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Pressing deep sculptured engraving?


#1

Three years ago I found an old 1915 mechanical 150-ton coining press
on the net. I ended up reworking the vertical slide ways,
straightened the bolster plate and got it going. I have dreams of
what can be done with it in conjunction with hand engraving…but so
far it has been just experimental of making sample engraved dies and
trying them out. Although, I have been making several runs of
engraved copper disks for insets in the butts of the Air Chasing
Gravers. Also made a 1 �" Princess Diana coin die and struck several
of them but discovered the way it is deeply sculptured the silver has
to move around quite a bit to fill out the coin. I have to hit it
with the press 4 or 5 times to get it to fill. I made the rim too
deep and that is where it is having a hard time filling. Thinking
about again I should just cylindrical grind the O.D. down on both
halves taking the deep part of the rim away.This should help it fill
in one to two strickes.

Anyway the question I have is: I have a very old sculptured silver
spoon that I’ve been trying to figure out what the die looked like
that would have formed and blanked it.and hope someone can give some
insight.

Here is a link to three photos of the spoon.
http://www.lindsayengraving.com/spoon.html

The dished out spoon part is .020" (.5 mm) thick silver sheet. The
handle is .080" (2mm) thick silver. It looks like the dished out
spoon part was made with a negative/positive die. I am interested in
how they blanked it out. One of the photos is a close-up of the back
edge of the spoon. Notice how the metal on the edge is bent slightly
down (up in the photo). It seems like this should be a clue to how it
was done. There must be an easy way to do it that I’m not thinking
of. Does anyone have ideas on how they did this long ago? Could they
have formed it and while it was still in the male and female die they
pulled and pushed and hit and cut the excess off leaving just this
little overhang?

Also for the forming die how did they make a matching half after one
half was engraved and sculptured? One idea is maybe make one half,
hardened it and then heat a blank up cherry red and push the master
into the blank. It seems like the heat wouldn’t be good on the
master but if it was a quick strike in a big press maybe the heat
wouldn’t have time to damage the master.

Thank you for any added help or suggestions what the process is to
produce a spoon like this.

Steve Lindsay
Hand Engraving
http://www.lindsayengraving.com
Air Chasing Graver
http://www.lindsayengraving.com/airgraver