Pen No. 1 - Mango Atlas Pen

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Project by Jaybird719 posted 12-16-2010 08:03 AM 1744 views 0 times favorited 5 comments Add to Favorites Watch

After looking at several of the pens displayed here on the project pages, I decided to try my hand at them.
Man, am I glad that I did.
These are so much fun to do and they really don’t take long at all to crank out.
I prepped several blanks, and have had to restrain myself from standing at the lathe non-stop to crank them out.
I purchased several of Woodcraft’s Atlas pen kits in the chrome finish. I have always liked this style of pen – just hope that those folks on my Christmas gift list do, too!
This particular pen is mango wood.
It was a blank that was thrown into a box of bowl blanks that I purchased on Ebay from a guy in Hawaii.
The wood was a breeze to turn and had some nice color to it.
My wife and I were calling it the cheetah pen because the graining of the wood looks alot like the markings on a cheetah – not sure if it really shows up all that well in the photos.
May have turned it a bit too fat, but still pleased with it as my first go at pen making.

Thanks so much for looking… ...comments, critiques always welcome.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to crank about eight more of these out!

-- -Jay Hartman - Morrisville, PA

5 comments so far

View GMman's profile


3902 posts in 4211 days

#1 posted 12-16-2010 03:24 PM

Very nice looking pen crank some more lol
Is Mango hard or soft wood don’t have any of that here?

View KDO's profile


154 posts in 3283 days

#2 posted 12-16-2010 03:31 PM

Nice pen.

Try making that in a Dakota burl (ground up sunflower hulls, set in resin) for a soldier…it’s macho and looks like “camo”.
I did that for our sin and son-in-law who were both serving in Iraq several years ago.

Making pens is fun.
I’m sure it will bring you lots of fun.
And, you can make some side money doing it.

Thanks for sharing.

-- Christian, Husband, Grandpa, Salesman, amateur Woodworker.

View sedcokid's profile


2735 posts in 4112 days

#3 posted 12-16-2010 03:42 PM

Nice pen!! Great Job!!

What did you use for a finish, how many coats??

Thanks for sharing!

-- Chuck Emery, Michigan,

View sras's profile


5203 posts in 3643 days

#4 posted 12-16-2010 04:17 PM

Nice pen! The close up photos really help see the details. Thanks for sharing.

-- Steve - Impatience is Expensive

View Jaybird719's profile


141 posts in 3406 days

#5 posted 12-16-2010 07:04 PM

Thanks guys -

Gman – I found the mango to be pretty easy to turn and probably would have never had a chance to turn it if I hadn’t purchased some wood from Hawaii. It’s pretty much Maple, Oak, Sycamore and Cherry in my neck of the woods!

Kelly – I will have to check out your suggestion about the Dakota burl – haven’t turned any acrylics or resins yet. I saw woodcraft had a pens for soldiers promotion to coincide with Veteran’s day, but I didn’t have my lathe set up to turn pens then. I think next year I will have to give it a shot.

Sedcokid – I used a friction polish from craft supplies ( – I had purchased a pen turning kit from them and it was included in the set. I built up a finish of probably 6-8 coats. Then tried a buffing wheel, but the buffing wheel seemed to dull the finish, so I put the mandrel back on the lathe and put about 4 more coats of the friction polish on. I think I got lucky on this one because I turned my second pen out of walnut using the same process and I wasn’t as pleased with the finish. If anyone has some suggestions on pen finishes – I’m all ears!

Steve – thanks – I need to build a light box because this business of using my black jacket on the kitchen table is a kinda busch league – but it worked!!!

-- -Jay Hartman - Morrisville, PA

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