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How to get a glass-like finish for pens?

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Forum topic by Sharryn posted 05-10-2016 01:29 AM 1061 views 0 times favorited 28 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Sharryn

15 posts in 1431 days


05-10-2016 01:29 AM

I’ve tried just about every finish that was suggested for using on pens. I made up OB Shine Juice and it looks like glass until you touch it. Then it becomes more like a satin finish. I even allowed it to dry for over 1/2 hour. I’ve tried Shellawax, just regular wax, but nothing keeps that beautiful shine.

I’ve not tried the CA because I don’t know which one to try since there are so many different brands and thicknesses.

Would someone point me in the right direction?

Thanks a bunch!

-Sharryn

-- -Sharryn


28 replies so far

View JADobson's profile

JADobson

682 posts in 1576 days


#1 posted 05-10-2016 02:15 AM

CA glue is your best bet. I use the medium viscosity glue and it seems fine. Sand your blank to 600 and then apply the glue with a blue shop rag. I usually put on 5 or 6 coats but I’ve heard of people going up to 12. Then use micro mesh pads to sand to 12000 and finally finish with a plastic polish.

-- James

View gwilki's profile

gwilki

121 posts in 938 days


#2 posted 05-10-2016 02:33 AM

CA does work very well and it holds up, too. I use thin, but medium works very well, too. Dipping in wipe on poly produces a long lasting, shin finish as well.

-- Grant Wilkinson, Ottawa ON

View Notw's profile

Notw

471 posts in 1218 days


#3 posted 05-10-2016 02:51 PM

I second what James said but I have had better results with the thin CA, I also clean my blank before I put the first coat of finish on with denatured alcohol just to make sure no oils from my hands get in the finish.

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Sharryn

15 posts in 1431 days


#4 posted 05-10-2016 03:50 PM

Thanks a bunch guys! CA it is then. Where can I find the larger bottles of CA glue? I’ve looked on PSI and they only have 2 oz. size. Is there any one brand that works better than others? I can’t wait to have a nice shine on my pens. Then it’s on to learn to turn bottle stoppers. Never in a million years would I have thought using a lathe would bring me so much joy and satisfaction. Thanks again everyone!

-- -Sharryn

View Bill7255's profile

Bill7255

354 posts in 1749 days


#5 posted 05-10-2016 07:11 PM

I do the same as Notw. I only use thin and usually 10-12 coats. You need the micro mesh. I would use a good grade CA such as Zap or BSI. there are other brands also that a are good and can be ordered from Amazon. PSI has their own label and not sure how good it is.

-- Bill R

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Notw

471 posts in 1218 days


#6 posted 05-10-2016 07:52 PM

2 oz of CA glue will last you a lot longer than you think, it is only a few drops for each coat, I can get a lot of pens done out of 1 bottle. The micro mesh is a must, CA will give you the gloss but going through all the micro mesh grits will smooth everything out and make it really shine. Not sure how close you are to the Woodcraft in Harrisburg but they should have the CA glue and the micro mesh pads there.

View putty's profile

putty

1009 posts in 1071 days


#7 posted 05-10-2016 08:03 PM

Hobby Lobby has CA glue in different viscosity’s also.

-- Putty

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Sharryn

15 posts in 1431 days


#8 posted 05-11-2016 12:41 AM



I do the same as Notw. I only use thin and usually 10-12 coats. You need the micro mesh. I would use a good grade CA such as Zap or BSI. there are other brands also that a are good and can be ordered from Amazon. PSI has their own label and not sure how good it is.

- Bill7255


I have two sets of micro mesh and used them on the wood pens, but then I saw where it was for the resin pens so I got some of those sandpaper strips in rolls and have been using them to 800. Do you mean to sand the wood or the CA with the micro mesh?

-- -Sharryn

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Bill7255

354 posts in 1749 days


#9 posted 05-12-2016 12:32 PM

I sand

I do the same as Notw. I only use thin and usually 10-12 coats. You need the micro mesh. I would use a good grade CA such as Zap or BSI. there are other brands also that a are good and can be ordered from Amazon. PSI has their own label and not sure how good it is.

- Bill7255

I have two sets of micro mesh and used them on the wood pens, but then I saw where it was for the resin pens so I got some of those sandpaper strips in rolls and have been using them to 800. Do you mean to sand the wood or the CA with the micro mesh?

