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Rotary tools for glass etching, anyone use it?

HelenHelen Posts: 1,787Member
edited May 2011 in General
I have admired the sandblasting air eraser art that folks have posted, but I don't think I want the "mess" involved. I have googled glass engraving/etching and think maybe this is what I want to use. Anyone have any experience with using a Dremel or other rotary engraver.
Hellie0h-Central Ohio Gallery # 9914
What Will YOU Do, With Your One And Only Life

Comments

  • pegbat_gmail.compegbat_gmail.com Posts: 451Member
    I have a high speed tool for engraving and it works with my compressor. I purchased it years ago but have not used it for a long time. You can get different kinds of blades or what ever they are called. I can use mine for carving out an empty egg shell, change the blade, carve on wood, or use a diamond blade and etch glass. I have no idea what it is called because I have not used it for so long. It is in my storage. I guess I should get it out and revisit it. It will do gourds also.
  • dek1dek1 Posts: 224Member
    It's been a couple of years since I've done any etching, but I do use a Dremel for glass etching and think it's great! I have the regular Dremel all-purpose tool, not the engraver, and love it. I found sets of the diamond tip bits in a variety of grits for different degrees/thicknesses of etching. It's like holding a pen and drawing except it's permanently cutting into the glass. My favorite thing to do was to etch with the cream or a sand blaster, then use the Dremel to add detail to the design. If you like to draw, I bet you'll really like it.
    In NC, cutting with an E, a Silhouette, and now a Gazelle, all thanks to my very amazing sister!
  • elsaelsa Posts: 296Member
    I've used mine a lot for etching and engraving. There are diamond tipped bits available for it. While they are not necessary, they last longer and pay for themselves over time.
  • pigtailpatpigtailpat Posts: 1,512Member
    Helen -

    Going the rotary way is not without problems also. I think you need a clamp or vise of some kind, so that the object being engraved can be held absolutely stationary, so that you have two hands free to really get a good grip on the rotary tool. Not everyone has access to those kind of work tables that have the clamps on them......
    Cuts with Gazelle, PNC with silhouette.
  • HelenHelen Posts: 1,787Member
    Thanks for the input folks. I think this is what I am going to go with. Pat (hope that is your name) I could probably rig something up for keeping the piece stationary. I like the idea that I can do this indoors. The detail that I seen on you tube of an artist, Lesley Pyke was amazing, which I would never ever begin to replicate. Amazon has a deal with a variable speed Dremel kit, and the diamond bits are reasonable priced. Not going to jump into making a decision as yet, need to think about stuff like, do I really need this, will I use it.

    I have a storage shed with large bins full of every cake pan you can imagine...in my wanna be a cake decorator phase, not to mention all the tools, and supplies that just lay dormant. I just don't want to cake anymore. I tend to get caught up in the "moment", if you know what I mean.
    Hellie0h-Central Ohio Gallery # 9914
    What Will YOU Do, With Your One And Only Life
  • dek1dek1 Posts: 224Member
    Helen, after posting earlier, I remembered that I forgot to tell you I used the flex shaft attachement on my Dremel--it's like a flexible tube with an end like a fat pencil that you can fit your bit into. (I couldn't draw too well using just the Dremel itself. It was kind of like trying to draw on your computer with the mouse!) That makes the etching much more "natural" feeling. I'd hang the Dremel tool on a hook and use the flex thing to draw with. I didn't need a clamp for the item I was etching. I usually folded a towel on my work table and put the item on that. I etched with one hand and held the glass piece with my other to keep it steady. You are going to have fun!!!
    In NC, cutting with an E, a Silhouette, and now a Gazelle, all thanks to my very amazing sister!
  • pigtailpatpigtailpat Posts: 1,512Member
    Dek -

    I would LOVE to see a video on this from you - because the air erase way has me very concerned about breathing in the stuff used (the sand). If there's a way to etch using a rotary tool and a way to do it without clamping, I would be really interested in seeing it.

