Wednesday, November 15, 2017

How to make a segmented pen on the lathe

I made this pen out of walnut and maple. I used a pen turning mandrel and a slim style pen kit.

First of all I prepared the pen blanks. I rip cut a walnut and a maple piece on the table saw. I used the jointer to flatten one edge of each board and glued them together. 

I then squared the stock on the jointer again.

Using a stop block and a cross cut sled on the table saw, I cut the piece in smaller blocks of wood. 

I then glued those blocks perpendicular to each other to create a pattern. To hold them straight during the glue up I used two pieces of wood and clamps.

On the jointer again I squared my blank once again. I then marked the sizes of the blanks and cross cut them to size on the table saw.

I used a center finder and an owl to mark the center of each blank. I then drilled a hole in each blank on the drill press.

I sanded the brass tubes of the pen kit. This provides better bonding surface for the glue. I glued the brass tubes in the blanks, using super glue.

I then mounted a barrel trimmer on my drill. This bit cleans the inside of the tubes from excess glue and trims the blank flush with the length of the tubes.

I then mounted the pen turning mandrel on my chuck. I added the blanks and the bushings on the mandrel and secured everything in place. 

I did most of the turning using a roughing gouge. I then used a parting tool to establish my stop marks. I also used a regular straight chisel as a scrapper for the finishing pass.

I sanded the piece starting from 100 to 1000 grit. At 500 grit I wet sanded with mineral oil. I also used micro-mesh soft touch pads to wet sand until 12000 grit.

I then assembled the pen. Most people use special clamps for this. I just hammered everything in place with a mallet. I used a small wood piece and a towel to prevent my pen from damaging while hammering everything in place.

My pen was now ready and I am really happy with the way it came out!

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