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Project Information

After making pens (including fountain pens), key rings, etc. of various styles and sizes, using different materials (wood of all kinds as well as plastic), I wanted to do some segmented pieces. I turned a few pens and magnifier glasses this afternoon with an inlay design. I used a combination of cherry, walnut, and maple for the inlays.

The pic here shows some of them (for comparison, a magnifier glass made of African blackwood I turned before is also there). This is my first project pic submitted to LJ and I hope it turns out fine.

Gallery

Comments

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1,143 Posts
Those look nice Chuck.

What was your technique for the inlay slots? Are those kerfs cut at an angle on each side of the pen blank, perhaps with your tablesaw?

I make a batch of pen/pencil sets every now then, and also do inlay work, but have never combined the two.
 

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Chuck,

These are really nice. As a non-turner, every time I see one of these I regret not having a lathe in my shop.

Thanks for the post.
 

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Hi Woodhacker,

Thanks for your remark. Yes as you suggested, but I did the cutting on a mitresaw as the setup is much simpler. This technique was first reported in this forum by a fellow LJ: http://tinyurl.com/4m6x26
 

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Hey Scott,

A mini-lathe is all you need to start your turning experience. A pre-owned one may cost you $100 or even less (some people even make their own with a motor and wood, etc.). Economy gouges or preowned ones cost under $50 or so a set. As you improve your skills (and gain confidence), you can upgrade your lathe and tools. You can turn not only pens, key rings but also salt shakers, letter openers, handles (for your awls, screwdrivers, etc.) and many more. If you don't know anyone who can show you how to start turning, go to one of the woodworking shows or exhibitions and you can attend one of their hands-on pen turning workshops (free of charge, normally but be prepared for the temptation of spending (willingly) more on pen supplies, etc. after you know how simple it's to turn a pen - for me, blank preparation takes more time.). Happy turning,
 

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These look like fun projects. Nice job.
 

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Yeah Chuck, I keep seeing things like this tha make me want to get a mini or midi lathe. Not interested in turning bowls or that type of thing, just small items and handles for files, and maybe things like this. I have little enough space as it is though…..... Or time…........... Do you find you do fewer traditional projects now?
 

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Hi TomK,

Same here - I don't do much bowl turning because, unlike pens, it's relatively expensive to give away bowls. Since it doesn't take up a lot of time (I can turn half a dozen pens in a couple of hours), I'm doing fewer traditional projects not because of pen turning but because of some other projects. I'm going to make an arts & crafts chair this summer and if the outcome is good, I'll be making more of it and it feels good to be back (soon) in the fold of traditional woodworking. Have a great weekend,
 

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You have made beautiful handles and pen. I am specialised in making handles but I don't have lathe and so cannot make round handles. Your project has encouraged me to get a simple lathe and do more handles. Thanks for the post.
Sharad
 

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nice looking segment work. your design on the pens would look great on the magnifiers as well.
 

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The cross design looks unique and nice. I'm posting another turning work of mine ….
 
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