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Everything posted by tsterling

  1. Very cool! Beautiful work on all levels. Thanks for showing it. Tom
  2. Thanks, JD! I appreciate the kind words. Tom
  3. Thaks for the superlatives, guys! Glad you've enjoyed Serge's and my efforts - I know we both enjoyed making and showing them to you! I'm looking forward to more colaborations in the future! Tom
  4. This “Steampunk Viperfish” was definitely the most complex engraving I've ever done, and while it was only 1 5/8 inches in diameter, that turns out to be quite a lot of real estate - over two square inches to engrave. Add in the large number of inlays (seven inches of gold wire), and it all adds up to about 30 hours of engraving (although I did have to find some time to make two beading punches for the little round rivets - and it turns out titanium isn't very cooperative with beading punches, so I need to “refresh” these). This was a special version of Serge Panchenko’s Coin Claw pendant
  5. What Dave said! I've faced this dilemma all my adult life, and all I can say is that computers have freed my mind, not restricted it. The answer is for you to become what I call a "Renaissance Man" (or "Person" if you prefer). That means you must know EVERYTHING about SOMETHING, and a LOT about EVERYTHING ELSE. And that SOMETHING MUST have a real job attached to it at the end - so no Art History, Gender Studies, Liberal Arts, yada yada yada..... Yes, the job will change as the years go by, but a Renaissance Man has the ability to change with it, and is CREATIVE enough to embrace the ne
  6. Hi Guys, Thanks for the kind words. I always appreciate the feedback. These were a lot of fun - it was just one of those projects that just comes together, and everything falls into place. I live for those! Tom
  7. Hi Folks, Here are two knife scales I just finished for William Henry Studios. This is their B10 model, and the scales are 416 stainless steel. I’ve placed one main inlay on them, a longhorn beetle in shibuichi (25% silver, 75% copper) with 24k gold antennae. The other side has a highly carved centipede with 24k gold legs. If you look closely, you might find a small jumping spider as well. I vividly remember seeing one of these bad boy centipedes as a young child in Texas, when I was perhaps 5 or 6. Black body and startlingly yellow legs, it seemed like it was a foot long and struck me
  8. Hi Jake, That one really speaks to me, and I'm not a particular fan of dirks! Good on you... Tom
  9. Great news! What a relief this must be to you - I know I'm relieved. Tom
  10. Hi Daniel, Try looking here for some insights on etching by Sr. Antonio Montejano: http://www.engraverscafe.com/showthread.php?5369-William-Henry-by-Montejano Sr. Montejano creates very fine etchings, although I believe he combines the etching tehnique with engraving. He has a number of threads at the Engraver's Cafe, so a search would be in order - I don't know if you need to be a member to search or not. You will also find a good article by Barry Lee Hands here (the etching part starts on page 6): http://www.engraverscafe.com/showthread.php?11981-Carved-Lee-Helgeland-Winches
  11. Dave, I thought Alaskatians were supposed to be tough? I grew up in Florida - I don't recall noticing it was unusually hot, although it could get really frigid in winter... At least the plexi will keep snakes out of the shop. Don't be a wuss! Now I'm waiting for the picture of a red hot blade stuck in the plexi door 'cause the munchkin closed it while you weren't looking... I'm on board with the pipe bellows thingy, though, so all other peccadillos are forgiven. Tom
  12. For quick and dirty, I use Birchwood Casey Super Blue (cold gun blue), probably available in a hardware store or gun shop near you. Clean metal, paint on with Q Tip, wait a few minutes, wash off with soap and water. Lather, rinse, repeat as required. Cut back lightly with 0000 steel wool for highlights. Not anywhere near the traditional Japanese procedure, but darkness will result. Tom
  13. Very well done, Gerhard! Clever and attractive - I would say there is a little bit of raven in you. Love the carved feather, too. Tom
  14. I have to agree with C Craft, Miles. Somebody is going to talk you out of that one, so you better make another right now! Tom
