Weekly update: Year 2 week 49: Cute assistants and resin spillages

First off I would like some feedback from you lovely people. We are approaching 2 years of doing these updates and each week I am trying to think of new and interesting things to talk about, thing is I am afraid of repeating myself and I don’t want these to become a ‘here look at these pens I made this week’ kind of thing, so this is where it is over to you. Could you answer these questions for me please?

* What would you like to see me cover more? Mistakes and how to resolve them, techniques and design, tips and tricks, technical stuff or other.

* What would you like to see less of? The more personal stuff, the pen shots, etc

* Anything else you can thing of which is even partially relevant?

* Giveaway

We have just filed our tax return and discovered that we have paid off all of our initial outgoing when we set things up. This is a big thing for us and we feel like celebrating so for our anniversary we are going to do a giveaway. I will keep you informed I just wanted to give you prior warning.

* Pen making

So I suppose you want to know about the image of all the [pens](https://i.imgur.com/5fhNUrI.jpg) that were made over this weekend. So starting from the left and moving to the right. The first one is made from a divine islands blank (which are wonderful to use) that features a non flush cap and a clip. I hate fitting clips however I have figured out that my old lathe tools have the perfect overhang to the depth of the groove you cut for the clip is exactly the right depth for the clip ring. I love it when coincidences like that happen.

The next four pens are from blanks that I have made. The first is a titan made of a translucent mix. I intend to polish the insides of this next weekend if I get the time between long over due meet ups with family, I made this one for a birthday present for a friend, it’s only 3 months late as the first one didn’t go to plan. The next up is another present for a friend. Some of you will notice the cap is slightly unscrewed, that is because when the cap is tight the ends don’t align properly but that is a fix I am going to make now that it is polished. The next one is the first pen I have made from the Alumilite clear slow resin I have only just started using, this is from the second batch of blanks, more on that later. The blue one with the silver roll stop was made a while ago but a client wanted a roll stop added to it, which is an easy enough change to make, I think it looks quite good.

The next ones are all brooks blanks. A pm1 which is a commission to a shape that I don’t normally do but looks quite good. The next is one of my designs and again is a customer order for an abalone blank. Finally the one I made for stock, I had a spare roll stop made of copper and I wanted to use it on a fitting pen, slightly different shade of copper but I still think it looks really good on this pen.

* Blank making

Well, this was… eventful. I had not used Alumilite Clear slow before and I was a bit nervous. O.k. so a little explanation is in order. What I have been using is Alumilite Epoxy which has a working time of around 35 minutes so you can take your time when making the blanks and I quite regularly used all the time. Alumilite Clear Slow has a working time of 15 minutes and Alumilite Clear has a working time of 7 minutes, it’s safe to say I won’t be using clear any time soon.

I tried the first batch on my own only using 4 colours, teal, purple, black and white. I mixed up the resin and while rushing I made the mistake of mixing them in the molds too early. What I ended up with was [this](https://i.imgur.com/UPscwBo.jpg) , still pretty but not what I was looking for. The second attempt was the eventful one and the one where I had the cutest little [assistant](https://i.imgur.com/qoo2e3D.jpg) who picked out all the colours (I asked her and her mother if I could post this image). Thing is I ran out of time on this one and it started to set outside of the mold so I rushed more and spilled a lot (thank the gods for the silicone matt), when I pulled it out of the pot, this is what I was [met with](https://i.imgur.com/7DdFlvn.jpg). Removing the blanks I ended up with [this](https://i.imgur.com/YqyosRq.jpg) check out the blue one on the end. HA!

So I think that is it for this week. Take care of yourself and your loved ones.

Anyways as usual you can follow me on instagram [@denscustompens](https://www.instagram.com/denscustompens/)

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