Kit sets that have both a pen and a pencil?

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mcpesq817

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My girls want to give their grandfather a pen and pencil for his birthday next month. I've been looking for a set (that has both a pen and a pencil) but options are quite limited. Aside from the slim type pens, which I'm less interested in, it seems like the only kits with both are: Vertex, Stratus, Power, Spartan, and Deluxe Sketch. Executive makes a pencil, but only in gold. I'm a little more partial (and think my father-in-law will be more partial) to a style more like the Gatsby - a little thicker, clean lines, and with plenty of blank showing. Stratus seems the closest I can find, but I'm not too crazy about the metal near the tip.

Any suggestions? To date, I've ordered my kits from PSI, but I've also been looking at other places like Berea, etc. They all seem to carry the same as the other guy though.

As another question - I'm assuming that most people just want pens so that's where the market is. Do people these days not want a pen and pencil set?

Hope this is the right forum to post this question in. Thanks in advance.
 
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More4dan

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There is a Parker refill replacement that converts a pen to a pencil. That would open up many possibilities I would think. I’ve no experience with it however. Maybe others have.


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magpens

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If you want to stick with PSI, then I think, from what you have said, that your best bet is the Vertex Click design for the pen and then this conversion kit for a separate pencil: https://www.pennstateind.com/store/PKFP4030PC.html

However, I think you should consider other sources as well ... you may find them more to your liking ... totally different family of kits.

You should consider the Schmidt Pencil Mechanism.

This will convert several twist pen kits to a pencil.

Appropriate kits are Perfect Fit, Cigar, El Grande, and perhaps some others.

Best source is Beartoothwoods.com

I recommend this as the best source of information as well. . Give Ernie a phone call. . He is the most helpful guy.
I have no hesitation in recommending this as your best option, both for the information you need, and for the kits you require.
 
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gtriever

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The Sierra / Elegant Sierra can be modified for a pencil. Google "Sierra Pencil Conversion" and download the PDF file from Arizona Silhouette.
 

Gersh

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I'll double down on recommending the mistral from Beaufort. I made a set of them and they are high quality and showcase the blanks. You can order them from turners warehouse or if you are ordering a decent amount of them going directly through Beaufort is a touch cheaper even with shipping.
 

mcpesq817

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Thank you so much! I wasn't aware of some of these suppliers, so really appreciate the tips! Looking them over this morning, I think the Sierra, Cigar, and Mistral kits are strong contenders.

This might be a dumb question, but when you see multiple suppliers carry the same pen kit (let's say Sierra), is that pen kit identical (i.e., made by the same company)? Or is just that style of pen the same, but you might have different quality components? Reason I'm asking is that I don't see myself selling pens, but just turning them as a hobby and gifting them to people. So, I don't mind spending a little more money on higher quality kits.

Another dumb question - I saw on Bear Tooth that they carry bright and black nickel tubes. I assume if I'm using a wood blank that switching up from the standard brass is not necessary? I've only turned acrylic thus far, and had a bit of problem on some translucent blanks where a white enamel or possibly a nickel might be preferable, but was wondering why someone would try out the nickel. Is it only for acrylic blanks, and where you want to change the color effect of the blank?
 

greenacres2

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...trimmed...
Another dumb question - I saw on Bear Tooth that they carry bright and black nickel tubes. I assume if I'm using a wood blank that switching up from the standard brass is not necessary? I've only turned acrylic thus far, and had a bit of problem on some translucent blanks where a white enamel or possibly a nickel might be preferable, but was wondering why someone would try out the nickel. Is it only for acrylic blanks, and where you want to change the color effect of the blank?
Actually a pretty smart question. Typically, folks think about "back painting" or using colored tubes for acrylic/alumilite/etc since they can have some transparency--but rarely for wood. If i'm turning burls or wormy woods, i paint my tubes as well--as at times small voids may present themselves near the end of a turn. Usually use tan or dark brown--depending on the wood color--and at times will still end up adding a filler. i'm not a fan of bright brass spots showing through a darker burl.
earl
 

More4dan

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With acrylic blanks it is best to paint the inside of the blank after drilling to keep the tube from showing. I use spray paint with a color to best match the blank. Let it dry over night. Just a quick spray from both ends.
Make sure you post pictures of your set when done. I’ve done the Vertex click and pencil set in carbon fiber. They make a nice matching set.

Danny


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magpens

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Michael,

For solid, sound wood blanks with no voids, you can forget about the different colored tubes and stick with brass. . For acrylics and woods with cracks/voids, it is sometimes helpful to use a white or nickel tube but it is better to paint the inside of the hole with a suitable color.

Regarding pen kit names, like Sierra ... if a vendor says "Sierra" it should be the Berea Hardwoods "Sierra" but you should check the picture to make sure you are actually getting the Berea "Sierra".

