I'm not quite sure what the acceptable term for those things you attach to
the front of drawers. Norm clearly calls them 'draw pulls' and I've seen
that term in print. Probably, it's like the try-square/trisquare semantic
brouhaha we've had here for a bit. Anyhow, for over a week or so I've been
blathering on about the desk I'm building and am at the draw pull making
stage. I'm thinking about a sort of flower(dahlia) motif for a few of the
drawers.. I've cut the pull from a scrap computer case sheet metal and wound
the handle portion with some 14 gauge copper wire I got from a dumpster. I
brazed on some thin wall copper tubing on the back side and attached the
thing to my practice drawer. Also, I slathered on some braze on the wound
on wire. I need to incise the leaf veins, somehow. I tried outlining with
my flex-shaft and a fine bit, but you can see it sucks big. Next try is
some sort of repousse with a cold chisel, hammer and anvil. The picture
shows my prototype on my practice drawer.
You may want to try etching the design onto the metal. Radio Shack used to
sell the acid and the resist for etching copper boards. Don't know if it
will etch the steel but there are acids out there that will.
Nice handle by the way,
It does, but very poorly. Nitric acid or a nitric-hydrochloric solution
is more often used for steel (probably the main metal in that computer
case). If he really wants to etch it, electrochemical etching is an even
However, for the look he is creating, stamping or cold-forging is the way
Thanks for the compliments. I first cut the sheet metal from whatever I've
got with a saber saw(with metal cutting blade) and then do the fine work
with a jewelers saw using a 1/0 blade. Takes a little time but is very
therapeutic. It would be no problem cutting the veins with the jewelers saw
but I don't prefer that look. I'm going to cut out a few more today and try
the cold chisel and anvil. Oh, I have a RBI Hawk and I tried cutting sheet
metal with it early on but the process is too wild and crazy and I gave that
That's the way to go, although you might consider using a hardwood block
under it for the veining instead of the anvil. You can always go back to
the anvil to flatten if necessary when you have the relief you want.
I love the design, and your execution so far is excellent. You are an
You're very kind with your remarks. Thanks.
I plan to put a 'cushion' of thick leather between the metal and the anvil.
Also, I have one of those leather, lead shot filled pillows the sheet metal
formers use and will give it a try if the leather-on-anvil doesn't do what I
want.. I have used this metal forming equipment on some other projects of
varying worth. If you are interested see @ http://home.mchsi.com/~llhote /
Might try a center punch and dimple the texture. If you're
going to get into this thing look for a Foredom "reciprocating
handpiece". Comes with changeable tips and lets you control
both the throw and the impact strength. They have two stock
tips - one a flat round end and the other a hardened point. If
you can thread the end of a diamond wafer cutter you can do
some really interesting textures - the diamond on the end
of the wafer cutter is pyramid shaped. Depending on the
angle, you can do little squarish dimples. or if held at a
shallower angle and on one of the corners, nice shiny "Vs"
Either way, the resulting texture will be shiny.
If you want to "pop" the texture apply some lier of
sulfur - will turn most metals black or dark brown.
Buff the black off the high spots and leave the low spots
If you want a quick and dirty repose look use copper sheet
with copper wire under it and pound on an anvil with a
leather mallet. If you have a rolling mill it's really
quick to do.
If you go with chasing or repose (sp?) you might want
to get a chasing hammer - big round head and long thin
handle with a bulge at the end where you hold it. The
large round head means you can keep your eye on the
working end of the tool you're hitting and not have to
worry about missing the tool with the hammer. Great
Thanks Charlie for the suggestions. I got a bunch of punches and chisels at
a local pawn shop for just that purpose but haven't really got to experiment
on the sheet iron. I have the Foredom H and I'm not sure it will take the
reciprocating handpieces. Anyhow, I just need to get this project over and
done because it's due in less than 4 weeks.
I really like that look you describe.
I've got jugs of patina concoctions that I use for some of the copper stuff
I have one of those and chasing tools, pitch pot and etc. I worked with
the copper then got interested in something else then something else...
I'll get back around to copper stuff as soon as I finish up some of my
furniture rehab projects.
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