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I want to Etch clear through Brass on a table-top Answered

I want to make some fake gears and such to decorate steam punk and sci-fi stuff. 

I'd like to take brass or copper and etch clear through, and have a "clean" edge.  Sharp I don't really want. I need to transfer an image from a computer-drawn source.  Heat transfer with toner I know, etching, well, not so much.   
I'd also like to do this on my kitchen table.



Best Answer 8 years ago

If you can figure a way to register (perfectly align) the image on both sides you'll have a much easier time etching all the way thru.  If you don't protect the back then the etchant will work on the back side where it's not supposed to.

You can register your drawing by drilling a pin in the center and then one on the outside.  Print both images with a dot for the outside pin.  Print your image mirrored.  Line up the images on the pins and heat.

Since I plan to use "thermal transfer" i.e. iron a xerox copy on to the metal, this should work. I can drill register holes in spots where there will be voids later.

Alternatively, see if you can find a junk-clock or two?


Almost all the junk clocks I can find are full of electronics, not gears. It's a good idea, but doesn't work well.

Old ones have pre-made brass gears, ditto watches.


Indeed. Old ones are very rare in this area, and I am loth to ruin a good clock for the parts.

Yes, I think most of them have been disposed of or steam-punked by now...