Engraving bit personal choice

Ok, what is your favorite size bit for fine detail engraving? Personal thoughts and opinions! Durability, detail, and overal performance… 1 2 3 and GO!!!

A long time ago I purchased the inventables bit package with my machine. Since then I’ve mostly used 3rd party bits, but I did find a fine graving bit inventables made and gave it a shot. Honestly it works pretty well, I’ve been using it for aluminum and brass for a few years and it’s still going pretty well. I have switched to a 1/4" shank engraving bit to reduce run out and deflection, but that bit itself works pretty well.

After 100’s of coins, I have JUST recently switched to 90 degree half round engraving cutters with a .005 (or .1mm) tip. The shallower angle and the half round makes the bits last a lot longer. I need really clean bottoms - and while an engraver will still engrave for quite a while, you will notice your flat bottoms get a little wonky after a while.

These are WAY more expensive than my cheap Amazon bits but the difference is worth it, and I can get several $150 coins out of one bit: https://bitsbits.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=4_44&products_id=416

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Do you have any pictures of work engraved with this bit? My engraving is usually 7075 aluminum, which is the hardest of all the common alloys. My issue is deflection from 1/8" bits. I’m considering upgrading to an Onsrud 30* 1/4 shank engraver with a .0125mm tip. They’re expensive (about $30), but my primary concern is how long is that thing going to stay sharp with that kind of point?

You should be able to jam the entire bit into your collet and leave minimal stickout. Here are some photos:

(gold plated brass after engraving)

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Also, the more shank you have (like half round and 3/4 round) and the shallower the angle - 90 degree or 80 degree instead of 60 and 40, the stronger and more durable your bit will be in the long run.

Ah, okay the type of engraving you’re doing is completely different from what I’m doing. Now I see why you want clean pockets, because you’re doing a mostly subtractive toolpath, you achieve accuracy on what you don’t remove, instead of what you do. I’m doing AR receivers which have legal requirements for depth, if I use a 90* bit I would be limited in the size text I could do because of that.

Silly question… (maybe?) did you do those coins on an X Carve?

No, these were done on a Tormach 440. But, they could have been done on my x-carve - I used to do them on the x-carve. Now x-carve is dedicated to wood, and tormach is dedicated to metal.

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For reference, what is the diameter of these?

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1.75" x .2"

They look amazing :+1: