Plastic Stippling--I may have gone crazy!

Discussion in 'DIY Projects' started by Gatekeeper, Jun 21, 2011.

  1. Gatekeeper

    Gatekeeper New Member

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    Back in the fall, I bought one of those electric wood-burning tools at Sears with the interchangeable tips, and followed some of the many tutorials I found on the net to try my hand at grip stippling
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    Just pick out a tip and let the tool heat up. Try out different tips on some scrap plastic(I used the feedlip covers that come on P-mags) to see what each shape tip does. Press the hot tip briefly into the plastic, you should see the plastic melt and "roll" up the wood-burning tip. Vary the length and depth of the holes to find the amount of texture you like. I found I liked the texture a rounded tip about 1/8" across left. If you want it a little more aggressive you can lift the tip out of the depression at a slight angle dragging the edge of the crater.
    Once I was kinda getting a feel for what I wanted, I started stippling the panels of p-mags themselves. it's really hard to screw up, but if you do you can re-stipple the same area again and fix it. If you really screw up and burn through the mag, well then you're only out about $12 or so.
    I stippled a border around the finger groves, then proceeded to fill in the area by placing adjacent craters until the area was filled.
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    I like the feel of it so much I stippled all my P-mags :p
    The P-mags are great practice, because they are the same type of plastic as the rest of the magpul furniture.

    Cont'd...
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 29, 2012
  2. Gatekeeper

    Gatekeeper New Member

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    Once you get a good feel for what texture you like working on the p-mags, just use the same technique on the furniture you want to stipple.
    Pick out what you want textured, and what you don't-- like where your finger/thumb moves to work the safety, or where the sensitive web of your hand rides up on the grip, etc.
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    Draw out a border with a black sharpie if you like then stipple the border the same way as you did the panels on the p-mags. Then fill in the bordered area. If its not agressive enough just drag the edge of the crater or go a little deeper. If its too aggressive, you can knock the edges down a little with some sandpaper....or grow some callouses [​IMG]
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  3. Gatekeeper

    Gatekeeper New Member

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    Did my AFG the same way as the p-mags/grip
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    You will probably notice where the molded grooves are in the AFG you need to hold the iron a little longer to displace the right amount of material. And go a little light where the center seam is so not to "weld" the two halves of the AFG together
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    Well that's about the best I can do. I'm obviously no writer and if I could ever stop buying components or guns maybe i could buy a decent camera. :p Sorry for the bad pics
    [​IMG]
    The grip surface is now super aggressive, and gives a rock solid grip with even the wettest or muddiest hands. I've been running it like this since sometime last fall and couldn't be happier!
    Anyway, I hope this helped.
     
  4. AusLach

    AusLach New Member

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    That's super cool Gate.

    I used to use one of those to finish off some of my leatherwork. Burning a thin line into a leather belt about 1/16" from the edge creates a really attractive finish, especially on brown belts. Could be used to border stitching etc on a holster too :cool:
     
  5. soldierman79

    soldierman79 New Member

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    Very nice! I'm gonna have to try this now. :cool:
     
  6. Davo45

    Davo45 New Member

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    I used a wood burner with several different tips to stipple both of my Gen 3 Glock grips. I had originally stippled only the center of the grips, but then decided to stipple them from the rear serrations to the front serrations as well as the bottom of the trigger guard. I also used my Dremel tool to remove some material from behind the trigger guard and from the upper rear end of the grip creating a higher grip on the pistols.
     

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  7. dnthmn2004

    dnthmn2004 New Member

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    Very cool Gate. Well done tutorial!
     
  8. Boyerracing343

    Boyerracing343 New Member Supporter

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  9. Olympus

    Olympus New Member

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    Looks great. Have you ever tried it on wood or does it just work for polymers?
     
  10. Gatekeeper

    Gatekeeper New Member

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    Stippling has been done on wood instead of checkering for hundreds of years.
    I read an article a while back they do wooden stocks by tapping a sharpened nail, or pointed chisel into the wood in a random fashion. That displaces and lifts the wood grain giving the texture, similar to how the burner lifts and displaces the plastic on the grips.

    I don't know how the wood burner would work for wood stippling, never tried it. It would be removing material instead of displacing it so i doubt it's effectiveness... but that's what checkering does so it may work.:confused:

    Not my work or photo, but an example of wood-stippling with a nail
     

    Attached Files:

  11. Gatekeeper

    Gatekeeper New Member

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    Nice work Davo! (I see we have the same camera:p)
    I think I'd still be nervous doing the grip on a pistol, looks like you done good!:cool:
     
  12. Olympus

    Olympus New Member

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    I think I'd like to give it a shot on a set of grips sometime when I have time. I know about stippling on wood, I just wondered about the effectiveness of the woodburning tool. A hammer and a nail would sure take a long time. I'd think it would almost take as long to just do the checkering.
     
  13. Gatekeeper

    Gatekeeper New Member

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    Sounds interesting. Try it out and let us know how it turns out!:cool:
     
  14. hiwall

    hiwall Well-Known Member

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    Stippling actually goes quite fast. I've done both wood and on metal.
     
  15. Swervin

    Swervin New Member

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    Some stippling creations
     

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  16. Swervin

    Swervin New Member

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  17. zhowi14

    zhowi14 New Member

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    I'd like to get into plastic stippling on AR foregrips, where is the best place to find a wood burning iron, preferably cheap?
     
  18. Olympus

    Olympus New Member

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    Hobby Lobby
     
  19. Swervin

    Swervin New Member

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    Please show me your finished project..... I have some ar grips I plan to stipple... Just want a more inventive, original style. Would like to see examples
     
  20. Swervin

    Swervin New Member

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    New work done on my glock. A re-stipple, didn't really like the first go around.

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