Frequently Asked Questions:
1. How big are your stamps?
All of my stamps are between 3" and 3.25" long (this variance is due to the fact that they are all hand cut and hand sanded to reach the final size. I do my best to make them as close to 3 inches long as possible. The face size of the stamp will depend on the design and is listed on the individual item's shop page.
2. What Size round copper blanks are you using to stamp on for your pictures?
The copper blank size I use depends on what size the stamp is. Typically, for the XS (1/4") and S (5/16") I'm using a 3/8" or 1/2" disc ; for the M (3/8") stamps I'm using a 1/2" disc ; and for the L (1/2") and XL (5/8") stamps I'm using a 3/4" disc. I am cutting out my own discs using a disc cutting punch set from my local craft store (Michaels), but any disc cutter should have comparable sizes.
3. Can you make me a custom logo or picture?
Yes! Send me an email and I'll be happy to discuss with you what you would like and to give you a quote. You can also reach out to me through Instagram. Prices will depend on how complicated the picture or logo is, how big the stamp needs to be, and how long it will take me to make it.
*PLEASE NOTE: Sometimes I have to close taking on new custom orders due to my workload. Please refer to my Instagram profile for whether custom orders are open or closed. Thanks!*
4. How can I get the best detail to show up when using your stamps?
Below are some tips and tricks for getting the best impression with your stamps:
a) Fold a piece of paper (I usually fold mine between 2 to 4 times) and place it under your metal. You can also use a piece of thin cardboard, card stock, or thin craft foam.
b) The surface you strike upon must be solid and must not bounce. Try stamping on a hard surface such as an old tree stump, a very sturdy table, or invest in a heavy metal block or an anvil.
c) Use the right hammer for the job. For small stamps (anything under 3/8") you can use a #1 hammer. For anything larger you will need more weight. I recommend using between a #2-#4 sledge hammer. I also would recommend using a brass head so as help your stamps last as long as possible.
d) Use the "tilt-and-tap" method. Start with holding the stamp straight and tap it firmly once. Without taking the stamp off the surface, tilt the stamp to the right/left and tap a second time. Next, tilt it towards you and tap it again, then tilt it in the fourth direction you have yet to tap in. (There are many great tutorials on YouTube showing how to use this technique if you google the tilt-and-tap method).
5. Your stamps have no bevel or angle on the design face. What's up with that?
Angled profiles on the face of stamps (or lack thereof) is due to the method in which the stamps are made. Many commercially available mass produced stamps are made using a CNC machine which creates the angled profile on the design face of the stamp when it is cut with the machining bit. Many of the stamps made by small businesses in smaller batches (or one at a time) use various different machining techniques which create a straight profile on the design face. If you are accustomed to using stamps with the beveled stamping face, it can take a bit of practice to adjust your stamping methods to get a good impression with your new handmade stamps. Like any new tool, it takes time to get comfortable and proficient using it, but once you do, you can create beautiful things!
6. How long will my stamps last?
After the stamps are carved, the stamps are hardened to around 59-60 on the Rockwell Hardness Scale and will last a long time when properly cared for.
7A. What sort of metals can my stamps be used on?
My stamps are designed to be used on softer metals such as silver, gold, copper, aluminum, pewter, brass, and bronze. They can also be used with Precious Metal Clay, Silver Art Clay, polymer clay and leather. I typically do not recommend they be used on stainless steel as they will dull or bend over time and will not hold up for long-term use, especially with any of the high detailed stamps or stamps with finer lines. If you choose to use these stamps for marking your knives and are stamping them hot, the stamps will loose their temper with multiple uses and will eventually have to be re-tempered to keep them in good working order.
7B. Can I use them on wood as a brand?
Yes, you can heat them with a torch and burn the designs into wood. However, once the stamps have been heated up, the metal will loose it's temper and will no longer be suitable for stamping on metal of any type.
8. Help! I have some stamps that have started to mushroom at the top. what do I do now?
Mushrooming on the hammer-end of handmade stamps is completely normal and is expected with long-term use. It is especially common if you are stamping on harder metals, or using a steel hammer head. You can use a belt grinder or hand files to file or sand off the "mushroom" to prevent it from cracking further and splintering off, also saving yourself from potentially getting injured in the process. I would also suggest switching to the use of a brass head hammer to prolong the life of your stamps.