Pen making update 35: 2 pens, 1 material

Oops, i have forgotten to update this in a few weeks. Oh well, here goes.

* Pen making

Pen making goes slow and steady at the moment. I am having a nightmare with cap threads at the moment and I don’t know why. I think it may just be the material but I can’t be sure. I am hoping that going back to a material that I am familiar with may sort the problem or it is a bit of a step backwards. Which is incredibly annoying.

The problem I am getting is with male threads from the barrel into the cap. You see, I am still using taps and dies at the moment and the die that I use to cut that thread is a bit too large to go in a standard mounting for a set of dies. I need something a bit bigger at the moment I am using a pair of mole grips. The problem with using them is that I can only steady the die from one side, this has lead to the thread being a tad wobbly sometimes. I have been able to fix it so far but it is annoying me. This brings me neatly onto clips. God they are annoying to fit. I have a problem with them at the moment, which I think I know how to get over but still. Basically the problem is this. I don’t like having to use the same clips over and over again yet when I come to using other clips the diameters of the holes in them make it so the hole and threaded part of the pen to compress fit them ends up being off centre. Also what is the best way to make a clip with a hidden ring to it? So far those are the two things I am really struggling with at the moment. I will beat them but it will take time.

I finished a pen for a client this week too, [here it is]( I had enough material left to make a [second one]( The client wanted a very angular pen with almost sharp corners. I drew it up for her and sent her the scale drawing so that she could see what it would look like and what clearance the materials would have so that we could come up with the sizes for the section, cap and barrel were to her specifications. The pen that I made out of the left overs had far more curves, I prefer pens with


( on them. Which


( do you prefer?

The one with the hideous match of blanks has given me something to think about. I have found something I need to learn in the process of doing it, I need to figure out how to sand the inside of the clear barrels. I think I know the theory of it but the practise is a bit tougher. So I know I need a stick of some sort to poke up inside the barrel with sand papers starting off quite coarse and ending up quite fine. I can’t get the micromesh up inside there so I will have to use some pretty fine sand paper. However I have no idea how to fix the sand paper to the stick. I have tried using duck tape and masking tape but the friction caused by the spinning of the barrel rips the paper off of the stickLast bit, I promise, I need to make a brass pen as a present for my brother in law, one of the people who helped me buy the lathe. Only problem is I have no idea how to work with brass. Anyone have any idea of how to work with brass? What sort of speed should I spin it at? What sort of tools should I need to use? Are carbide inserts ok? Thank you in advance.

That is it for this week.

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