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Rare Metalsmithing Books - Releases for July 2011

Digital Antique Books - Jewelry History Brought Alive
Update for July / 2011

Over the last three decades we have acquired over 40 rare historical
Metalsmithing books that we will make available to jewelers,
goldsmiths and the metalsmithing community.

These books cover special techniques in depth like chasing,
repousse, engraving, niello making, Japanese chiseling, soldering,
construction, patination and metal coloring, silversmithing and
more. There are many recipes for alloys and metal surface

The manuscripts will be gradually published in a digital format over
the coming months.

For the first time in history, these ancient metal tricks and
recipes will be made available to the contemporary community of
curious artists and metalsmiths. This will allow the
reader to apply the simple and ingenious procedures used by the
jewelers of the past, long dead masters of the art of metalsmithing.
Many of the tricks and recipes described will save the maker money,
as older approaches can sometimes replace modern tools.

We invite you to own the entire collection of manuscripts, and
benefit from the ancient wisdom that we are presenting., while
supporting the Ganoksin Project.

Each pdf is a full digital book of searchable text and images, with
an easy access through an interactive table of contents.

The cost is 1.35 US$ per eBook for a single user license which
allows you to install, read and print the material on a single

Learn More

New Releases for July 2011

The Art of Enamelling Upon Metal by Alexander Fisher, 1905

Price: 1.35 US$

This antique book on enameling gives a clear window into enameling
in the 19th century and the debates on legitimizing craft work as
fine art equal to painting, sculpture etc in importance and
vitality. This book provides a unique philosophical snapshot of the
time, with its deep and impassioned arguments for enameling as high
art. Quotes from William Blake, Goethe and others give a context for
enameled work. Design principles and the history of enameling are
dealt with. There is lots of technical as well. Plenty
of discussion of color, and how it is used and works with different
kinds of enamel and techniques. There is a really complete approach
to enameling and to the preparation of the metal surfaces under
them. There are actual recipes for making your own enamels using
silica and metal oxides, making fluxes, even colored fluxes at
different firing ranges. (You would need a lab to do this, as many
contain some lead). This kind of is simply not available
elsewhere. Medieval enameling techniques, and those from the late
19th century are discussed at length. There are many pictures of
enameled objects in black and white, and colored plates as well.
Published in 1905, lots of photos and a number of drawings.

File Size: 16.50MB, 113

The Jewelry Repairer’s Handbook by John Keplinger, 1902

Price: 1.35 US$

A wonderful 1902 book full of jeweler’s secrets and repair
techniques. Chapters include bench design, tools, chemicals, tables
and recipes, how to use gold testing acids, making rings, eyeglass
frame repair, jewelry repair and, oddly, disposing of unclaimed
repair work. Keplinger was a good writer and the text is readable
and professionally detailed. This book may cover more repair detail
well than any other.

It is interesting to see how many of the tools are exactly the same,
the main differences have to do with power tools like using a bow
drill. There are lots of good descriptions, and of tool making and
adapting, many of them, like wax boxes, or clamping tweezers are
still hand made today. The chemicals for a workshop are described
and how to make them, as well as precise directions for pickle,
anti-oxidizer, soft solder remover and many others. As with all such
old books avoid the recipes with toxic materials like cyanide.

Alloying is dealt with in the context of ring making and the whole
process is really well described, melting, casting into a charcoal
block, blowpipe use, working the metal, ring sizing. The chapter on
repairing glasses frames is really thorough and detailed. The
section on jewelry repair is just as well described, catches, making
pinstems, straightening wire, repairing rings with settings, new
prongs, stonesetting, shanks, buckles, bracelets, chains and all the
repair issues one see today. There is a section on fixing brass
musical instruments. Even basic refining to reclaim gold is
addressed. Polishing and its tools and procedures are well covered.
Electroplating too. The last section deals with organizing repair
envelopes and communicating with customers who have not picked up
work. An excellent book.

