After last weeks bad news I had a rush of good news. As I mentioned last week it was my sisters 40th and I posted an image of the pen I made for her on the Sunday. Well thanks to that I got a tonne of interest in my pens at the party and I got a few messages over this and on instagram. I got some business cards printed off too which look really good.
Anyway, pen stuff! I made a [section](https://i.imgur.com/QmVh18N.jpg). It took me, like [5 odd](https://i.imgur.com/oJzQAvL.jpg) attempts to get it but I finally managed it. I have a prototype I can work from. This has helped me make the [first section](https://i.imgur.com/3DHQksb.jpg) that is going out to a client. Ideally I would have liked to practise a bit more before I send one out but I think that they call that learning on the job. So, as is tradition I am going to share how I do it and the pitfalls I hit and how I overcame them so others reading this don’t make the same mistake.
So, to make a section I start with a piece of blank roughly 15mm diamter and 34mm in length, an off-cut from the end of the blank used for the barrel works. I shave the cylinder down so it is about 1mm narrower than the threaded section of the barrel. One end I then turn down until it is the right diameter for the die I am using to thread it into the barrel. Once it is threaded I fit a
(https://i.imgur.com/iQi3bMX.jpg) around it which is basically another off-cut that is threaded to fit onto it, this reinforces it, without it the threaded section will just crack and at worst explode when drilled. I then drill a width which is wide enough to fit the converter in, I drill deep enough so I drill slightly into the thicker part, this is so when I drill in from the other side there is more material to take the stress of drilling the holes both sides. I then flip the small blank around and drill through with the smallest drill bit. This is the bit for the threaded part of the nib unit. I then got the wider drill bit and widened the hole to take into account the wider part of the nib unit. Then taking my taps I thread the narrow part and fit a dummy nib unit. When I am happy with the thread I screw it into a dummy blank I have made and fit it into the lathe then use my files to shape it by hand. Shaping it by hand is a lot gentler than using the lathe tools so it reduces the risk of breakage.
The other good news I got is to do with the lathe situation. My brother in law is going to lend me the money to buy one. Once I get a lathe at home I can make more pens and you never know I might be able to tempt more people into buying a custom pen from me, which would be nice, I like working with people to make their pens.
That’s it for this week.
If you feel like it you can follow me on instagram, my name over there is @denscustompens