Author Topic: Wire Inlay  (Read 4290 times)

Offline Blacksmoke

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Wire Inlay
« on: November 12, 2023, 08:45:43 PM »
Just finished a "in shop" tutorial on doing wire inlay.  Here is a major tip: DO NOT use Sterling Silver for wire inlay in your projects!  Sterling Silver has 5-7% Copper in it and it was designed to be used for "coinage" to give the metal more durability in pockets.  The Copper in it will oxidize and go black very quickly and your wire will disappear into the wood because it has darkened to the point that it so hard to see. The photo is sample of my wire done 35 yrs. ago with "Fine Silver" still no darkening!  So I recommend to use only "Fine Silver" for your wire projects. 

« Last Edit: November 13, 2023, 07:04:17 AM by Blacksmoke »
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Offline Bob Gerard

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Re: Wire Inlay
« Reply #1 on: November 14, 2023, 03:28:14 PM »
Very nice work from 35 years ago- I can imagine how fine your current work must be!

Offline Blacksmoke

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Re: Wire Inlay
« Reply #2 on: November 15, 2023, 06:55:09 AM »
Hey Bob, From one artisan to another your scrim is excellent!  Here is some of my latest work.  The wire is only .005' thick! and the image is X 2.  My stab in tools were made from watch maker's screw drivers.  Have fun, Hugh


« Last Edit: November 15, 2023, 07:47:39 PM by rich pierce »
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Online Frozen Run

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Re: Wire Inlay
« Reply #3 on: November 15, 2023, 03:13:17 PM »
The round silver dots, are those made from silver pin stock cut down and driven into the wood? If so, how long do they need to be to stay anchored in there, and do you file a tiny barb in the tip to help lock them in the wood? Thank you.

Offline Bob Gerard

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Re: Wire Inlay
« Reply #4 on: November 15, 2023, 03:30:26 PM »
Blacksmoke- that inlay work is beautiful- the pistol is amazing! I dare say you are quite a Master at your art. Love it 😍

Offline Blacksmoke

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Re: Wire Inlay
« Reply #5 on: November 15, 2023, 06:46:17 PM »
Don, Thanks for asking about anchoring technics to hold silver wire in place. The method that I use to prepare the sides of the wire ribbon with the barbs to grip the wood fibers. If you create a burr on the bottom of the wire ribbon it will impede the final fit of the tapered ribbon from going to the bottom of the tapered groove in the wood.  Hope that makes sense? Hugh Toenjes.  PS.  Some years ago I wrote a series of articles for "Gunmaker" magazine on the subject. If you want a copy of those articles I could dig them out and send them to you for a small price to cover cost of printing and shipping.
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Online Frozen Run

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Re: Wire Inlay
« Reply #6 on: November 15, 2023, 07:01:35 PM »
PS.  Some years ago I wrote a series of articles for "Gunmaker" magazine on the subject. If you want a copy of those articles I could dig them out and send them to you for a small price to cover cost of printing and shipping.

Yes, please, that would be awesome! Thank you, sending pm.

Online Daryl

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Re: Wire Inlay
« Reply #7 on: November 15, 2023, 08:27:02 PM »
Mighty fine work on that pistol, Hugh.
Daryl

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Offline Blacksmoke

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Re: Wire Inlay
« Reply #8 on: December 07, 2023, 12:14:58 AM »
Hi Guys:  Copies of the ten articles which I wrote for "Gunmaker" magazine  about ten yrs. ago, are available through the "Services and Products for Sale. portion of the ALR.  Thank you , Hugh Toenjes
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Offline smart dog

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Re: Wire Inlay
« Reply #9 on: December 08, 2023, 03:53:52 AM »
Hi Daryl,
Our forum accommodates a lot of input from different folks.  I for one am someone who posts a lot and shares my hard won knowledge and skills.  Yet, at times I am criticized for tooting my own horn despite sharing that knowledge with no thought of reward.  Hugh has worked hard to develop his skills and he expects to be compensated for them.  What is the problem.  Some idolized notion that no one should take their skills seriously?  There is another person who posts on this site that frequently laments that folks don't learn on their own and value his hard won advice.  He can be hard and sarcastic about those trying to benefit from this site too easily, yet no one objects to his suggesting that knowledge should have a cost.  Dave Price sells books on carving and wire inlay.  Should he offer them for free? 
Our forum is the repository of information from folks as they see fit to contribute.  Be thankful that we attract a diverse population of highly skilled gun makers regardless of their requirements for compensation for their hard earned skills.

dave

"The main accomplishment of modern economics is to make astrology look good."

