I started off today messing around with the dremel tool seeing if i could engrave things and generally what i could do with it. I wanted very simple design so that i wouldn't end up messing it up.
That's where the thought of nordic runes came in. With their simple straight line designs i thought they'd be an idea place to start engraving.
Whilst i was looking through imaged of runes and nordic symbols i remembered one of my friends always wears a protection rune whilst he's kayaking, that inspired me to make some protection charm type of things.
After a little research into runes and their meanings i decided on three with a general protection/ water/ kayaking theme. (These might not make any sense to people who know about runes and stuff i just chose them because i liked the meanings and designs)
Top to bottom.
Algiz: A protecting shield
Uruz: Strength, speed, energy and freedom.
Laguz: Water and healing energy.
Deer antler (shed)
Dremel (or other rotary tool) (sanding, drill and engraving attachments)
Step 1: Prepping Materials
I started off by cutting my antler and oak pieces into small strips of the size i wanted for my talisman. Then i used the rotary tool with a sanding attachment to smooth over and thin out the two pieces.
Finally i drew on the designs i wanted ready for engraving.
Step 2: Engraving
I next clamped the antler strongly in the vice and fitted the narrowest engraving bit to the rotary tool. With gentle strokes i worked away at the areas until the grooves were several mm deep.
I then swapped to a wider engraving bit to smooth out some of the top edges or the runes.
The final part of this step was to drill a small hole in the top of the strip.
Step 3: Smoothing
Using a selection of files i smoother off the outer edges of the piece and to remove some rough bits from the edges of the carving. Next i used a piece of P240 sanding sponge to smooth off and polish the piece.
Step 4: Filler
I was thinking of various ways for making the engravings stand out against the pale antler. One idea was to use paint but i wanted the surface of the engraving to be flush with that of the antler, so i needed something to fill the gap. I decided to use black boot polish (seen as it was the only thing i had to hand) I rubbed the polish into the cracks and wiped away any excess that was on the surface.
I had thought about other materials that i could use, the only other thing i could come up with was some kind of clay. If anybody has any other ideas or any tips i'd be grateful.
Step 5: Finishing Touches
To finish off the oak piece by rubbing it down with linseed oil and drilled holes in the top of each part.
I then cut a strip of leather to go through the holes and bind them together.
Not really sure what im going to do with it yet, though it would make a nice pendant.
I also engraved some on a piece of antler that lives on my keychain.
Again if anyone has any ideas about filling the engravings, that would work better than boot polish, please let me know.
Step 6: *Update*
After a number of suggestions of using wax ive been having a mess about. Wax crayons where by far the easiest to come by, and also give a rang of colors which is nice.
Initially i started by just rubbing the wax into the engravings. This worked fine for shallow ones but not so good for the deeper ones.7
Next i started melting the tip of the crayon over a lighter and dripping the wax onto the carving. Worked really well as the wax flowed into all the markings. Any excess wax was easy enough to scrape off with a knife.
I started to have a little bit of a play around with using different colors, quite pleased with some of the results.