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I'm about to start digging out a flashy tomb for my fort's baron, and I want to engrave it wall-to-wall. I'd like to let only my best engraver do the work. I could lock him in easily enough, but I don't want to risk him starving if I forget about him and he runs out of food. Is there some way to keep the other engravers out while still allowing the good one to leave when he needs to?

Edit: screenshot attached.

enter image description here

Further plans involve a gold sarcophagus, gold and silver statues, and maybe some stupid magma tricks.

Edit: another screenshot

The tomb has been completed, and here's the payoff:

enter image description here

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Engraving trains incredibly fast. Just smoothing the depicted area should be enough to train 2 or 3 engravers clear to legendary+5, and no fort should need more than that many anyway. – Paul Z Nov 4 '11 at 0:26
Hmm. Good point. I'll probably get some pretty buff miners out of this too. And yeah, I don't think I need more than 1 legendary engraver, really. Just gets in the way of farming and being slaughtered by goblins. – andronikus Nov 4 '11 at 0:28
did hyou mine eet for kayohss? – Skizzlefrits Nov 14 '11 at 19:36
I... yes? I think so? – andronikus Nov 15 '11 at 2:43
up vote 13 down vote accepted

Simple Solution:

Use Dwarf Therapist to disable the engraving labor on everyone but your most skilled stonemason. Re-enable once everything is engraved. You can let everyone do the smoothing (there's no quality value on a smoothing job), and disable them when you're ready to engrave the whole thing.

Complex Solution:

Use Burrows to restrict your non-target Engravers into other parts of your fortress. Your master engraver will be the only dwarf able to reach the area, so the engraving job will call him. (In Dwarf Fortress, Jobs pick dwarf!)

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Oh for god's sake. OF COURSE Dwarf Therapist. DT is amazing, and I'm a little ashamed I didn't think of it. Thanks! – andronikus Nov 3 '11 at 5:31
@andronikus - I would still familiarize myself with the complex solution. While Dwarf Therapist is great, the simple solution prevents any engraving work elsewhere in the fortress, which may not be desirable. – dlras2 Nov 3 '11 at 20:04
I'm pretty decent with burrows, I just don't want to accidentally starve my (now Legendary) engraver if I get three sieges in a row, for example. – andronikus Nov 3 '11 at 21:42
@andronikus: You could define a burrow that contains the area you want to engrave and a food stockpile! – chandsie Nov 3 '11 at 23:37
@andronikus so burrow the other engravers away from the site. – Raven Dreamer Nov 3 '11 at 23:53

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