- Sharryn

I sand the wood to 400 regular sand paper and clean with denatured alcohol. You could use micro mesh to sand the wood. I then remove the pen blanks so I can put paste wax on the bushings to help keep the CA from sticking to them. If I have old bushings I use them. I then put back on the lathe and start applying the CA using the blue shop paper towels. CA doesn’t stick to the blue ones as well. I cut them up into small strips. With the lathe at the lowest speed put a drop of thin CA on the pen/towel. I do use rubber gloves. I like to let air dry each coat 10-12, but after the final coat is dry I spray a little accelerator just to be sure. Then I sand the CA with the micro-mesh 1500 thru 12000. Then use Renaissance wax. This is the technique I use, others may do something different.

The micro mesh will last for years. I clean with my shop vac and have even washed them in the washing machine.
Edit: this is the micro mesh I use.
http://www.amazon.com/SANDING-SHEETS-INTRODUCTORY-Peachtree-Woodworking/dp/B000H6HIK2/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1463056520&sr=8-3&keywords=micro+mesh+polishing+kit
I have not used the pad type.

-- Bill R

View Nubsnstubs's profile

Nubsnstubs

826 posts in 1195 days


#10 posted 05-12-2016 05:44 PM

e pen/towel. I do use rubber gloves. I like to let ai

Finally, someone pointed out the most obvious suggestion. Another thing not mentioned yet is do not breath the fumes….... That crap will kill you if you breath too much of it. It almost got me about 2 years ago, and I still use it, but am very aware of staying out of the fumes, especially when the it cooks off….. Wispy trails of smoke coming off the piece is fumes looking for a victim. ............... Jerry (in Tucson)

-- Jerry (in Tucson)

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Sharryn

15 posts in 1431 days


#11 posted 05-12-2016 07:57 PM

This is the micro-mesh that I have: http://smile.amazon.com/Micro-Mesh-Assortment-Pack-18-Pieces/dp/B00HJC156U?ie=UTF8&psc=1&redirect=true&ref_=oh_aui_detailpage_o05_s00

So if I let dry for about 10 minutes between coats, I should be good? Then use the micro-mesh and wax. Sounds like a good method to me.

Thanks everyone!

-- -Sharryn

View Bill7255's profile

Bill7255

354 posts in 1749 days


#12 posted 05-12-2016 07:58 PM



e pen/towel. I do use rubber gloves. I like to let ai

Finally, someone pointed out the most obvious suggestion. Another thing not mentioned yet is do not breath the fumes….... That crap will kill you if you breath too much of it. It almost got me about 2 years ago, and I still use it, but am very aware of staying out of the fumes, especially when the it cooks off….. Wispy trails of smoke coming off the piece is fumes looking for a victim. ............... Jerry (in Tucson)

- Nubsnstubs

I should have also said I run my DC. I have a big gulp behind the lathe.

-- Bill R

View bigJohninvegas's profile

bigJohninvegas

213 posts in 927 days


#13 posted 05-12-2016 08:32 PM

Try craft supplies for the larger bottle of CA glue. https://www.woodturnerscatalog.com/p/15/6242/Insta-Bond-Thin-Premium-CA-Glue

-- John

View Notw's profile

Notw

471 posts in 1218 days


#14 posted 05-13-2016 07:11 PM



This is the micro-mesh that I have: http://smile.amazon.com/Micro-Mesh-Assortment-Pack-18-Pieces/dp/B00HJC156U?ie=UTF8&psc=1&redirect=true&ref_=oh_aui_detailpage_o05_s00

So if I let dry for about 10 minutes between coats, I should be good? Then use the micro-mesh and wax. Sounds like a good method to me.

Thanks everyone!

- Sharryn

Thats the same micomesh I use, I use it wet, just a light dip in water before running it across the pen. If you get a bottle of the accelerator to spray on between coats you only have to wait about 10 seconds between coats.

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Sharryn

15 posts in 1431 days


#15 posted 05-14-2016 08:24 PM


Thats the same micomesh I use, I use it wet, just a light dip in water before running it across the pen. If you get a bottle of the accelerator to spray on between coats you only have to wait about 10 seconds between coats.

- Notw

So how long should I wait without the accelerator? What kind should I buy with Zap CA?

-- -Sharryn

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