Online Mike Brooks

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Re: Wire Inlay
« Reply #10 on: December 08, 2023, 04:07:43 AM »
You never came across as a "horn tooter" to me. It's pretty obvious your goal is to teach. I admire your passion.
NEW WEBSITE! www.mikebrooksflintlocks.com
Say, any of you boys smithies? Or, if not smithies per se, were you otherwise trained in the metallurgic arts before straitened circumstances forced you into a life of aimless wanderin'?

Offline alhedrick

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Re: Wire Inlay
« Reply #11 on: December 10, 2023, 06:46:55 AM »
just checking to see  if you recived my check yet

Offline Blacksmoke

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Re: Wire Inlay
« Reply #12 on: December 10, 2023, 03:26:34 PM »
Al:  Please contact me  by sending a "PM"  (personal message) just click on my username ( Blacksmoke ) and you will see
'send PM" just click on that and you can send info and discussion to me without anybody else seeing it.  Anyway I have not received any $ from you as yet.  maybe it will come tomorrow.  If you send your name and address now I can get the envelop ready to send.   Thanks, Hugh Toenjes
« Last Edit: December 10, 2023, 08:14:59 PM by Blacksmoke »
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Offline Bob Gerard

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Re: Wire Inlay
« Reply #13 on: December 10, 2023, 04:36:00 PM »
Blacksmoke; do you have a webpage or website where you have pictures of your beautiful work? Your wire inlay is stunning and you have built some beautiful guns.
I know itís another task to develop those websites. Your work is art and, like I have expressed hopes to another artist here how a collection of works ( electronic or printed in a book!) would really showcase your work.
Well, maybe for when you have nothing to do 🤣

Offline Blacksmoke

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Re: Wire Inlay
« Reply #14 on: December 10, 2023, 07:55:49 PM »
Hey Bob;  I sure appreciate your comments!  The only web site that I have is associated with  the American Custom Gunmaker's Guild.  There are some more photos on there.  I learned a long time ago from the late John Bivins that first you become a gunmaker then you become a photographer!!??  My so called " Masterpiece" rifle I had professionally photographed at Minneapolis Art Museum.  $ 3,000 later I have a collection of data files on a CD. Some of those have been published in Gunmaker magazine, Muzzle Blasts, American Tradition and South Dakota Magazine.  However the ball does not stop there.  I am constantly at my bench and all manor of things are made there. Here is the very last project to leave the bench in July of this year.  I take my own photos now because professional photo are way too expensive for me to afford.
Anyway I will be showing some of my work at this coming DSC show in Dallas Jan. 11-14. Probably my last hoorah as I am 83 in April next.  I have tried to post my work on this site but there is always so much negative criticism that the thread always gets locked. Why I can't figure it??  Thanks again,  Hugh Toenjes


upload
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Online Mike Brooks

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Re: Wire Inlay
« Reply #15 on: December 10, 2023, 08:56:35 PM »
Is that your wire work on an old gun?
NEW WEBSITE! www.mikebrooksflintlocks.com
Say, any of you boys smithies? Or, if not smithies per se, were you otherwise trained in the metallurgic arts before straitened circumstances forced you into a life of aimless wanderin'?

Offline Blacksmoke

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Re: Wire Inlay
« Reply #16 on: December 11, 2023, 06:51:14 AM »
Mike;  This gun did not just receive my wire work but a full "body off" restoration!  Lock, Stock and Barrel.
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Offline Cody Tetachuk

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Re: Wire Inlay
« Reply #17 on: December 11, 2023, 05:53:13 PM »

Not speaking for Hugh but I suspect that he is well aware of what elements were typically used historically. However, not everyone wants to be an "Elvis impersonator", some people want to make their own music and the talented ones can make music every bit as good as or better than "Elvis" did, even if they stay within the "Elvis" genre. Might not tickle the ears of die hard Elvis fans but that does not detract from the enjoyment had by the more open minded. While "beauty is in the eye of the beholder", quality of workmanship is what it is. 
« Last Edit: December 12, 2023, 02:07:00 AM by Tim Crosby »

Offline Blacksmoke

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Re: Wire Inlay
« Reply #18 on: December 11, 2023, 06:44:36 PM »
Am I missing something here??  The work that I did on that gun was only replacing things that were already there in 1760!  I certainly did not add new configurations of anything!!  That fowler was a 'wall hanger" at best, but now it able to be used again. I know the critics will say: "should have been left alone" My reply is how would we ever know or appreciate the sound of a Stradivarius instrument had it not been for "restoration" of priceless antiques?  Every one of Stradivarius stringed instruments have been restored at one time or another and be people who know what they are doing-I might add!
Hugh Toenjes
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Offline smart dog

