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[Source] Carving Chisels

Hello group,

I’ve returned to working on a series of heavy buckles (brass and
silver) and am interested in doing some fairly substantial carving of
the workpieces, primarily to incorporate designs from medieval armour.
In Oppi Untrackt’s earlier work “Metal Techniques for Craftsmen” he
shows a set of Dixon brand Cold Carving chisels (p.74) but I haven’t
been able to find a source for such things.

Can someone suggest a source? Any info at all would be most welcome.

Trevor F

Grobet bought Dixon tools about 40 years ago. You may find what you
want from Grobet
…however; you can sometimes find those nice Dixon pieces offered
on the I’net auctions.


I don’t belive the Dixon tools are made any more. The tool on the
left marked with a fish is probably French or Swiss… The shapes
shown are more or less the shape of engraving gravers but probably
are larger versions. You can find standard engraving cutters
with a Google search. If the standard gravers are too small, you
can forge and shape larger versions per your requirements from
tool steel stock. A simpler way probably is to buy some standard
chisel designs and modify them. A good place for these place like
McMaster Carr:

see page 2178 to start for cape and diamond shaped chisels there
are other forms of chisels and punches that can make a simple
starting place ( page 2130 to start).

Another place is MSC: see page 2280 .
Look at books on chasing and repousse.

I have seen the ubiquitous serving trays being made in the middle
east in a more peaceful interval about 40 years ago. These involve
some basic hand punch raising of the edges followed by carving and
stamping a design which is often inlaid with silver. The carving
was done with chisels a bit larger than standard gravers but the
process was engraving. I believe all the tooling was locally made.
I think the same type work is done in India and Pakistan and their
might be some factory tools made there.


Gesswein sells a set of chisels for metal. The alternative would be
to make them. You can get High carbon steel from hobby shops or
hardware stores ( it’s the piano wire that’s sold in those displays
with copper and brass tubing. 1/4" is thick enough. there’s a book
called “the Making of Tools” which should tell you how to anneal and
work harden the steel. Or let me know, and I’ll write more.


Hello group,

I’m posting this follow-up to close the loop on my source request.
One of our members, Gail, contacted me offlist to let me know the
Gesswein has a set of these carving chisels, item number 166-9990,
and they’re pretty much exactly what I was looking for. Thank you
Gail and thank you Orchid members!

Trevor F