Engraving and Engraving Tools

Hello Orchidians, Rick Hamilton, and other jewelry engravers out
there. I’ve been reading the digest for quite some time as I’ve been
very busy, but I thought to post and let you and some of the others
who engrave in addition to making jewelry know about a new engraving
tool that is on the market that I found out about and bought to try
out. I have used pneumatics for several years(20+) and this is the
best tool I have ever seen! It works off of an air supply like a
gravermax, but the handpiece is 1/2 the size but still as powerful as
the largest grs handpiece in my opinion. Actually, the handpiece is
roughly the size of a standard graver and handle or about 3" long and
feels and controls in your hand like a traditional graver. They are
each handmade by one of the top engravers in the country, Steve
Lindsay, a well known engraver, toolmaker, and knifemaker who has
been making his own pneumatics and engraving for over 23 years. His
unique patented design differs in that it has no internal spring but
rather a ingenious valve system that moves the piston both directions
by air power. By doing away with the spring, it makes a tool that has
a much wider power range and allows the tool to operate on very low
psi’s so that you can cut a very fine line with it because it doesn’t
have to overcome the resistance of the spring which hampers the very
low end power. If you’ve ever tried to initiate a very precise cut
with a pneumatic, you will know that the point where the handpiece
starts to cut is very sudden on the low end which causes the graver
to take off all of a sudden and to try to get away from you and not a
gradual rise in power. The ones with springs have to have a certain
amount of air power just to start the piston oscillating due to the
resistance of the spring and this interferes with very fine cutting.
This tool is a self oscillator and starts with just the most minute
amount of air pressure. Most of the users of Lindsay’s tool engrave
under 10-40x and extremely detailed scenes, etc., so this is an
issue, that it will cut very very fine cuts. It will execute wide
deep cuts like western scroll easily, in steel even, and then cut
very small, light shading as well without having to change to another
handpiece like the other types of engravers on the market. The tool
is also adjustable as to the length of the stroke which is relative
to it’s hitting power- a short stroke, the hits are very fast and
lighter and a longer stroke, the hits are slower and heavier which
further adds to it’s versatility. The precision that can be acheived
with this tool is amazing. They think that the hits/min are up in the
10s of thousands and this translates into very smooth cuts with no
burs raised. All of these tools are individually made by Steve and
tested by him before they are shipped out, and he does a lot of
follow up after the sale to insure that you can operate it properly
and that it is functioning properly and the manual that accompanies
it is very detailed. My gravermeister hasn’t been used since I got
this tool and is just collecting dust as this tool simply has it
beat, hands down! Anyone that might want to know more about them can
check out Steve’s site at http://www.lindsayengraving.com

*Disclaimer- I have no financial interest in this and receive no
consideration whatsoever from Lindsay Engraving Inc. or Steve Lindsay
in exchange for my opinion. I am simply a very satisfied customer and
user of his tool and trying to let others know about what I think is
the best equipment around for the work we do so that others might
benefit from it.

Ricky Low
Houston, Texas

Ricky hello!

Enjoyed your post on the Steve Lindsay engraver. Yes, it is a
wonderful tool! I am a jeweler, however; not an engraver. The
attributes and qualities of the unit are much improved over other air
systems, (GRS air units, Foredom powergraver, etc.), when considering
specifically engraving, and bright cut, work. When raising beads for
a large stone in white gold, or yellow for that matter, I must give
the nod to the GRS equipment. As a jeweler, I use the Gravermax to:
channel set, bezel set, and tighten stones. I also use it for a
multitude of “you name it” tasks. For an all purpose tool with plenty
of torque and power (the vibration can infrequently be a little
irritating) the GRS equipment is likely the most versatile for the
"jeweler." It is miles ahead of the flex shaft, “rat-a-tats” (hammer

For the “engraver,” however, the Lindsay equipment is hands down a
smoother, more controllable, and comfortable experience for graver

A friend has recently purchased the Lindsay unit. He also has the
Gravermax as I do. My discussion here is based on his description,
and delight, I might add. He is taking on the effort of learning
engraving. The Lindsay unit has not retired the GRS unit, from duty.
When graver work is needed he prefers the Lindsay unit, however. I
will try it out in the next few days. From description, it seems I
need to add the Lindsay unit to my tool wish list! My two cents!


Hello Tim

Nice to see you also! But really, I should have stressed the fact that
I was referring to Lindsay’s new tool, the Omega. The original tool,
the Air Chasing Graver IS designed strictly for engraving, really
banknote microengraving when you consider working under a microscope
at 40X, it’s the one Steve himself uses in his work, and this would be
the tool your friend would likely have due to the fact that the newer
and heavier Omega has only come out very recently and only a limited
number have been shipped out so far for trial and evaluation by
working engravers and jewelers. Like I said, he assembles each one
individually in order to satisfy himself that it is the very best it
can be when he ships it out, and he puts a lot of time into trial and
evaluation. The new Omega is slightly longer, slightly larger version
of the Air Chasing Graver and it has quite a bit more power. Anyone
that knows Steve Lindsay and his work will know that he’s a very
meticulous guy.You can see it in his engraving and you can see it in
these tools. They are beautifully and precisely made. The Omega comes
with two different sized pistons that allow you to further adjust it’s
‘hit’ to your needs, and I think that the smaller piston comes closer
to the power of the ACG and would be better for very fine engraving. I
work on a lot of things that require a heavy cut or beadwork, etc, so
I need a heavier hammer similar to you, Tim. With the larger piston
and the stroke length set to the longest stroke, I can engrave
anything I can with the heaviest handpiece from GRS using the very
best gravermeister or gravermax I could find in 20 years of looking.
:^) I like this new tool because of it’s size and the fact that it
feels more like a traditional graver in my hand, but it still has
enough power to cut a pretty decent chip out doing some western scroll
or cutting some steel parts. It’s really AWESOME! Check out the
website @ http://www.lindsayengraving.com It has BOTH tools and some
pics of Steve’s work. Happy and Prosperous New Year to you!

Best Regards-
Ricky Low