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Re: Wire Inlay
« Reply #19 on: December 11, 2023, 09:25:17 PM »
Hi,
Back to wire inlay.  Hugh uses fine silver and for good reason, it tarnishes much more slowly than sterling because it has little or no copper content.  However, there is a down side to fine silver of which folks should be aware.  You need to be careful when you file it flush with the wood.  If your file or stone is too coarse and you file across the wire, fine silver will shred and leave fuzzy edges.  You should try to file or stone along the ribbon to the extent possible.  If you are using sterling, don't file it completely flush with the wood.  Let it sit proud of the wood just enough so you can feel it when you rub your hand over the stock.  By doing that, you can polish the sterling bright again by using a very soft rag, I use an old cotton sock, charged with a very, very tiny amount of Simichrome polish. 

In the photos below I use sterling wire and fine silver inlays, and brass wire and mother of pearl, bone, and copper inlays to create color contrasts.  The first gun had not tarnished enough when the photos were taken to really see how the sterling wire has a more steel gray color and the fine silver inlays are gleaming white.  It becomes a very handsome effect over time.
   




On this gun I do the same thing but with brass wire and inlays.  The brass tarnishes quickly and the inlays have a contrasting radiance that is very attractive.





Finally, I mentioned fine silver wire can have fuzzy edges if you are not careful filing it.  Here is an example in which I intentionally did that to create a fuzzy flame effect to the silver wire coming from the comet.




dave

« Last Edit: December 11, 2023, 09:38:56 PM by smart dog »
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Online Mike Brooks

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Re: Wire Inlay
« Reply #20 on: December 11, 2023, 09:34:22 PM »
Smartdogs work is spot on here. Propper design and execution for the period with proper width of wire used. The decoration is "grounded", ie, not floating freely.
 I suppose this will all be locked down soon...as usual.
NEW WEBSITE! www.mikebrooksflintlocks.com
Say, any of you boys smithies? Or, if not smithies per se, were you otherwise trained in the metallurgic arts before straitened circumstances forced you into a life of aimless wanderin'?

Offline smart dog

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Re: Wire Inlay
« Reply #21 on: December 11, 2023, 10:13:45 PM »
Hi Mike,
Thanks for the compliment.  All I can say is thank God for Baroque and Rococo, art styles almost tailor made for flintlock firearms.  I think Hugh did not add new work to that fowler.  He and I discussed that gun last year and I believe he just replaced wire that was missing and restored the gun to good useable condition.  Hugh did quite a bit of spectacular restoration work for that particular owner, mostly involving British guns.  I had the pleasure of finishing the details on one of those jobs because Hugh had some health issues and needed some help.   

As Mike mentioned, the biggest challenge to wire inlay is the design.  Doing the inlay work is not that hard and it is easier than incised carving.  It lacks mass, which is why you see so much close packed wire on the English gun, to give it weight.  A few spindly strands of wire around a big object like a cheek piece or is a big blank space just gets lost .

dave
"The main accomplishment of modern economics is to make astrology look good."

Online Mike Brooks

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Re: Wire Inlay
« Reply #22 on: December 12, 2023, 01:34:16 AM »
Interesting. I have never seen anything like what's on that buttstock on an 18th century English gun before. It's incredibly unbalanced and sort of floats off into space. I certainly learned something new today.
 I wish somebody would repop one of the guns with the Chinese themed wire. I think they are in the Giffin and Bailes book. ....I may have my books confused, but if you ever see these Chinese themed guns the are quite interesting. If I was flush I'd have someone with tha ability do one for me.
NEW WEBSITE! www.mikebrooksflintlocks.com
Say, any of you boys smithies? Or, if not smithies per se, were you otherwise trained in the metallurgic arts before straitened circumstances forced you into a life of aimless wanderin'?

Offline smart dog

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Re: Wire Inlay
« Reply #23 on: December 12, 2023, 02:50:28 AM »
Hi Mike,
Yeah, that chinoiserie fashion was so peculiar and ill fitting.   Here is one by Bailes.   I am sure he did not do the wire work but he sure had a skilled tradesman on contract.



dave
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Offline Long Ears

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Re: Wire Inlay
« Reply #24 on: December 12, 2023, 04:28:43 AM »
Hugh, Dave and Mike, you have an incredible talent just to be able to see, develop and create the art displayed in this thread and many others on this forum. Any price you charge is well worth the money for those that can afford it. We all get to learn from what you share.
Thank you all.
Bob