|Project by Peter Oxley||posted 2050 days ago||2941 views||3 times favorited||11 comments|
The first couple of pens didn’t turn out so great. I was worried that the hole would be off-center and I would expose it if I made the pens too slender. As a result my pens were huge … like white-board marker huge! But with some practice I started getting some pens that were a size and shape that was suitable for human hands! I’ve made about 15 of these now, and most will be stocking stuffers. Most of the pens I’ve made have been soft maple, but the middle photo also includes pens made of hickory, birch, and purpleheart. The finish I’ve been using is shellac and wax.
I’m drilling my blanks on the drill press instead of on the lathe. I set up my table at 90° to the spindle, clamp a fence to the table, and feed the pen blank up into the drill bit. By doing this I’ve found that I can drill the entire hole with a long bit, instead of starting with a short bit and then switching. I’ve also found that by feeding the blank this way I can really feel the moment the bit loads up, so I can stop and clear the bit before it wanders too much.