You picked the one name of kit where there can be some confusion. . The Berea "Sierra" was the first of that style to hit the market. . There are now many similar kits with names like "Gatsby" (vendor PSI), "Mesa" (vendor Woodturningz), and others, and SOMETIMES they are referred to as "Sierra" when they really are not. . USUALLY you can count on "Sierra" to be the actual Berea "Sierra" but not always. . So be careful.

The "Sierra", "Gatsby", "Mesa", etc. are just a little bit different and you should familiarize yourself with those differences and chose the one that you like the best in styling; I think the quality of those three are all good, but the stylings are slightly different.

Oh, one other name that I know about that you should be careful about is the Dayacom (manufacturerer) kit called "Zen" ... don't accept any substitute on that ... make sure it is from Dayacom. . There is a look-alike with the same name which is definitely inferior.

There may be others where you need to be very careful about naming but can't think of any at this moment.
 
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ed4copies

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Michael,


You picked the one name of kit where there can be some confusion. . The Berea "Sierra" was the first of that style to hit the market. . There are now many similar kits with names like "Gatsby" (vendor PSI), "Mesa" (vendor Woodturningz), and others, and SOMETIMES they are referred to as "Sierra" when they really are not. . USUALLY you can count on "Sierra" to be the actual Berea "Sierra" but not always. . So be careful.

The "Sierra", "Gatsby", "Mesa", etc. are just a little bit different and you should familiarize yourself with those differences and chose the one that you like the best in styling; I think the quality of those three are all good, but the stylings are slightly different.

Oh, one other name that I know about that you should be careful about is the Dayacom (manufacturerer) kit called "Zen" ... don't accept any substitute on that ... make sure it is from Dayacom. . There is a look-alike with the same name which is definitely inferior.

There may be others where you need to be very careful about naming but can't think of any at this moment.



The Chinese manufacturer who puts out kits that are named the same as the original offers SEVERAL such kits. So, no you are not assured of the same quality if buying from an American vendor who cooperates with the manufacturer in this deceptive practice.
 

moke

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I made a Stratus pen and pencil set and I was very disappointed in the pencil.....it was more like a drafting pencil that needs to be "pointed". I gave them to my wife, she always says she loves it but I can tell, she doesn't use it. If you pull off the end cap, there is a sharpener in it. Maybe I am wrong, but I thought it was weird. Please excuse my cell phone photo......
 

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penicillin

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I buy kits at my local Rockler store, which is convenient for me. As others have pointed out, the kits comes from several sources. If you aren't sure about the source of a Rockler pen kit, check Penn State first, Rizheng second.

I wanted to make a few matching pen/pencil sets, and I bought them at Rockler. Here are some Rockler pen/pencil sets that I have made. The five digit numbers are Rockler's ID numbers:

Slimline Gold 61263 and 61254 (cheap, black rubs off from clip, probably Rizheng):
Twist Pen: https://www.rockler.com/slimline-pen-hardware-kit-gold
Click Pencil 0.7 mm: https://www.rockler.com/slimline-pencil-hardware-kit-gold

Slimline Gold 24k 58856 and 59107 (better quality, probably Penn State):
Twist Pen: https://www.rockler.com/slimline-pen-hardware-kit-24k-gold
Click Pencil 0.7 mm: https://www.rockler.com/slimline-click-pencil-hardware-kit-24k-gold

Long Wood Gold 46620 and 48521 (source unknown):
Click Pen: https://www.rockler.com/long-wood-click-pen-hardware-kit-gold
Click Pencil 0.7 mm: https://www.rockler.com/longwood-click-pencil-hardware-kit

The same pen and pencil kits are available in other finishes. The Long Wood click pen mechanism feels very different from the Slimline Pro click pen mechanism. The Long Wood pen requires more force and feels more "mechanical" compared with the Slimline Pro.

The photos show:
Slimline Gold Twist Pen in Bocote
Slimline Gold 24k Pencil in Bocote
Long Wood Gold Click Pen and Pencil in Zebrawood
Long Wood Gold Click Pen and Pencil in "Asteroid Glow Stonez" acrylic, which glow in the dark.

Note the mismatch between the cheap Slimline "Gold" and the good "Gold 24k". The black stripes are slightly different. Dang!

I hope this helps!
 

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mcpesq817

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Nice pens and pencils Mike and Penicillin (great alias)!

I think I'm going to try the Cigar, El Grande, and Sierra pens/pencils, which I think I can get from Bear Tooth. I also want to try the Mistral - they look really nice, but I just want to make sure my skill level is up to par to spend that kind of money on a kit.

Really appreciate all the responses here. Thank you so much! Time to hit the workshop and try out a couple of kits using wood blanks instead of acrylic for a change :)
 
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