|Project by Nils||posted 06-21-2008 01:27 AM||1714 views||0 times favorited||8 comments|
Here are three pens I made as birthday presents earlier this year. First is a Lacewood American Classic fountain pen. I made a Lacewood slimline pen earlier this year and felt that the character of the Lacewood didn’t come through on such a small barrel. I’m much happier with this pen, since there’s so much more wood to see. Another experiment I did recently was to turn a slimline with a little bit of shaping. (You can see that one on the far right of the first picture on my previous project posting.) So that’s another thing I did with this pen – added a little “womanly” shaping to it. I think it came out nice, although I also want to try it with the lower barrel nipped in, instead of the upper barrel.
The other two pens are Kingwood Designer-style. I left the center band off of both of these. I’d been having bad luck with my center band sizing (I think my bushings are a little off, actually) and I just like the look of an all-wood pen anyway. You might notice an interesting feature on the second pen. I accidentally mounted the blanks in the wrong order on the mandrel, so the lower barrel – usually the longer piece – is the shorter piece. This meant I had to pay a little extra attention when inserting the pen mechanism, since it had to be inserted about 1/8” less than usual. But, as I reasoned, the pen as a whole remains the same length, so its operation is fine.
The pens are all finished with CA and BLO – I find that works extremely well and is very fast. First I sand to 400 or even 800 grit before finishing. Then, with the lathe spinning, I apply some BLO to a paper towel folded lengthwise to a strip about 1” wide, apply the BLO to one barrel, then drop a small amount of thin CA onto the barrel and polish it with the paper towel. I understand the cellulose in the paper towel acts as an accelerant for the CA – in any case it’s extremely quick, and it looks very good. Nothing further is required. In fact, if you do the same thing again, it often causes the finish to get less smooth, rather than smoother.
-- Nils Davis, Menlo Park, CA