Thoughts and opinions please - International Association of Penturners
     International Association of Penturners
Pens for Service Members
Support The IAP

Go Back   International Association of Penturners > Community Forums > Penturning
  Forgot Password
Register FAQ Members List Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read
Penturning General penturning discussions not specifically addressed in one of the specialty forums.

Logged on members can hide ads!

Welcome to!

You've found the home of The International Association of Penturners. You are currently viewing our site as a guest, which gives you limited access to view discussions, photos, and library articles.

Consider joining our community today. You'll have full access to all of our content, be able to enter our contests, find local chapters near you, and post your questions and share your experience with our members all over the world.

Membership is completely free!!

If you have any problems with the registration process or your account login, please contact us.

LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 01-05-2018, 06:06 PM   #1 (permalink)
RogerC's Avatar
Join Date: Jan 2017
Location: Oklahoma
Posts: 149
Photos: 1

Default Thoughts and opinions please

I'm making some pens for a local high-end men's store, and we're doing them from old, local barns and structures. I'll be doing Cortona click, Atrax rollerball, and Majestic Jr. fountain.

Where I need help right now is with how to do the blanks. These will all be old pine and douglas fir, and my initial thought was to just turn them as a normal blank. The problem, though, is that there's not much visual interest.

Then I had a bit of an epiphany today, so I tried an experiment.

Using a technique I've used on guitar bodies, I was able to accentuate the grain to simulate what the board looked like when it was weathered on the side of the barn, and I'm curious what you think of the look.

I kinda dig it and think it would be a very cool look/feel. I'm thinking that it brings in the history of the wood and helps it tell a story, whereas my wife said she prefers smooth pens, so she probably wouldn't like one based on that.

What say you good folks?

Oh, and I was able to get some good coats of CA to finish and buffed out with 0000 steel wool, so finishing this technique isn't a problem.

Last edited by RogerC; 01-05-2018 at 06:09 PM.
RogerC is offline   Reply With Quote Top
Old 01-05-2018, 06:17 PM   #2 (permalink)
Join Date: Apr 2017
Location: Paducah, Kentucky
Posts: 877
Photos: 3


I like it; that has a lot of cool factor.
Likes: (1)
gtriever is offline   Reply With Quote Top
Old 01-05-2018, 06:17 PM   #3 (permalink)
hcpens's Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: San Antonio, TX
Posts: 867
Photos: 6


Well done, what plating are you going to use.
With thought and vision, nothing is impossible - open your mind and close your eyes, to see anything!
Likes: (1)
hcpens is offline   Reply With Quote Top
Old 01-05-2018, 08:38 PM   #4 (permalink)
Rockytime's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2014
Location: Arvada, CO 80003
Posts: 1,075
Photos: 0


I like the look of open grain. I never fill the voids on a wood pen.
For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. Romans 1:16
Rockytime is offline   Reply With Quote Top
Old 01-05-2018, 09:24 PM   #5 (permalink)
mark james's Avatar
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Medina, Ohio
Posts: 6,983
Photos: 478


I agree with Rocky - Nothing wrong with open grain, and a natural feel.

You may also want to consider some easy trim rings. Not that much more complicated, but a bit more planning, but a nice appearance for plain grained woods:

View in gallery

View in gallery
Check out the
IAP Collection

The IAP Collection is a permanent collection of pens
that has been established from the
IAP Membership explicitly for the purpose of
public display, preservation and inspiration.
mark james is offline   Reply With Quote Top
Old 01-05-2018, 09:27 PM   #6 (permalink)
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: New Brunswick/ Canada
Posts: 739
Photos: 0


Personally, I prefer a smooth wall, I'm not to into textured pens. But to each his own, I'm sure lots of members will prefer the textured look..
Likes: (2)
Lucky2 is offline   Reply With Quote Top
Old 01-05-2018, 11:11 PM   #7 (permalink)
robutacion's Avatar
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Australia - SA Adelaide Hills
Posts: 5,798
Photos: 4


First of all, those old woods can be cut at various angles to increase the grain structure and colours and you can also try making them with the finish you use on this straight grain pen and a gloss finish that way you will have 2 options on finish instead on only one, for repeated pens, the ones that will sell the most will be the ones you need to make more of, regardless what the finish or wood angle, is...!

For me, making a pen out of a "historical" (of any nature) wood should be looking as close as possible with is natural aged looks so, in this case, the technique you used in this pen is to me, one of the best finishes you could have done, however, I prefer gloss finishes generally but this is not a general pen...!

Well done...!

"Don't give others what you don't like for yourself"


robutacion is offline   Reply With Quote Top
Old 01-05-2018, 11:31 PM   #8 (permalink)
jttheclockman's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: NJ, USA.
Photos: 83


I am not a fan of the look. But you are the one making. Who will ever remember the story. To me when you say highend store I see $$$ in pens that scream $$$$No screaming there. Ordinary wood pen. Splintering will be a factor with that many sharp edges in wood. Just my opinion. Good luck
John T.
Likes: (2)
jttheclockman is offline   Reply With Quote Top
Old 01-05-2018, 11:33 PM   #9 (permalink)
Join Date: Mar 2017
Location: Houston, Texas
Photos: 12


I like what you've done, it keeps the story but adds a little character. The general consensus on the story woods is that they are usually boring, but boring woods with a good story sell better than beautiful woods with no story. I'd suggest pushing the story as much as you can - the specific building, where the wood was in the building, an old B&W photo... In addition to your darkening technique, you could also try crosscut or angle cut blanks, this can sometimes add unique character.
Likes: (1)
Dehn0045 is offline   Reply With Quote Top
Old 01-06-2018, 09:14 AM   #10 (permalink)
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Newburgh NY
Posts: 125
Photos: 0


I like the look of the pens.
Let's people know they are wood pens.

Great job

Sent from my iPad using mobile app
Likes: (1)
cseymour is offline   Reply With Quote Top
Related Content
Logged on members can hide ads


Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 08:05 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.7.6
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Search Engine Friendly URLs by vBSEO 3.6.0

Content Copyright © 2003-2018 by, LLC; All Rights Reserved
Terms Of Service   Acceptable Use Policy