB, 76 views)
File Type: jpg Pat's Gun 010.jpg (23.8 KB, 84 views)