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finkdaddy
09-09-2013, 11:50 AM
I've been asked to do a bit of bone inlay on a fretboard and I'd like to try a little scrimshaw to add some detail.
I'm confident I can do it, but I was wondering if the porous nature of bone will cause any problems.

Should the bone be sealed with something first before I add ink to the piece?
Also, what is the prefered type of ink to use?
I've seen everything from India ink, to crayons, to Sharpie marker!

I'm just worried about doing my scribing nicely, only to have it turn into a big black blob when I add the ink.

Thanks!

~Fred

Wicked
09-09-2013, 12:01 PM
Chuck Moore is the scrimshander here. Hopefully he will see this....

Moore Bettah Ukuleles
09-09-2013, 01:01 PM
Bone is hard to scrimshaw cleanly because the color can't tell the difference between a pore and an etched line. Some bone is more porous than others. If available I would soak the bone in Smith's CPES (penetrating epoxy) for a few minutes and let it dry for a couple of days. You could probably use thin CA glue but any of these fillers are likely to stain somewhat. I use fossil ivories, Walrus, mastodon, wooly mammoth--stuff that's been dead for tens of thousands of years. It's pore free. But I've seen plenty of people scrim on bone and it looks good. Just choose your bone carefully.
I use artist oils to fill in the etching. Get a good one who's pigment is very finally ground. I crayon would work, basically what Grit Laskin sells. Many things will work; the original scrimshander, the whalers, use lamp black, the soot from the inside of oil lamp chimneys. But don't use a sharpie! Here's a couple of older pieces I did.

jcalkin
09-09-2013, 01:18 PM
Jesus, Chuck, those are something else!

Moore Bettah Ukuleles
09-09-2013, 01:23 PM
Jesus, Chuck, those are something else!

Thanks John. UU has rules against me showing some of my better ones. :)

Chris_H
09-09-2013, 01:30 PM
WOW!! that is amazing

Steveperrywriter
09-09-2013, 01:45 PM
Thanks John. UU has rules against me showing some of my better ones. :)

I expect I know why ... Got a link we can use? I have a couple pieces by Bob Hergert, who does micro-scrimshaw, and he specializes in what you are probably talking about ...

Steve

Moore Bettah Ukuleles
09-09-2013, 01:51 PM
I expect I know why ... Got a link we can use? I have a couple pieces by Bob Hergert, who does micro-scrimshaw, and he specializes in what you are probably talking about ...

Steve

No, back in the day when I was an active scrimshander my forte was Polynesian people. Mostly women and mostly is some state of undress. ;)

Wicked
09-09-2013, 02:34 PM
Chuck, the female figure on that art nouveau uke that you did a couple years back was stunning. Actually that entire instrument was incredibly striking.

Beau Hannam Ukuleles
09-09-2013, 02:39 PM
Chuck, those are stunning!
How many hours would something like that take you???

Moore Bettah Ukuleles
09-09-2013, 02:48 PM
Chuck, those are stunning!
How many hours would something like that take you???

The larger ones probably took 100 to 120 hours. I can't do this work all day long so it's several hours a day over the course of a month. All done with a #11 Exacto blade. It's tedious work, hard on the body and the eyes. Although I prefer monochromatic work I've also done some color scrim.
All in all I enjoy building ukes MUCH more. It's nice when I can combine the too skills. (I have two special ones in the works now.)

Gyozu
09-09-2013, 03:05 PM
Thanks for posting those images. To say they are exquisitely done would be to sell them short. Finest I've seen.

sukie
09-09-2013, 03:24 PM
**sigh**

Imagine what Chuck could do with flamingoes.....

Tigeralum2001
09-09-2013, 03:48 PM
Amazing.... simply amazing! One person shouldn't be allowed to have that much talent; guess that explains where mine went! ;)

Steveperrywriter
09-09-2013, 08:27 PM
That is really impressive, Chuck. I took a stab at scrimshaw a while back and realized I did not have the eye, nor the skill. I appreciate your art and craft because I know how hard it is ...

Steve

58554

finkdaddy
09-10-2013, 01:22 AM
Thank you, Chuck, for the amazing reply. That's all very helpful!

I can't even believe the amount of talent and patients you have. I know it must be difficult to see something like that through from begining to end.
I know that when I attempt something detailed I get frustrated in the begining because it doesn't look like anything right away.
But now that I've seen some of your pieces, I'm more discouraged than ever! LOL!

Just kidding. I think I'll be adding a whale's tail coming out of the water and I just wanted to add a little shading where the end of the tail would cause a shadow on the rest of it. I can picture it in my head, but I'm sure I'll be frustrated enough by the time I'm done.

Mandarb
09-10-2013, 02:44 AM
Chuck,

I have always wanted to see some of your scrimshaw work. Thanks for sharing! Very beautiful!

PhilUSAFRet
09-11-2013, 01:40 AM
Amazing.... simply amazing! One person shouldn't be allowed to have that much talent; guess that explains where mine went! ;)


:agree: So that's where mine went too! Best I've seen, and I've seen some nice stuff while stationed in England and at a few gun and knife shows I've attended.