signing projects with ?????

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Forum topic by Scott Gilroy posted 1307 days ago 2387 views 0 times favorited 23 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Scott Gilroy

45 posts in 1635 days

1307 days ago

Topic tags/keywords: signature rotary carving tool

I would like to sign and date my projects, but want it to last. Not sure of the longevity of the “sharpie” approach and not even sure if I like the look. What would be a possible tool that I could use to engrave(?) my name, like a router, but with much more detailed control for something like writing. Something that can be held more like a pen for an authentic signature. Do any of the rotary-type tools out there do a nice job with a task like this? I know the speed has to be high for a quality cut.
Thanks for the help.

-- Scott

23 replies so far

View papadan's profile


1138 posts in 2001 days

#1 posted 1307 days ago

if you have an air compressor you can get a small pencil type die grinder that uses 1/8th bits. Can be held and written with easily. I bought mine at HF.

-- Carpenter assembles with hands, Designer builds with brains, Artist creates with heart!

View ajbergren's profile


20 posts in 1313 days

#2 posted 1307 days ago

I use letter/number punches purchased from Lee Valley. Works wonderfully!,43456,43461

View Manitario's profile


2303 posts in 1516 days

#3 posted 1307 days ago

burn the wood with a branding iron with your name and date, like what Lee Valley sells:,41115

-- Sometimes the creative process requires foul language. -- Charles Neil

View Scott Gilroy's profile

Scott Gilroy

45 posts in 1635 days

#4 posted 1307 days ago

papadan, does it produce a nice smooth line or is it sort of “rippled”? What is HF? (or did you miss the “D” by a letter? Thanks, it sounds promising.

ajbergren and Manitario, Thanks for the quick responses. I love LeeValley, great products. The puches and irons are cool, but I’m looking to add my actual signature and possibly other things. I really need the flexibility of a “writing”-type tool. thanks.

-- Scott

View Raftermonkey's profile


560 posts in 1545 days

#5 posted 1307 days ago

I use a wood burner, not sure of the real name of it, pyrography or something tool to sign my name. As far as dating the piece I’ll either use said tool above or I have inlayed a nice shiny new quarter showing the year. For this I use a 3/4” forstner bit in a cordless drill and CA glue. I barrowed the quarter idea from a fellow LJ.


-- -Zeke- "I hate to rush off, but I gotta go see a man about a log"

View HorizontalMike's profile


6925 posts in 1547 days

#6 posted 1307 days ago

When I taught school we used to use the stamps to mark equipment (mostly metal such as computers printers etc.) however, I think the combination of branding iron for Name/Shop and the stamped numbers for date would be the best overall answer on WW projects. That way you would not have be replacing the branding iron every month/year as time marches on. My 2-cents…

-- HorizontalMike -- "Woodpeckers understand..."

View JuniorJoiner's profile


445 posts in 2073 days

#7 posted 1307 days ago

I take the time to carve in my initials, usually very small. I also have a burn in stamp with my logo, but I only use it when I make multiples of a piece, never on a one off.

-- Junior -Quality is never an accident-it is the reward for the effort involved.

View upperwoodsman's profile


40 posts in 1978 days

#8 posted 1307 days ago

I use a Dremel tool with the flex shaft and caver bits works great

-- Scott JoBurg MI The More you know the less mistakes...........

View riverb's profile


45 posts in 1307 days

#9 posted 1307 days ago

one of those burning tools would be awesome

View Chriskmb5150's profile


253 posts in 1709 days

#10 posted 1307 days ago

I have some sheet copper that i use for work (Hvac/sheetmetal). I make small (around 3”x2” oval) plates out of it and use an engraving tool to write my name and date on them.

-- Woodworkers theory of relativity - the quality of your scrap is relative to your skill level

View William's profile


8977 posts in 1475 days

#11 posted 1307 days ago
Its made for branding steaks on the grill. You can interchange the letters and numbers to spell whatever you want. I don’t have one (yet), but I don’t see why I couldn’t heat it on my coleman stove and brand wood with it. It may take some practice on scrap wood to learn the proper heating time to make a clear brand on wood.


View dbhost's profile


5378 posts in 1865 days

#12 posted 1307 days ago

I’ve got a branding iron I designed and had made, simply screws on to a woodburning iron for a heat source. I brand it, then date it with the woodburning kit fine tip…

-- My workshop blog can be found at

View devann's profile


1735 posts in 1325 days

#13 posted 1306 days ago

I made my on branding iron with my logo. Should have spent the money and paid to have it made. I spent $80 on dremel diamond bits and nearly two days to make it. You can cover my logo with a quarter, that’s how small it is. A nice piece of furniture I carve the date, arts & craft stuff I use a sharpie. I also like to put MADE IN USA and I include my zipcode.

-- Darrell, making more sawdust than I know what to do with

View hObOmOnk's profile


1381 posts in 2760 days

#14 posted 1306 days ago

View Scott Bryan's profile

Scott Bryan

27251 posts in 2455 days

#15 posted 1306 days ago

Scott, in answer to your question to Papadan, he did mean to key in HF. HF stands for Harbor Freight. This is a store that is known for its low cost tools.

-- Challenges are what make life interesting; overcoming them is what makes life meaningful- Joshua Marine

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