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Blog series by sfhipchick updated 07-21-2017 06:05 PM 5 parts 8384 reads 52 comments total

Part 1: Returning to Woodworking

07-13-2017 11:50 PM by sfhipchick | 7 comments »

My husband and I had a lovely, fully-appointed wood shop which was eaten to the ground by a wildfire a couple of years ago. After jumping through all the insurance hoops and finding a contractor, we finally have a new wood shop in place. It’s not finished but it is complete enough that we are now able to begin doing projects again. In the past, my interest was squarely centered on turning pens. I loved seeing the woodworking projects my husband did but I didn’t want to get invo...

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Part 2: My First Pen in 8+ Years

07-15-2017 12:18 AM by sfhipchick | 4 comments »

My favorite woodworking pastime is turning pens and I’ve turned about 25+ of them back when I was actively turning. That was over 8 years ago, and I was a bit nervous about working on a lathe again. Steve and I picked out a fairly boring piece of wood for me to practice on. Blond Acacia, nothing really going on, and if I killed the pen, no biggy. I would be using one of my new carbide tools. They are quite the departure from usual turning chisels so I was feeling a bit anxious but ex...

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Part 3: Pen #2 Explodes on the Lathe!

07-16-2017 02:27 AM by sfhipchick | 28 comments »

We have some lovely 11-ply pine plywood that we used to make my lathe table. With every piece we cut off, I’d stand and stare at how pretty the layers looked, and both of us agreed it would surely make a beautiful pen. So, we cut one of the pieces down to .75 x .75×5” and then went the extra step and stabilized it with Cactus Juice in our new vacuum chamber. That was our first time stabilizing wood so I was really excited to try turning this wood. That being said, I also k...

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Part 4: Some History and Things I Hope to Accomplish

07-19-2017 06:15 PM by sfhipchick | 10 comments »

My Amazing Dad and His Workshop When I was a little girl, I loved to spend time with my father in his garage workshop. I would climb up onto one of our tall stools and watch him in rapt fascination while he repaired things around the house or built something new. I loved looking at all of his neatly organized shelves full of Gerber baby food jars and cans of Gerber formula, each re-purposed for screws, nails and a myriad of unidentifiable do-dads. Dad would ask me to get various materials ...

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Part 5: Lathe Projects = A Deeper Involvement in Pen Turning--Stabilization and Casting

07-21-2017 06:05 PM by sfhipchick | 3 comments »

Years ago when I was actively turning pens, I eventually turned about 25 of them. (I have most of them and plan to photograph them once our photo studio is in place) All of them are wood of many varieties from more plain wood to heavily burled and spalted. One is segmented, and I experimented with slightly different shapes but I really like a “normal” looking pen, so I only did a couple of unusual pen turnings. The kits I used were mostly slimline, which I happen to really like be...

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