As a part of my ECMP 355 course (Computers in Education), I am to engage in a personal learning project this semester. It was difficult for me to choose a subject! There are so many things I want to learn, but I wanted a skill or hobby that I’ve never tried before
As my husband and I drove from Calgary on Thursday we bandied a few ideas around, but many of our ideas were things I’ve tried before (such as sewing, leather tooling and painting). As we drove by Brooks, an idea hit me! Metal engraving! I’ve never worked with metal and I can incorporate those skills with my other hobbies (mainly leather work, I can create conchos to place on my leather work!) and I can share my newfound skills with my family and friends!
After I decided what I wanted to do, I needed to find information on how to get started. This took some googling while my awesome husband drove (thanks, honey!). Wikihow is the first link to pop up, followed by an article titled “how to do engraving easy and make it look decent” on instructables.com. The second article was about labeling tools with the owner’s name, rather than the art of metal engraving.
Wikihow recommends the use of a pneumatic graver (what the heck is that?) but other options are a hammer and chisel, a Dremel tool or a craft knife. I began the search for a pneumatic graver, they come highly recommended by a few different websites and engraving forums. One problem, I am just learning and this is a professional tool (not to mention out of my price point at the moment). More searching found a forum post on handengravingforum.com titled “A Beginner’s Progress Plans, Tutors Tips and Informational Link” and it is gold. I would have spent a lot of money on a tool that I am not ready to handle without this post! The author shared pictures of his hand gravers that were his first tools, before he moved on to a pneumatic graver.
Although the Wikihow article had simple steps and urges the reader to learn more about engraving, it left many details out (like the hand graver). In addition to learning about hand engraving, my first foray into learning on the internet made me realize a few things: keep digging (sometimes more information is needed), there are people out there that are willing to help you get started, bookmark anything you make think is relevant to your subject (I now have a folder in my bookmarks for engraving information so I don’t lose it!).
I am looking forward to learning more about metal engraving and sharing my journey with you! I can’t wait until my tools arrive in the next few weeks (thanks to Amazon!).
Until next time, keep learning!