Back to Ganoksin | FAQ | Contact

Carving stones with a gravermax

Hello Orchidians. I recently bought a gravermax G8 and I’ve been
getting a feel for the tool. i heard that the gravermax can be used
to carve stone.

i was wondering if anybody had any experience on the subject who
could help shed some light on the details. do you use a standard
carbon steel Burin? what hardness or types of stones/gems can you
carve. can you work glass with this device or is to likely to
shatter? i would think you could carve the stones that are often used
for sculpture such as marble or alabaster. but what about lapis,
malachite, jade or agate?

Thank You all!
-David Pogue

lapis, malachite are soft, agate harder as is jade (nephrite) but
carbon steel burins are great-However, you must run them with a good
lubricant drip though to keep their temper. HSS steel gravers are
less likely to overheat, but just that- less-…anything you carve
from fluorite to quartz has to have a lubricant, and liquids are
best. I don’t know about glass. although now that I think about it we
used marbles with which to learn carving and faceting later than
that,(both were years ago now !) so it must be ok. Wear eye
protection regardless. and don’t get in the habit of putting your
face over the work. sit back with the work at a comfortable height
given the design of your bench. and whether traditional or not (eye
height being that of a traditional bench for most adults).Have an
eyewash station or at least a bottle of it on hand when carving hard
stone (or glass). ther is no need to buy super high quality valtitan
gravers or fancy gravermax branded burins to learn with. a standard
vigor/grobet tool will do. as long as it fits the handpiece’s system
9 I accidentally ordered some gravers that were the really short type
with a snap style tab for gravermax they aren’t practical for
anything except using with a gravermax, though others can be used
interchageabley by simply braking off the tang- so don’t invest in
excellent quality yellow tang gravers as it’s pointless for carving
exclusively. If doing fine hand engraving too, then a good set of
standard gravers and a liner or two for decoration may be in
order).Oh, back to malachite, azurite, etc. material that is soft and
in layers tends to crumble (covellite is another rough similar in
MOH’s scale to lapis, turquoise, malachite,etc. that has striations,
bands, or otherwise "veins’ of different minerals running through
them randomly that will crumble away if you don’t really examine the
structure and cleavage - that is if the material has defined cleavage
planes at all given its verified crystalline structure -some material
is harder if you aren’t certain what it is (i. e.-bytownite, mexican
opal, fire opal, rainbow hematite, then there may be some material
you may want to recut and didn’t know it was soudee or doublets,
triplets, etc. when yu agreed to do the job for a client and they
were told it was “x”, and it turns out to be something else- so
acknowledge the risks when accepting materials not definitely “x” and
that they may be destroyed in the recutting or carving process and
your disposition beyond that disclaimer.). Hope this helps. rer