Engrave on a Football?!

Before you say it, I agree. This is a horrible idea. My rodeo boss won’t let up about it though so I’m trying to brainstorm here and think of any possible way to make him happy.

So rodeo boss wants to engrave a football for his son, the football coach. They won state this year. I told him the awkward size and shape of it (deflated) would probably not be conducive for what he was wanting, plus getting the clearance right would be a pain. I thought maybe we could engrave a leather piece and attach it instead, but he’s convinced we can figure it out.

What are your thoughts? I think we need to find an alternative, but I’m open to suggestions.

Are you sure about the material? If it’s a pvc football then it’s right out.

If it’s real leather then I bet you can make it work.


Perhaps deflated, remove the lacing and slide a small block inside of it to keep area you want to try to engrave the same height–and will definitely need to remove the crumb tray and do all the math to figure out the new zero point and material height. Or just partially deflated and tape the edges to keep it from moving (some curvature is OK for etching).

But agree with @evansd2, try this only if it’s real leather & don’t even try it if synthetic… I’ve been making a lot of trays and notebook covers with a football-like pebbled texture cowhide, and it etches really nicely.


With all the suggestions you are getting here you can probably accomplish an engrave of some sort. If rodeo boss can be persuaded, how about a beautifully constructed and engraved base for a football. He is going to need a base anyway and the options are so much better than making the football the material.