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Evil, Wicked, Mean, Nasty
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm working on some new tombstones this year. My methods aren't much different than most. But I'm trying to decide how I'm going to deal with lettering. Sometimes I darken in recessed letters before graying the stone...other times I've simply painted the whole stone and let the shadows do the work. (Normally before painting, I spray them with wall texturing.)

I've never tried darkening recesses and then airbrushing the whole thing instead of hand painting. I might give it a try with this one. Does anyone air brush their stones?





 

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First off, that's a really great looking stone! Nice job on the detail. Are you using a Dremel for the carving?

On the few that I've made, I darken the cracks/recessed areas first, then go over them with a lighter color. I use the light gray Dry Lok which has a rough stone like texture anyway. I then dry brush other colors over the light gray or use a sponge method for highlights.

This is one I'm making now.



On this one, I routed out a square area and used the pre-cut wooden letters from A.C. Moore. I set the depth of the dremel to the thickness of the letters so as to make them seem like they were carved out of the stone. I'll paint the recessed area dark, and then highlight the letters so they stand out.

 

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Evil, Wicked, Mean, Nasty
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Yes, I use a dremel tool. I tried using a glue gun tip as others suggested - it didn't work well for me.
 

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Yes, I use a dremel tool. I tried using a glue gun tip as others suggested - it didn't work well for me.
Can I ask what size router bit you're using? Your letters are very crisp and look great.
 

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Evil, Wicked, Mean, Nasty
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks, but that's funny considering how badly my hands shake. I couldn't find the bits I would have used. Shown in this photo, I used the two bits on right.



The bit doesn't matter much. I create my words or image on a computer and then put it directly to the foam board....as shown.



I liked the Crane stone on Hector Turner's site. So I used his as the basis for the other stone in the photo. Mine isn't finished.
 

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Hey Darklore, thanks for the plug! Still six spots left if you want to hop on a plane. LOL!

Your Icabod Crane stone looks great and I really love your Enter at your own Risk stone. Fantastic detailing - you've got great control with the dremel. I could never get the dremel to work for me but seeing what you've accomplished I might have to give it another go.

I like your new tombstone jdubbya - great design. I really like the addition of the cross and raised lettering.
 

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Evil, Wicked, Mean, Nasty
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·

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I do not understand how you transfered the printer image to the foam? can you explain the process I am just not getting it. When I do my letters I print out the words then I attach the paper to the foam with a few tacks, I then with a tack I poke holes in the shape of the letters down the middle of the printed line. then I remove the paper and draw the letters with a sharpie marker following the hole pattern. I then dremel the sharpie lines with a v shaped router bit and the dremel router base. It works OK but I would not do a picture with it.
 

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Hey propman, I have done this make my giant tiki. He's really just a tombstone with a face. Blue foam, dremel, gray apint, wash, and dry brush.

First I drew it out. Then I had it blown up on a copier real big. 5 ft tall.
I taped it onto the blue foam, and then using a ball point and very heavy hand i pressed the design into the foam. Then I traced that.

you could also use some carbon paper or trace the back of the drawing heavily in grease pencil to make the transfer more obvious.

I used a dremel with a router bit, but i freehanded it, the router attachment was making it to hard to do the curves.

sketch:


final product:
 

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hpropman: I use the same woodburning tool that I use to carve the epitaphs to transfer the lettering to the foam. I do up the designs on the computer and then print it off on my printer - I'll tape several sheets together if I need to and then tape it to the foam so it doesn't shift. I then use the woodburner and trace around all the letters/designs but don't press to hard or you'll go right through the paper. If you've done it right (and maybe practice on a scrap bit first to get the hang of it) the heat from the woodburner will just slightly melt a line into the foam through the paper. You can then remove the paper and go over your lines with a marker if you need to before carving. Here's a pic...



One thing I found out was that it works better with inkjet printers than laser. The laser toner is designed to react to heat and tends to gum up and not trace as well. Hope this helps.
 

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Evil, Wicked, Mean, Nasty
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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
I do not understand how you transfered the printer image to the foam? can you explain the process I am just not getting it. When I do my letters I print out the words then I attach the paper to the foam with a few tacks, I then with a tack I poke holes in the shape of the letters down the middle of the printed line. then I remove the paper and draw the letters with a sharpie marker following the hole pattern. I then dremel the sharpie lines with a v shaped router bit and the dremel router base. It works OK but I would not do a picture with it.
I wondered when someone would ask that. It's quite simple...I cheat.

I have an artograph projector mounted above my desk. I print out the computer image and put the printout into the projector. The projector shines the image onto the foam board. If it isn't the correct size, I resize it on the computer...print it again...and put the new printout into the projector.

In the case of the "E N T E R" tombstone....It wouldn't fit on my desk where I could come close to lining up the image. So I went to the garage and stood the board against my lawn mower and sketched the image directly onto the board with a ball point pen.
 

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Evil, Wicked, Mean, Nasty
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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
The method DC mentions works well for transfering images to almost anything. You can use a crayon or even the edge of a #2 pencil to coat the back side of your printout for tracing.



I've never used the other method so I can't comment on that.
 

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Evil, Wicked, Mean, Nasty
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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Thanks for the kind words DC. At our last MnT, I brought a projector and offered to draw up stones. No takers.

I haven't done much on my stones, I've been working on other projects. Here's a progress shot. I'm still thickening the stone. Eventually I'll get around to putting the base under the stone.

I prefer Uruk's lettering. This stone is more of an entry sign so I'm keeping the letters black. At one point it had a bronze look I really liked, but it wasn't meant to look like metal so I changed it.



 
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