Another Crucifix

Posted: June 5, 2014 in Uncategorized
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Hi Guys!

The process was pretty much the same this time around. This one I made in the new charcoal forge I made and it worked out very well. I made the members of the cross out of flat, twisted them and then flattened them back out again. I counter sunk and chiseled the hole for the rivet, which was a 4mm bolt with the head rounded over, cold, and then cut and hammered into place cold. Overall length of the cross is about 24 CM and 16 wide. I used a piece of galvanized for the INRI banner on top. I have an abundance of small pcs with nothing to do.
I guess the real big difference here was that I actually took the time to make new chisels – I used re-bar like I have hundreds of times in the past, but here the re-bar appears to be to soft. This is the first time I have ever been disappointed by a re-bar tool. In this case it was all three chisels. I think they started to mushroom out before the hammer hit them. Hahaha. Oh well. I finished the body of Christ up with my other chisels and will be making all my new chisels out of the either leaf spring or some breaker bar I have, but that is some big stuff to reduce for smaller sized chisels like I need.

Crucifix Front

Crucifix Front

The process went something like this – 4cm x 5mm thick x about 30 cm long. Mark out and cut arms, legs, head. Shape head first, then spread and shape arms. Mark the beard line and chisel and lift a little. A little fullering under the beard line will make it stand out more. Use chisel and punch to put eyes, nose and mouth on face. On the head and chest cavity you want to round it up on a stake tool to give it a more natural appearance. Flat will work, but rounding it gives a little better look.
Eyes should be about in the center of the face, mouth 2/3 from top and the nose between. This is using standard drawing sizing. Ears which are not an issue here, should be from the corner of the mouth to the outside corner of the eyes. Bodies should be about 7.5 times the size of the head and average shoulders 2 times the head height. So a 2cm long head = a 15 cm long neck to foot plus 2 cm for head for a total of 17 cm with a shoulder width of about 4 CM. Arms width is equal to about the total height for the figure finger tip to finger tip. Just for reference if you ever need it.
Okay back to the body, after I get the arms about right, I figure out the rib lines and fuller the stomach to give it a drawn in look and to define the chest cavity. I am concerned where the stomach section ends as I want to define the loincloth by having it raised a little from it. I add some fold lines and define where the legs enter the loincloth again fullering them a little to define them away from the cloth. Finish fullering the center of the legs I like to fuller it beyond the front on the backside, at an angle, so it gives a little better perception of depth for the legs. Finish rounding over the legs, slight indent for the knees and ankles, flatten feet a little, etc. These elements can be refined as much as you desire to. I wasn’t trying to make an exact replica of a body, but give the impression of one. Now I pick the lowest visible rib and use a chisel to impart a spear wound. I am done.
I use nails that I have squared up the heads a little and put them through the drilled holes in the hands and feet. I do the same for INRI placard. I trim the nails to length and bend over pulling them tight. I guess like anything else there are better ways to do this, but it holds the body very firmly from what I have seen so far and it isn’t seen hanging on the wall anyway. On a larger scaled crucifix you might want to actually forge some square and larger headed nails.

Crucifix Back - nails look like they stick out but they don't.

Crucifix Back – nails look like they stick out but they don’t.


Well hope you enjoyed the write up anyway. You know how it is sometimes when you are working, you just keep working and forget to take photos. At least I do. I am lucky I remember to put my touchmark on most things. I wound up putting it on cold. Oh well. I will do better next time, I will do better next time, I will do better next time. Hey I didn’t drift off to Kansas. hahaha. Til next time!

See ya at the Forge!!



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