Studded grips can get a little expensive. Just like my silverwork, there is a lot more to creating these designs than you might imagine. Brass studs are $5.25 each and Sterling silver studs are $9.25 each. It takes a lot of work to create the designs, prep the studs and set them in the grips with exacting precision. At the bottom of this page is an explanation of the process.
Eucalyptus Burl with brass studs and Mother of Pearl flush inlay. Right side.
Eucalyptus Burl with brass studs and custom made screw. Left side.
Ebony with Sterling silver studs and clipped point star flush inlay.
Ebony with copper and brass studs, alternating round and diamond.
Fancy Walnut with brass studs and Mother of Pearl flush inlay.
Ebony with Sterling silver studs and “flush inlay” stars.
Satin Wood with copper and brass studs, aternating round and diamond.
“Cross With Borders”. Walnut with brass studs and border lines.
“Crescent Moon”. Bolivian Rosewood with brass studs and border line.
Here is the proceedure for setting thirty-eight studs in the Eucalyptus Burl grips at the top of this page.
1. After the grips are made each half is traced onto paper and the design is worked up.
2. The scale drawing is scanned, sized in PhotoShop and e-mailed to the customer for approval.
3. The studs, (38), are selected from the box for their matching head size. Slightly larger heads go near the bottom of the grip.
4. Using a jewelers file, I file the underside of each head to remove the two burs left over from manufacturing.
5. Each stud head is polished to a mirror finish by hand to remove the small machine marks.
6. They are then cut to a precise and different length depending on where they will be in the grip. Once cut, I have to keep track of their location, 38 of them.
7. The design is transfered to the finished grips. The layout lines are extremely precise.
8. Drilling the holes is the most complex and tedious of the procedures. Each hole has to be drilled perpendicular to the surface for the stud to sit perfectly flat. I have custom made carbide bits that don’t wander when they touch the wood. I have three custom made, miniature drill press fixtures that hold the grips at precise angles so each hole is perfect. Every hole (38) is on a different angle and depth.
9. The studs are placed in the holes using tweezers and their sizes are checked one more time for proper balance.
10. One at a time I remove them with tweezers. Apply glue with a horse hair to the hole and replace them.
11. Fifteen minutes later I look over each grip to make final adjustments if needed.
12. Custom, solid brass grip screw was made for the left side.
There were 4.75 hours in designing and executing the stud work on the Eucalyptus Burl grips on this page. The grips took 6.5 hours to make. The Mother of Pearl flush inlay took an additional 2 hours. 13.25 hours total – Piece of cake.