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etching on damascus?

Joined
Sep 2, 2011
Messages
1,000
ok i am using vinegar and salt heated up to etch my buddies alabama damascus blade. but his girl friend wants me to ingrave the initials on it and i was thinking that i could put some glue on it or something to prevent the acid from etching that part to do this.

is this possible if so what can i use? thanks for your help
 

tattooedfreak

Steel mutilater is more like it.
Joined
Mar 12, 2010
Messages
971
If you just want initials, use nail polish but don't etch for too long at a time or you will eat under the polish and ruin the etch. try it for 30 sec to 1 min, remove, rinse, check the blade for the look you want.. repeat.
 

Stacy E. Apelt - Bladesmith

ilmarinen - MODERATOR
Moderator
Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider
Joined
Aug 20, 2004
Messages
34,110
Use a Sharpie marker pen.

Sand the blade smooth and clean it until completely clean. Mask off any area that you don't want etched with a Sharpie Permanent Marker Pen - the tang,the ricasso, etc. - and any initials wanted to stay shiny and smooth.
Etch the blade in 5:1 FC. Check by taking out and gently rinsing off every few minutes. When the blade is etched the amount desired. Wash well, neutralize with TSP or Windex, boil for ten minutes, and hand sand lightly to restore the brightness (unless leaving the dark color on).
 
Joined
Sep 2, 2011
Messages
1,000
Use a Sharpie marker pen.

Sand the blade smooth and clean it until completely clean. Mask off any area that you don't want etched with a Sharpie Permanent Marker Pen - the tang,the ricasso, etc. - and any initials wanted to stay shiny and smooth.
Etch the blade in 5:1 FC. Check by taking out and gently rinsing off every few minutes. When the blade is etched the amount desired. Wash well, neutralize with TSP or Windex, boil for ten minutes, and hand sand lightly to restore the brightness (unless leaving the dark color on).

so you are saying that sharpie will not let the etch hit the steel? that is awesome will this work with hot vinegar?
 

Stacy E. Apelt - Bladesmith

ilmarinen - MODERATOR
Moderator
Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider
Joined
Aug 20, 2004
Messages
34,110
Yes, a Sharpie pen is what is used to make PC boards when designing electronic circuits. If you order a PC board kit with the FC etchant...it has a Sharpie pen in it. They call it an "Etchant Resist Pen" so they can justify selling it to you for twice what the office supply sells them for.....but it is just a plain old Sharpie Permanent Marker.

Where the black is, the etchant won't etch. By polishing the surface to a fine grit before etching, and then masking the desired shape/lettering with the pen, those marks will stay smooth and shiny while the rest etches as a damascus pattern. Of course, let the ink dry first.

If using a stencil and a electroetcher to make your makers mark, polish the blade,to final finish, etch the makers mark, clean the blade up well, mask off the makers mark area in an oval or other shape, and then etch the damascus blade. Once the etching is done - the makers mark will be in the center of the shiny oval which is on the etched and patterned blade.
 
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