Edwin Turner

The finger plate shown in the accompanying illustrations are designed with the object of forming graduated studies for the beginner in repousse metal work. In Fig. 1 is shown a Celtic strapwork design, which can be executed almost entirely with a tracing tool from the front. The ornament in Fig. 2 is raised from the back, and no tracing is required on the front; therefore the design should be drawn on the reverse side. Fig. 3 is more elaborate in design, and in execution will require a combination of the methods adopted in the two other plates.

with the exception of the ground, which is pushed back with a grounding tool, the work is executed With a steel tracer. To obtain higher relief, the work should be traced a second time with a blunt tracer, tilting the tool in such a way as to force the metal towards the design, thereby causing it to stand out from the groundwork at a sharper and more clearly defined angle. Great care must be taken not to force the tracer through the metal.

The ground should now be levelled down, and al. tool marks carefully worked out, finishing it perfectly

Repousse Metal Finger Plates 13

Out for each plate a piece of metal 1 ft. by 3 1/2 in and scour with emery cloth and oil. This done, tran-fer the designs to the plates, noting that the design in Fig. 2 is to be drawn on the back. Point in with a soriber or tracing point and fix the plate on the pitch-' block. Fig. 1 is worked entirely from the front and, flat and smooth all over. The spaces between the strapwork, shaded with the dark vertical lines, are cut out and should now be worked with a sharp stee tracer; also cut out all round the plate with the same tool. Examine to see that all is correct, then remove from the pitch block. Trim all around the edges with a file and emery-cloth ; drill holes for screws; and finish with polish and lacquer.

For Fig. 2, fix on the pitch-block face downwards and commence raising at once. The small end of the mallet should be used at first in the center oval, the edges being afterwards sharpened with brass raising tools. A round brass tool will be found useful to do the other parts. In all cases it is best to use the largest tool that can comfortably be worked in the part to be raised. Remove the plate from the block, turn over and refix, after levelling the pitch-block and cleaning the pitch off the plate. The tool marks in the ground are done with a large raising tool; they should not be too even, but rather irregular. After the ground is finished satisfactorily, remove the plate from the block and thoroughly clean it; then drill the holes for the screws and polish and lacquer.

Fig. 3 will require very great care in all stages to insure a good effect. Fix the plate on the pitch-block in the usual way and wait until it is cool before commencing the work. Then trace all the lines of the flowers, stalks, leaves and borders of the plate, finishing the treatment of the front by tooling the ground all over with a pearl tool. Take the plate off the block and clean away all pitch that adheres to it; then refix face downwards and raise th design with suitable tools. The illustration will give a fairly correct idea of the parts to he raised, and the amount of relief to be given to each part. The tulips at the top, the leaves and the central figure between the lower leaves will stand out the most prominently, whilst the finer tendrils and buds will only be slightly raised, and will be almost obscured in the background. The border will also require raising. This done, the plate may be taken off the block, cleansed with turpentine and the holes drilled for screws.

If the metal gets bent and twisted in working, it may be straightened by laying it face downwards on the sandbag and beating it straight with the flat end of the mallet. The plate may be greatly improved by again fixing it on the pitch-block, after filling up level all the hollows at the back with the pitch composition, and working round the outline, as in Fig. 1, with a blunt tracer, taking care not to work the ground too low. At this stage any inequalities in the raising should be corrected, and any necessary improvements made. When this is done detach the plate and again clean with turpentine. After this, bring to a high polish with a suitable powder and finish with a coat of lacquer to preserve the polish.-" Work."