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How should I go about engraving this handle? Answered

So I've recently being trying to replicate Prince Nuada's spear from Hellboy II, and it seems that the hardest bit will be the middle bit with all its fancy engravings and whatnot (The section between the blade and the handle). Im unsure what I should use and how exactly to engrave it all. I would really rather not resort to painting it on, but if I engrave it into wood I'm worried that after a couple of coats of primer and paint I will loose all the detail. I want it to be fairly strong so I may have to resin over the engravings if I dremel the design out of wood, which would make it even less visible.

What do you think would be the best way to engrave it all out?


Sure!Do what your heart desires.

Easy for you to say §

If i were doing this i would carve or burn it into the wood of the handle.
The seal the wood with a durable black primer. Then adhere a heavy gold or brass foil to the raised portions of the design like a filagree covering

Fiberglass and resin would work well it would cover the previous engraving and you could use a dremel or carving knives i've carved out alot of stuff in fiberglass i would use a tight sheet a good fine woven sheet will go a long way and after it sets it's very strong http://www.fiberglasswarehouse.com/weave2.php

ou can gelcoat it after sanding which will protect it after engraving gelcoat fills the little pockmarks left by the resin and cloth and you can stencil engrave or form it in any combination of your choice 

Wear protective breathing gear and gloves you don't want this stuff to mess with your nervous system 


5 years ago

I would take a copper or brass pipe and use tape or something like rubylith
Then use a fine exacto knife to cut the pattern and simply etch away exposed
metal to make the amazing artful representation.
Very much like a PCB ion exchange solution.

It is simple to darken the depressions to mimic the vid source.


5 years ago

copy print and transfer it as a mask then sandblast (use vinyl), paint/black epoxy it, sand back the high points then use a high grade solvetn proof clear.
or use an overhead projector to mark the image out for engraving tool/ burning tool,
or wrap the handle in paper neatly cut to size, unwrap it that should give you a rough template to upload along with the design and overlay the two so they match, print it then use lead pencil to cover the design on the inside, re-wrap the handle, secure with tape, rub it with a coin, remove paper. should give you an accurate reproduction in pencil to engrave, or carve. good luck

to me the part that isn't wrapped in leather looks like wood that has been pyrographed on with a wood burning tool turned on a low heat. However, if its metal the it could be acid etching.

Do what they did, go to your local feed mill get a wood crop handle with a braided handle grip and make the pattern in the wood with a wood burning kit.

Carve it in wax, pour plaster over that. Pour brass in plaster mold. Fill the low parts with black tinted epoxy.


5 years ago

To me it looks to be a leather wrap which would not have been uncommon. The leather gives it grip and also cushioning. So, you cut out the correct size of leather. Then lay it flat and do all the embossing, which is done with leather tools and a mallet. Then you glue it to the shaft and put metal bands on it (you see one at the bottom) to help keep it from peeling off. You can color the leather anything you want with leather dyes.

Thanks that will be helpful later on, but the part I was actually talking about was the middle brassy/bronzey looking section.


5 years ago

I don't know how detailed you want it but if you're wanting a stage prop rather than an exact replica, here's how I would do it:
Paint the section in whatever you want for the base color, then lightly rough the entire section with 400 grit wet or dry sandpaper.
Draw the design on with a black Sharpie and then clear coat it with a satin finish clear acrylic or polyurethane paint.

What about painting that section first, then engraving the design?

You could then use a fine brush to fill in the engraving with a darker shade of the overall colour.

You could get some clay (or even wax) to design the shape and all the engraved details (for a positive copy); and then use a latex rubber, plaster, expanding foam, or an alginate to make a 2 part negative mold. Then use a material that you can pour into the mold to create this part of the handle. There are many durable options that you could tint to just about any color, (but make sure that all the materials in each step work together). Then its just a matter of highlighting the details which could be done with paint to fill in the recesses and then you wipe it off the raised portions (so the painted portion is darker and the lighter color is the base material). For assembly, you can either attach the parts during the molding stage, or create a void for the parts or just drill out a hole in both ends.

If you plan to resin over a wood shaft why not engrave the resin?

If i where doing this to be a nice show piece i would carve a mold and cast it in resin, leaving a space so you can slide the finished product onto whatever shaft your using in the middle of the weapon.

If you make the engraving deep enough you won't have to worry about loosing definition. Besides with a bit of paining in the groves you can make the engraving more defined. No clear coat should diminish that.