  15. John, are you using a centrifugal, vacuum or steam caster for such a small casting? If not, then you probably have more than temperature problems. Molten bronze in small quantities has a high surface tension (notice it forms a high curved surface when you melt a small blob), so it will not flow well into tiny areas without some sort of pressure behind it. As Jerrod alludes to, a 30 pound pour creates its' own pressure thanks to gravity, but a few ounces won't without encouragement. Anything that slows down the flow will allow the metal to harden and choke off unfilled areas. So, really la
  16. Thanks, guys! George, I think I'm going to need at least 15 steps... Tom
  17. Hi Guys, Thanks for the encouraging words! Hope to see some of you at the show - be sure and let me know you're Bladesmith Forum dudes...it will be great to put some live faces to the names and swap some lies. Hi Owen, I sell most of my work through BladeGallery.com. Here's a link to my page and my available work: http://www.bladegallery.com/shopdisplayproducts.asp?id=721&cat=Sterling%2C+Tom If you scroll down, you can read my bio, and see the sold work from days gone by...much of it somewhat twisted as well! Oh, did you mean the twisted handle? Hi Paul, None of the
  18. I've been working like a maniac to finish up knives and jewelry for the 1st Annual Seattle International Knife Show the last weekend of April. This is my first time showing at a knife show, so wish me luck! First off, here's the jewelry. Clockwise from the top - Titanium/shibuichi/gold dragonfly and cherry blossom pendant, next is a copper/titanium/silver zombie hummingbird skull dog tag, then a titanium shishiaibori-style cave painting pendant, and last the copper/titanium/silver flayed face dog tag. Engraved Spyderco Cricket "Puget Sound" in NW Native American style The "
  19. Hi Scott, Looks like you need a crook knife to smooth the interior your kuksa/noggin. Here's a link to a tutorial on my blog about making a crook knife: http://sterlingsculptures.com/wp/?p=233 Since you are a blade smith, this should present no problem to you. You'll also need something like this to smooth the interior of your antler sake cup. I think the little scrapers I talked about earlier could easily be turned into a "crook" scraper for the same thing. A large part of carving is cobling together a special tool to do some particualr task. A lot like bladesmithing... And
  20. Dang, Scott, you've got it bad. Well, there's nothing that will cure you other than going ahead and making it. Been there, done that, got waaaaaaay more t-shirts than I need. To help you on your carving adventure, have you seen Clive Hallam's “Shirley Temple” scrapers for wood/antler/ivory? Here are parts 1, 2 and 3: http://followingtheironbrush.org/viewtopic.php?f=57&t=1361 http://followingtheironbrush.org/viewtopic.php?f=57&t=1494 http://followingtheironbrush.org/viewtopic.php?f=57&t=1859 And here is my version for scraping in metal: http://followingtheironbrush
  21. Hi Scott, You know, I really don't have much problem with your snail. It has a real rustic charm, to paraphrase Alan, kind of a snail version of Bill the Cat. I suspect you were reaching for a perfect spiral and finely modeled snail, but much of the art so prized by Japanophiles is rustic charm, not perfection. The shell reminds me a lot of the loopy/smoky spirals in Oriental art that represent clouds or smoke. I'm betting if you were to do a perfect version of this snail and show both together, this "rustic" version would be the one most people would choose to take home with them.
  22. Wuss! Real men age gracefully. Get your damn bifocals, just like me. Then get your optometrist to finagle your close prescription with a little extra magnification set for the distance you like to work close at, just like me. Get a set of single vision glasses with just that prescription for shop work, make sure they are safety glass, not plastic so they don't scratch so bad (grinders and abrasives, remember!) and be careful walking around with them on since you can't see the floor well. Wear your special glasses with the Optivisor and life will be much better. Then say the Bladesmith
  23. Very pretty, Gabin! Great shape and coordinated viual qualities. Be sure and show us the sheath when you're done. Tom
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