Rotary Engraving Noses Part 3: The Different Types

There are several different types of noses for rotary engravers: 

  • Those with chip removal tubes — These noses are typically not interchangeable with the others. Older noses were made out of Teflon, but because of its cold forming problems, most manufacturers now use Delrin. 
  • Drop-in and screw-on noses — Metal noses from SST are also common for times when the spindle exerts low pressure and/or some ghosting is not objectionable. These will work on most spindle micrometers.
  • Noses without vacuum removal tubes — On some applications, using a nose with no vacuum collection can be utilized. Usually, I utilize these when a surface is mare-resistant, a protected layer is applied, or can be finished afterwards.
  • Noses with vacuum removal — A chip removal system connects to a nose assembly tube to remove chips during engraving.
  • Tapered noses — For small lettering on contoured material. Mold work would fit this requirement. The end of the nose can be a small as 1/16".
  • Bigfoot noses — These noses allow for engraving wide and/or multi-line text. The wider nose will not allow the depth change when larger areas are engraved.

—Fred Schwartz, Quality One Engravers

Look back on Part 1: Challenges and Part 2: Advantages or consider these pieces of advice for rotary engravers