What is the "Pen Turners' Swap" and how does it work???

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Forum topic by itsme_timd posted 09-23-2008 09:14 PM 2423 views 1 time favorited 11 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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690 posts in 4103 days

09-23-2008 09:14 PM

Topic tags/keywords: pen trade swap turn

Hi Everyone,

For a blog overview on what the swap is all about click here.

I’ve had a few people that are interested in participating but wanted to know exactly how it works, I’ll do my best to explain in this post how we do it – and welcome others that have participated to add to it.

  • This trade starts with a list of traders, we’ll probably limit to 10-15 traders to limit the time it takes to make a full round. If we get more than that we may split into 2 trades.
  • I’ll start the box. The good thing with the trade now is that we’ve already had 2 rounds and the box is VERY well popluated with a variety of blanks – as well as finished pens and kits.
  • Before we start the trade we’ll set an order that we’ll follow. Mostly based on geography but I’ve also had some requests by those that have lots to offer that they are closer to the first of the list so they can seed the box even more!
  • When one LJ gets the box, they make a swap (take what they like and put back in) and send it on to the next person on the list. We use the “trade UP or even” guideline. If you take 5 spalted maple, 2 curly Koa and 3 cigar pen kits then don’t try to pull off just putting a piece of poplar back in! ;-)
  • This continues until a complete circle is made and the box comes back to me.
  • As long as there is interest we’ll do it again!
  • Everyone is welcome to join us. We kindly ask that if you participate then you stick with it. Please don’t drop the ball and disappear on us, especially not if you’ve got the box! So far we’ve been 100% successful on this!
  • Make sure to identify your material! We get some awesome stuff but sometimes we don’t know what it is. Simply write on the material with a pencil or Sharpie and let us know what great stuff we’re swapping for – we’ll make sure to return the favor.
  • Take some pics of what you take and what you add, we LOVE pictures – the more the merrier. This keeps everyone interested (those that are in the swap and also those that are casually watching) and it also helps us if we need to ID something that missed getting tagged.
  • Post your pics along with some commentary in the blog. Be creative and have fun – this is an adventure! Well, somewhat… But our creative comments make it seem like a great adventure.
  • Try to watch the blog and be ready for the box, make your trade, and get it back on the road quickly. If you have the box more than a few days then we have Jocks that live in your area that have volunteered to be “Enforcers”, we’ll stop by your house and rough you up – then take all your lumber. It ain’t pretty…

I think that’s about the size of it. Join us, make the trade, take some pics, post in the blog, send the box on its way – that’s it.

We’ve had a lot of fun with this and hope the new traders do, too. If you’ve got any other questions let me know.

-- Tim D. - Woodstock, GA

11 replies so far

View Mark Shymanski's profile

Mark Shymanski

5623 posts in 3985 days

#1 posted 09-23-2008 11:45 PM

Hmmm, I didn’t know the bit about the enforcers;-) Do they use hand turned bats of lacewood or bubinga? Do they use jigs to get repeatable results….measure twice whack once… People want to know:-)

-- "Checking for square? What madness is this! The cabinet is square because I will it to be so!" Jeremy Greiner LJ Topic#20953 2011 Feb 2

View Karson's profile


35158 posts in 4673 days

#2 posted 09-24-2008 01:34 AM

I thought that the enforcers traveled around in Mrtin’s Corporate jet

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Appomattox Virginia [email protected]

View itsme_timd's profile


690 posts in 4103 days

#3 posted 09-24-2008 03:58 AM

Uh-oh, I think I’ve said too much already… These enforcers are a serious bunch and I sure don’t want to get on their bad side! ;-)

-- Tim D. - Woodstock, GA

View MsDebbieP's profile


18619 posts in 4433 days

#4 posted 09-29-2008 04:28 PM

nice write-up of the process.
I wasn’t aware of the enforcers but I wondered how you kept the box moving and filled with goodies!

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (, Young Living Wellness )

View Woodtreker's profile


37 posts in 4308 days

#5 posted 09-30-2008 06:37 PM

I would love to do this… Even if I have to put up with the enforcers…

-- Derrel Frankfort, KY

View mleedix's profile


63 posts in 3823 days

#6 posted 10-01-2008 01:49 PM

Keep us in the loop. I’ll have to discuss it with my son but think he’ll be interested.

-- - Michael "Over 300000 species of trees, yet we take the credit for their beauty..."

View Roger's profile


20971 posts in 3076 days

#7 posted 11-07-2010 01:50 AM

Is this still going on? I might be interested in doing this after the holidays.

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe. Keep your dust collector fed. [email protected]

View woodprof's profile


44 posts in 3462 days

#8 posted 11-08-2010 05:44 AM

This sounds like a great idea. I’m guessing, knowing what LJ members are like, that most put in more than what they take out. I’d be really interested in joining if this is still going on.

View itsme_timd's profile


690 posts in 4103 days

#9 posted 11-11-2010 10:28 PM

Hey guys, we haven’t done this in a lonnnnng time. I’ve still got a box of goodies here from the last swap – my time in the shop has been almost nil for quite a while. The swap was a blast and if anyone wants to head another one up I’d be glad to send them the box of goodies to get it started off with. LMK if you’re interested.

-- Tim D. - Woodstock, GA

View andysden's profile


45 posts in 2690 days

#10 posted 10-13-2011 07:22 PM

I would be interested in getting on your list if you cannot send to canada let me know and I will give you an American address
Thanks Andysden

Andy Jude
12034 Guelph line
L0P 1bo
Campbellville Ontario Canada

View itsme_timd's profile


690 posts in 4103 days

#11 posted 10-14-2011 04:37 AM

Hi guys, the swap has been retired for a couple years now. If someone would like to do one feel free to ask me any questions about it – we had a pretty good process down. Also feel free to copy any info from my posts if you like. Good luck!

-- Tim D. - Woodstock, GA

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