    Pat
    Cuts with Gazelle, PNC with silhouette.
  • HelenHelen Posts: 1,787Member
    edited May 2011
    Dek, thanks for the tip on the flex shaft attachment. I just placed my order at Amazon, got the variable speed 300 Dremel tool kit, keyless chuck, flex shaft attachment, 20 pc diamond point bit set, 30 pc diamond burr set, and the 20 pc clean and polish kit. All for 118.00, free shipping. Anxious to give it a go, only wish there were more tutorials available.
    Pat, here is a very short you tube of using the flex shaft attachment.


    Pat all the videos I have watched show just having the glass on a towel or that spongy shelf liner that keeps things from moving. Here is a vid of students.
    Post edited by Helen on
    Hellie0h-Central Ohio Gallery # 9914
    What Will YOU Do, With Your One And Only Life
  • dek1dek1 Posts: 224Member
    Pat, I don't have a video. It's one of those things I just picked up on my own. My sister (elliott37) used to always warn me to wear a mask when doing it so I wouldn't breathe the glass dust. LOL! I tried to find something I'd done in the past so I could post a picture, but couldn't find anything in the house--I gave it all away. As far as using the sand, my dh made me a box out of plywood with a hole in front and one on the left side. I would hold the sandblaster in the front hole then, wearing a glove, I would hold the glass to be etched inside the box with the left hand, and I had a piece of acrylic, from Lowes, on top so I didn't breathe any of the sand or glass particles. Once everything settled I would take off the top and remove my glass. Then I could pour the sand back into its container for future use!

    Helen, that sounds like a great deal for all of that! The diamond tip bits will last forever!
    In NC, cutting with an E, a Silhouette, and now a Gazelle, all thanks to my very amazing sister!
  • pigtailpatpigtailpat Posts: 1,512Member
    Dek - Stef is your sister????????? Wow you guys must be the first sister-brother on .mtc that I know about.

    Stephanie - convince him to do a vid!! )):: Helen I'll review the vid's you posted to see if they help me.....

    Pat
    Cuts with Gazelle, PNC with silhouette.
  • dek1dek1 Posts: 224Member
    edited May 2011
    Oops! Sorry Pat--I'm her sister (not brother!) She's the amazing one who got me started with all this cutting stuff and turned me into an addict. She's also taught me A LOT about the Silhouette and got me started with MTC. Pretty cool, isn't she? (I'm Debbie, by the way!)
    Post edited by dek1 on
    In NC, cutting with an E, a Silhouette, and now a Gazelle, all thanks to my very amazing sister!
  • pigtailpatpigtailpat Posts: 1,512Member
    Debbie -

    So I'm the doofus again. I guess because the dremel in my mind is like a guy tool, I figured you were a guy.......ooooooooooooooppppppppppppsssssssssss............

    Sorrrrrrrrrrrrrryyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy.........

    Pat
    Cuts with Gazelle, PNC with silhouette.
  • dek1dek1 Posts: 224Member
    No problem! A "name" like dek1 doesn't make anything clear, does it??
    In NC, cutting with an E, a Silhouette, and now a Gazelle, all thanks to my very amazing sister!
  • debzdebz Posts: 3,310Member
    I'm surprised you don't have to use water with that. Usually when you engrave on glass, the tool gets very hot and the glass can break.

    I used to use a machine that could engrave on glass. It used a suction to hold the glass to it, and then you had to use water while the engraver was cutting. I remember breaking those stupid Princess House glasses so many times that I got to where I refused to engrave them. If they weren't perfectly cylindrical or had some kind of problem, the glass could break, or the engraver would goof it up.
    Deb
    http://krapikreate.wordpress.com/
    Cutting with 24" KNK Maxx, Silhouette SD, Expression, Cameo, and Zing
    Team KNK Designer
  • paupau04paupau04 Posts: 4,830Member
    Humm,I have the dremel tool and flex shaft, a self bought present years ago. I have the diamond bits (fyi, harbour freight has a nice set of tips that should work). I may have to put this on the list.
    Who's sorry now?...Hell hath no fury as a crafter scorned!!!

    http://sitstayscrap.blogspot.com/
This discussion has been closed.