How to Use Hand Engraving Tools

Updated February 21, 2017

Hand engraving tools allow you to make precision cuts in wood, glass, steel and precious metals. You can carve, etch or engrave with most engraving tools. Hand engraving tools are usually high speed and air powered. The small tip of a hand engraving tool allows you to create professional quality artwork. With little vibration, you can carve precision work for hours with no hand fatigue.

Make sure you have a sharp diamond tip in the hand engraving tool. Adjust the speed to engrave properly on the material. Aluminium is soft and does not require as much power as engraving on solid steel.

Use a fine-tipped pencil to transfer a pattern onto the material.

Hold the engraving tool as you would a pencil. Keep your fingers away from the tip.

Trace the pattern with the engraving tool.


There are different-sized diamond or carbide-burr tips you can use, depending on the size of your project.


Wear gloves to protect your hands from the sharp tip while engraving.

Things You'll Need

  • Engraving tool
  • Diamond burr
  • Fine-tipped pencil
  • Pattern
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About the Author

Lacy Enderson is an Addictions and Recovery Counselor. She is Certified with the American Association of Christian Therapists and holds a Master's Degree in Biblical Counseling. She is currently enrolled in Liberty University's Master of Divinity Degree program with Chaplaincy. Lacy is a graduate of Rhema Correspondent Bible School and has completed the first section of Berean School of the Bible. Lacy is the author of, "Addiction: A Personal Story" and "So You Want to Lose Weight But You Can't Stop Eating." Her newest novel is a teenage Christian fiction titled, "Honey Sweetheart."