John Weyerts — Master Engraver
“ Well– I started engraving when I was 40 years old. That was about 40 years ago. ”
John Weyerts is a master engraver working out of his studio in Alpine, Texas. Though he rarely gets to work on projects of his own these days- being a renowned engraver may have its downsides- he had on the table two beautifully handled and partially engraved single action colts that he has been working on for a number of years. Also on the table was evidence of the great lengths to which the patterns are considered, planned out, and experimented on, before finally being applied to metal.
“I’m hoping that this last one won’t take but one year. I’ve got to get this one done. I get going on the darn thing, and I swear if I don’t spend three hours on one little leaf and stuff like that… In other words I am doing the same thing here that I did on the last one, and I told my wife I wasn’t going to do that any more. I always say, I’m gunna make this one a little simpler — but I don’t ever do it. “
John was a school teacher long before he ever began engraving, and for a number of years, he combined those two passions to run engraving classes in Alpine. Though he has since stopped teaching, he is determined to share his knowledge and experience in other ways.
“ I am currently writing a book, well I think I am going to make two books out of this instead of just one. So I’ve got stuff laid out over here, and over there, and under the bed, and everywhere else. but I think it is going to be quite nice whenever I get it done. I think I am going to make the first one an instructional book for beginners and maybe a little past. And the other is going to be a pattern book, because people don’t even know what they are looking at, just like you guys. I probably have 600 hours in this. And I just finished a colt single action that I spent four years on, but I have to qualify that.. some days I didn’t work. ”