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[Source] Repousse tools


#1

Wondered what those of you who do repousse’ think is the best source
for tools? My husband wants to know what I want for Valentine’s, and
I think that is the answer… Thanks!

Beth Wicker
Three Cats and a Dog Design Studio
http://www.bethwicker.com


#2

Beth- You can make them out of just about anything. Then you can
make any shape or texture you want.

We use smooth drill rod bar stock. It’s available in a number of
different sizes. I also use square and rectangle bar stock. I’ve seen
them made from straightened out old car suspension springs.

Our most precious tools that we have are some chasing tools made by
a late colleague who was a death camp survivor. These particular
chasing tools were made from building spikes that some guards gave
him. I have no idea how he got the metal. He would trade trinkets to
the guards for food. That’s how he made it out alive.

Have fun and make lots of jewelry.
Jo Haemer
www.timothywgreen.com

PS We even used auto body hand anvils and sawed-off croquet mallets
when making a really big copper sculpture once. That was fun.


#3

You are the best source for punches and chisels. One fashions each as
is needed for a particular form. See "The Complete Modern Blacksmith"
for details.

KPK


#4

Put a post to [sandbox at metalartists dot org]. Some of these folks
MAKE the tools you are after and can make “specialty” tools if
needed.

John Dach


#5

Am I allowed to say me? :slight_smile: I really don’t mean this to sound like
shameless marketing. The whole reason that I had these sets made is
because many of my students have not enjoyed the tool making process
as much as they’ve enjoyed doing repousse. The tools were replicated
of 8 (2 line tools, 3 push tools, 3 planishing tools).

Here’s a link to a photo and more info:
http://www.victorialansford.com/reptools.html

Best wishes,
Victoria


#6

As for punches I tend to go with those that say making your own is
the best route. I did that using 1/4" O-1 tool steel bought from
McMaster-Carr. The round stock is pretty reasonable, the square is
much more expensive.

I think the pitch from Northwest Pitchworks is a very good product.
has a pleasant odor also.

Other items I’m not particularly picky about as long as they’re
comfortable and serve my purposes.

Mike DeBurgh, GJG
Alliance, OH


#7

I just got a lovely set of repousse tools from Gene Olson.

http://www.mettleworks.com/sales/thestore.html

Every source seems to have a variation on the basic tools, so look
around to see what you think might suit your plans best.

Pamela


#8

Beth,

Wondered what those of you who do repousse' think is the best
source for tools? My husband wants to know what I want for
Valentine's, and I think that is the answer.... 

I suspect that most of the responses to your question will recommend
that you make your own chasing tools, since that is traditional.
However, I was in a hurry to get started and purchased my set (and
since made a couple more to augment the purchased tools). I remember
being told at the time that not all purchased chasing tools are
created equal, and ended up doing a fair amount of research.
Ultimately, I purchased Stuller’s 22-piece set and am happy with the
surface finish and balance of the tools.

Jamie


#9

If you don’t want to make your own… Liza Nechamkin Glasser, who
used to work at Tiffany & Co., is coming out (very soon) with her
own line to be sold through Otto Frei. Last I knew, the set of around
24 tools includes a range of shapes and sizes of liners, embossers, &
planishers and maybe including some for texturing. These get you
running right out of the box. I had a chance to see her prototypes
in September when I attend her workshop at Peters Valley Craft
Center. This is the nicest set of repousee tools I have seen
available, and have been itching for months to get my hands on a set.

I just got word from her that they are doing final inspection of the
tools, and are also working on the final price. Worth every penny
once they set the price, and I hope Otto Frei sends out an
announcement when they are available.

Kim B.


#10

The idea of tool making for repousse and chasing is that you make
your tools as the need arises. ‘Professionals’ who do this work will
have hundreds of tools accumulated over 100’s of jobs. And if students
don’t like making tools it may not be the best field for them. Tool
making is an integral part of the process.

KPK


#11

I can’t remember, but did Jen Lane ( is that the right name)…the
lady in Fl…manufacture tools? Maybe she needs the business?

http://jenlane.ganoksin.com/blogs/


#12

To add to an earlier response the tools from Gene Olson are modestly
priced. If someone new wanted to try out repousse/chasing, they could
start with a few of these and see if repousse is for them and also
get an idea of what some of the tools look like.

Taking a workshop with someone like Marcia Lewis would be ideal. Her
book i “Chasing” is still available.

KPK


#13

yes I am still in business and still make tools to order but also
have about 100 or so in stock. funny i wanted to make jewelry but
ended up making more tools… my last pece of jewelry a necklace I
traded for a good work bench and a large air tank. any one wanting
tools my turn around for custom work is 1 week and i still have low
prices.

best wishes
jen lane


#14
The idea of tool making for repousse and chasing is that you make
your tools as the need arises. 'Professionals' who do this work
will have hundreds of tools accumulated over 100's of jobs. And if
students don't like making tools it may not be the best field for
them. Tool making is an integral part of the process. 

