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Old 05-02-2016, 02:44 PM   #51 (permalink)
DigBaddy72's Avatar
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: New Holstein, Wisconsin
Posts: 267
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My kids paid for a pen turning class at our local WoodCraft store. That was about 3 years ago, and I've been hooked since.
Keith K.
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Old 05-02-2016, 04:36 PM   #52 (permalink)
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: New Jersey
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I had taken wood shop in HS and really enjoyed the lathe projects, especially the baseball bat that I used for years. When Sears has one of those big old used lathes on its last markdown, back then they dropped the price each week till used items sold, I couldn't resist. I brought it home, set it up on a nice table, and realized I didn't have any turning projects that I could knock out quickly. When a CSUSA or PSI catalog came in with slimline pens listed, I was hooked. I made 9 pen/pencil sets for people I worked with that first year and it has become a tradition.
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Old 05-03-2016, 06:04 AM   #53 (permalink)
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Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: Southern Maryland
Posts: 1,438
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Like a lot of other people, I took shop class in Jr. high school.
I took graphic design, metal shop & woodworking.
I liked woodworking shop the best of all. After high school, I worked in a boat building shop for 3-4 years. I did a lot of fiberglass work, along with cutting wood from patterns, etc.
I started making fiberglass skateboards on my time off. I paid for my supplies thru my employer & sold the boards to a local skate shop.
I had a decent side business & made a ton of money just doing that.

After 4 years, I developed an allergy to the resins used doing glass work
and had to give it up. My Dad had a few woodworking tools & I puttered around with them building speaker boxes for my friends, etc.

I built stools, shelves, you name it. Never made much money at it, but I had fun doing it. Along came 2 marriages, several dogs, but no kids.
My wife decided she wanted to go to a wood show one day, so we went.
She saw how pens, tops, and other small projects were made & asked if I could do that. I said sure, but I'd need a lathe.

A little while after the wood show, I found a decent lathe on Craigslist.
It's my Grizzly floor lathe. I turned a few Slim lines on it, and decided it was better for making bowls & spindles than pens.
So, for Christmas one year I used my gift money to buy a bench lathe.
I haven't used it a lot since buying it, because I became disabled.

I have been fighting for 4 years now to get my disability, but so far, no luck. It's hard for me to stand for any length of time.
So I have had to adapt my workbench so I can sit down & turn.

I have my good days & my bad days with the pain I suffer from.
I am trying to get back into turning so I can get my money out of my bench lathe at least.

I just bought a bunch of new pen kits from my last Christmas gift money, and I hope to get back to making pens very soon.

Thanks for reading.
Be happy in your work...Col. Saito

My lathes:

Floor Lathe
Bench top lathe

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Old 05-03-2016, 06:57 AM   #54 (permalink)
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Lawrenceville, GA 30043
Posts: 263
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Default Buying supplies for...

Was at a nearby Woodcraft buying a supply item for scroll sawing. A gentleman was in there delivering a pen to an employee and buying more kits and materials. After transaction was completed. I asked to see pens and could I have a card. He offered to train me.

I didn't have a lathe. However he said that didn't matter. Well some months later a week after a major surgery I was home, with cabin fever. Called my friend. Drove up to his shop and spent a day with him. Learned a lot about many things including pen making. Oh his shop was on the cold side, but we became good friends. Since then he taught me basics of bowl making and supplied me with samples of many types of local woods.
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Old 05-03-2016, 08:59 AM   #55 (permalink)
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Join Date: Dec 2014
Location: Ratingen, Germany
Posts: 151
Photos: 3


In 2010 I saw a guy selling pen at the Duesseldorf Christmas market and decided I would have to try this.

On to the Internet and I found Timberbits. Ok, not being someone that goes overboard I bought 20 slimline and 20 Jr, Gent kits.

Next I decided I needed a Lathe!

End of 2011 the lathe was built and I started turning.

My wife saw the result of this and informed me that it would be a good idea if I was to make some for the Company Christmas Party Charity sale.

OK, sold 32 pens and could donate 400,- Euros to the towns child poverty Charity, felt good and I was hooked on pens.
For all sad words of tongue and pen, The saddest are these, 'It might have been'. John Greenleaf Whittier

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