There are some jeweler’s notes in the margins and blank pages on
amber, alloying and gold plating recipes. 102 packed

File Size: 5.12MB, 102 Pages


Previous Releases

Recommended: Watchmakers’ and Jewelers’ Practical Receipt Book, 1892

Price: 1.35 US$

This is a book of bench tricks, recipes and tricks written in 1892
compiled and published by the Hazlitt company in Chicago. Called ‘A
workshop companion’ it is full of rare, forgotten recipes and arcane
jeweler’s knowledge. The front page says “compiled from Private
Formulae” by the Hazlitt Company in Chicago. It covers "Practical
formulae and directions for solders and soldering, cleaning,
pickling, polishing, coloring, bronzing, staining, cementing,
etching lacquering, varnishing and general finishing of metals as
applied to the watch and jewelry trade, together with all the
important alloys used by the trade and many miscellaneous recipes"
The patination recipes are truly interesting, as are the polishing
compounds and alloys including early references to different ways of
making blue gold and other odd alloys. A real treat, a book that
sells for hundreds of dollars, if you can even find a copy.

128 pages jammed full of . File Size: 6.65MB, 128 pages

Recommended! The Private Book of Useful Alloys and Memoranda for
Goldsmiths, Jewellers by James Collins, 1871

Price: 1.35 US$

This 1871 book was compiled from the in-house notes of “one of the
largest and most eminent Manufacturing Goldsmiths and Jewellers in
this country” which had gone out of business, thus freeing Mr.
Collins to reveal the companie’s secrets and experience. Much of the
book is alloy recipes for all different purposes, such as enameling
gold alloys, gold for making pens, gold and silver solders. There
are sections on refining, on ‘coloring’ the gold (depletion
gilding). There are 96 pages of alloying and trade secret
and 36 pages of intriguing advertisements for books
being published in 1872.

File Size: 3MB, 132 pages.

Repousse Work for Amateurs by L. L. Haslope

Price: 1.35 US$

(subtitled “Being the Art of Ornamenting Thin Metal with Raised
Figures”) Another book essential for the serious chaser! This one
concentrates on details of chasing, tools, working methods. Includes
a number of metal working techniques as well, sawing finishing etc.
It is 103 pages (and a number of further pages of fascinating

File Size: 6.17MB, 103 pages.

Recommended: Educational Metalcraft by P. Wylie Davidson, 1913

Price: 1.35 US$

This book, originally published in England in 1913 covers repousse,
fine chasing, silversmithing, jewellery and enamelling. It is part
of Longman’s technical handicraft series of books. Inspired by the
Arts and Crafts movement it details the practical ways that are not
touched on as deeply in most texts since. The drawings are
excellent, clear and insightful. Like, really excellent. Along with
exceptional chasing and repousse there are surprises,
like the many pages of wire and sheet metal strip twisting examples
for borders and decoration. The section on enameling is unusual in
its early viewpoint, grinding lump enamel being the only option, and
firing trivet designs of interest. It has over 378 illustrations,
beautifully hand drawn and carried out.

File Size: 22MB, 227 pages.

Metal-Work, Chasing and Repousse for Home Art Workers by Frank G
Jackson, 1903

Price: 1.35 US$

The subtitle of this book is “Chasing and Repousse for Home Art
Workers”. It was published in 1903. This book deals mostly with
chasing and repousse Really great engravings and
drawings to show tools, exercises and pieces. One of the few to show
tool holding positions in the hand. Lots of drawings of chasing tool
ends and shapes. There are a number of specific projects described,
some hardware oriented. This book is an essential reference for the
serious chaser.

File Size: 19MB, 62 pages.

Decoration of Metals - Chasing, Repousse and Saw Piercing by John
Harrison, 1894

Price: 1.35 US$

Published in 1894. This heavily illustrated book, many photographs
and line drawings which cover chasing and repousse in depth and with
subtlety. The hundreds of excellent line drawings of tools, stamps,
and more are excellent. The tool end images are especially clear.
There are many photographs of complex chased trays and other
objects. This is a great book, and essential for a serious jeweler
and chaser.

File Size: 68MB, 164 pages.

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