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  1. #1
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    Default ---------Straight Lines ------------

    Quick question..."How long did it take you before you could engrave a perfectly straight line, depth, width, ect? over the length of 2 inches. Did two practice plates last night and I was not happy with the results.

    I'm going back to the basics and plan on spending the next 100 or so practice plates just on mastering the fundamentals of the graver. Such as straight lines, curved lines, and the basic movements of Script lettering.

    With my hectic schedule, I found I was all over the place, and most likely failed to master key movements. I think the desire to go back to the basics was sparked by Andrew's post where he said, "we all are busy and we all have full time jobs" or something like that. That was an awakening moment for me as I have accumulated all of the tools, I just always find reasons not to practice ;(.

    Hoping to start fresh, and slowly accumulate my skills each day. I've got it stuck in my head I'll attempt to cut one practice plate a day. Going to be interesting to see what my 100th plate looks like.....I'll post the 1st and last, when I get there....

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  3. #2
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    Jun 2008
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    Ishokenmei: Put a longer heel on your graver. It's better for straight lines, only.

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  5. #3
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    Ishokenmel,
    Cut beside, one side or the other of your marked line. DO NOT cut the line.
    Cutting on the line your graver can wonder off half a graver width before you notice it.
    Also, two or three deep breadths with the last half let out before you start your cut.
    Then concentrate on nothing else. Just like straight shooting with a rifle.
    John B.


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  7. #4
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    Jun 2016
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    Quote Originally Posted by tim halloran View Post
    Ishokenmei: Put a longer heel on your graver. It's better for straight lines, only.
    As a beginner still working on this myself I would also add make sure, to the best you can, make sure the heels are identical on each side of the graver. I'd swear I get push one side to the other even when I think they're the same.

    Jeremy

  8. #5
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    Nov 2006
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    Thank you John for your good advice on cutting next to the line. The only other thing I'd mention is to scribe a fine, sharp line with dividers or a scriber. I find pencil lines for borders are much to thick to follow accurately.

    I have never used a longer heel graver for straight lines. Maybe I'm missing out on something?

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  10. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
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    I agree with John B about cutting next to the line & not directly on top of it.
    In addition, Here's something I tell my students:
    Scribe two parallel lines that are the width of the line you want to engrave
    Simply Make your cut while staying between the lines..... kinda like driving a car.
    Correct body posture; focus; then, before you begin, imagining yourself cutting the line are helpful as well.

    Weldon
    "Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends". John 15:13

    http://www.weldonlister.com

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  11. #7
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    36 yrs and counting. i'll let you know when i get the hang of it. ;-)
    Mitch Moschetti

    MRM ENGRAVING
    www.mrmengraving.com

  12. Likes Ron Jr., bronc, jaydf, mdengraver, gcleaker and 3 others liked this post
  13. #8
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    Aug 2007
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    Default

    Thanks everyone for the quick tips! Practiced on plate two tonight.

    When I get home from work I usually have about an hour before I have to get the twins fed and ready for bed, and I suspect that will be the pattern for a while.

    Tonight I noticed a tremendous improvement from yesterday. Lines were a lot thicker and deeper, and I feel like I was starting to control the graver a little bit better. I'm able to to run a complete line without breaking the coil, just need to work on width and depth.

    I started to practice with different insertion styles and found that if I let the graver dig into the metal a little longer before angling out to cut the line, that I had the best results for depth. No brainer right.....I guess I was just scratching the surface yesterday. I really want to get the depth issue down, as I know I will need this to do gold inlay in the future.

    Yesterday, I was also angling my graver to one side, which would produce a larger "flare" side. Quickly got that knocked off, and had no issues with that today. Checked my heels and they were parallel, and a tad longer then what I see in most graver pictures, but for now they are working for me. However, I will say I found that my lines looked better when I back cut the entire line.

    Question: Do most engravers double cut their lines from start to finish and then finish to start? I also noticed my lines are starting to intercept in the corners a tad bit better.

    Going to be a long road, maybe even longer for me, but I like the idea of working at this a little bit every day. For me it is a hobby, but I'd like to one day be able to engrave Colt's and maybe even try for the Fega Master Engraver title....Big Goal, but I'm willing to put in the effort.

    Here is the Practice Plate I am using, and I believe it was Arnaud who provided it to the forums. After I get my lines down, I'll use this plate to work on boarders.


  14. #9
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    Sam, for my reference at what power are you engraving a standard engraving plate with on your Leica A60? I know at 30, the plate is way to close, but at 5 I can't be certain if I am cutting close to the line or on it. If there is an average power that most engravers should be able to operate at I'd like to focus on that initial sight picture. Of course I believe the answer may be.....depends on the person, but I thought I'd ask.

  15. #10
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    Jan 2012
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    TN
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    Default

    Using a narrower geometry can help with cutting a bit deeper without having to cut too much wider (60-90deg. or onglette)
    Another option is using round or flat gravers to keep the line width even. you still want to follow the scribed line to one side of the graver youre using, but fluctuations in depth will be much more forgiving.

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