Unfortunately, for people learning the technique on their own from a
book or video, making the tools can become a "chicken or the egg"
kind of problem. It’s difficult to know the nuances of the shapes of
the tools until someone tries using them, but they can’t use them
until they make them.

Just like in raising with nice hammers, repousse can only be as good
as the tools used to create it, which is why I devoted over an hour
of video time on my Eastern Repousse and Chasing DVD to teaching
people how to make them. (The whole DVD is 5 hours and 23 minutes,
and yes, I’m still recovering from producing it!) Still, I’m not
there in person to say, “No, your large line tool needs to be more
like this,” so I sell them already made and also have them available
for people to use during my workshops, which means I can teach 2 and
3 day repousse workshops instead of needing 5 days.

Speaking as one of those ‘professional’ you mentioned, I only use 8
tools for all of my repousse, as do many other smiths I know. I have
a curve tool that I use once in a blue moon but usually only for
stamping. (Of course, I have lots of stamps I’ve made to create
different textures and patterns, but that’s a different situation.)
Whenever I see huge sets of tools, I’m puzzled by how redundant most
of them seem. I rock back the line tool and use half of it to go
around the curves, which means that one tool does a multitude of
jobs, saving me a great deal of time. If I’m on a roll hammering, the
last thing I want to do is stop the flow of work to hang out at the
grinder for a while.

Once upon a time I too used to be more of a purist and considered
tool making an integral part of the process, but I made a choice
between requiring people to learn the way most of us had to (while
walking to school in the snow uphill both ways) and making the
technique more available to people eager to learn it.

Happy hammering,
Victoria
Victoria Lansford
http://www.victorialansford.com


#15

Jen,

Have you notified the folks on the SandBox (ArtMetal) list that you
make tools??? If not, do so or let me know and I will put in a plug
for you…

John Dach


#16
I only use 8 tools for all of my repousse, as do many other smiths
I know. 

This is absolutely true, and also holds true for most of metal
smithing.

Even though I am the original tool junkie, I never forget that
making good jewellery does not require everything that opens and
shuts.

Basic tools can make excellent jewellery. It all really amounts to
practice and dedication.

That what Victoria has…

Cheers, Hans.
http://www.meevis
http://hansmeevis.blogspot.com


#17

Victoria,

When I was first learning about jewelry at GIA we made a few simple
tools from steel stock. One side of the classroom grinder had a
large Cratex wheel which removed in small amounts and with which it
was easier to make subtle changes in contour and still preserve a
fairly good finish. I chose to mount one in my home grinder, so now I
can easily modify the punches I’ve made without the changes being as
drastic as they could be on a hard grinding wheel. Until I have to
resources to take a class with someone with more experience like
you, this certainly helps.

Mike DeBurgh, GJG
Alliance, OH


#18
Basic tools can make excellent jewellery. It all really amounts to
practice and dedication. That what Victoria has....... 

Wow, thanks, Hans!!! That is quite a compliment, coming from an
artist of your caliber. :slight_smile: I’m a big fan of your work.

For anyone wishing to check out my repousse tools in person, Rio
Grande will have them available at Catalog in Motion in Tucson and
the upcoming SNAG conference in Houston.

Victoria Lansford
http://www.victorialansford.com


#19

I only use 8 tools for all of my repousse, as do many other smiths
I know.

This is absolutely true, and also holds true for most of metal
smithing. 

Your extrapolation from your personal experience is way over the
top.

I have a woman friend, an accomplished jeweler and metal worker
whose father did chasing and repousse as a professional. When he died
she inherited his tools which consisted of two coffee cans filled
with tools (liners, punches) that he used in his career.

Hans, I respect your work but what you and Victoria use for repousse
is not ‘the’ standard.

KPK


#20
Hans, I respect your work but what you and Victoria use for
repousse is not 'the' standard. 

I know I probably should leave the obvious alone, but I’m concerned
with the logic of the reply. Hans’ and my experiences are “over the
top,” but knowing one person, who inherited a large number of tools
is definitive? I’m a bit puzzled by that inconsistency.

Kevin, given your feelings on this topic and your knowledge of the
technique on a personal and professional level, please believe that I
am not suggesting you buy my DVD. FYI in my commitment to helping
sustain the technique, I included an entire segment in which I
interview my teacher from GSU, Gia Gogishvilli and his teacher and
father, Jemal, and show them working on a large piece with only a few
tools. They also discuss the lineage of repousse in Eastern Europe as
well as Jemal’s equally famous teachers and methods of working.

Victoria
Victoria Lansford
http://www.victorialansford.com