Pen Making 101

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Project by PanamaJack posted 12-10-2009 04:41 PM 3198 views 1 time favorited 7 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Well it’s been a really, really time since I have been here. I have been busy. (Mostly in trying to keep my retail job) Anyway I am in to pen and bottle top making now. Since the turning of my first ever pen at the Indianapolis Woodworking Show in late January I have now passed the 200 count on turning pens and bottle toppers. Yes most I have sold most and/or I have donated a few. Most of my time has been the procuring of woods, acrylics and Corian (Countertops) and other types of solid surface materials from everywhere. Then I have been processing or cutting down into small pieces. All that is needed for a pen is about 5/8” square and 5-1/4” long. That would be for a larger or thicker pen.

After refurbishing an older model of a JWL12-36 lathe (Jet Brand). After watching several woodturning DVD’s I started out turning. Yes, self taught all the way.

Now I shall try and tell all what goes with these pens shown:
Picture number 1 is a group of pens. You can see an acrylic pen with a white cross. The one on top is of Walnut and Cherry woods. (The little white stripe between the wood you ask? Well, it is a part of a used Sears Gift Card) You can also see a pen that is of plywood, the blank came to me in that color(s).

Picture number 2 is of a 300Mag Shell and Leopardwood.

Picture number 3 is another group shot. showing different sizes and styles of pens.

Picture number 4 is of a Breast Health pen that I make. My wife works at the local hospital in the Breast Health Center there. I make a lot of these pens for her and the department….I have sold about 40 of these pens so far. Hopefully these pictures are clear enough to show some details. The wood is Pink Ivory, a fairly rare wood spieces.

Picture number 5 is of a couple of pens I made from scraps of Corian for a friend who had a top made from this. He gave me the sink cut-out and I gave him two pens , one for him and one for his wife.

All questions coments are most welcome.

-- Carpe Lignum; Tornare Lignum (Seize the wood, to Turn the wood)

7 comments so far

View paulcoyne's profile


133 posts in 3572 days

#1 posted 12-10-2009 06:08 PM

great selection of pens and glad to here its going so well for you i am patiently waiting on my first pen kits and mandrel to arrive

-- thats not a mistake... i ment that

View PanamaJack's profile


4483 posts in 4529 days

#2 posted 12-10-2009 07:04 PM

Better watch out…It is habit forming!

-- Carpe Lignum; Tornare Lignum (Seize the wood, to Turn the wood)

View RickL's profile


253 posts in 4392 days

#3 posted 12-11-2009 03:03 AM

Nice looking work, I think you have progressed well beyond 101 :) Good job.

-- Rick, Union,KY

View Dan'um Style's profile

Dan'um Style

14181 posts in 4434 days

#4 posted 12-12-2009 01:36 AM

very nice work ! happy to see photos of your new-found-passion

-- keeping myself entertained ... Humor and fun lubricate the brain

View a1Jim's profile


117689 posts in 4028 days

#5 posted 12-12-2009 01:40 AM

A great group of pen well done.

View Aubster's profile


132 posts in 4480 days

#6 posted 12-12-2009 04:48 PM

Nice work. I love the 300 mag pen, I have never seen one like that. Nice to see you back also.

-- A man who moves mountains starts one stone at a time.

View mrjello's profile


28 posts in 3513 days

#7 posted 01-12-2010 08:44 PM

I’m just getting started in this whole woodworking thing. I’m anticipating buying a lathe to learn how to turn pens. I really like your design here. Any tips for a newbie?

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