Kitless using True-Stone

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Ironwood

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I am in the process of designing my next pen. Last night when I was looking through a drawer full of blanks, I spotted a Malachite Tuestone blank and wonderered how I could incorporate it into a kit less pen.
I haven't tried to thread Truestone before, and I don't imagine it would go well, so it looks like I will be using Ebonite to make the threaded parts. The blank is only 140mm long, so no room for mistakes, I plan to get the cap and body out of this blank.
DSC_1353.jpg


Does anyone have any experience using True-Stone for kitless pens that they would be willing to share ?
 
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magpens

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Good luck with this project, Brad !!

Will be anxiously awaiting your progress reports, etc. !

That is indeed a beautiful blank and should result in an even more beautiful pen !!

I am quite sure that you would be well-advised to not even attempt to thread TrueStone.
 

Ironwood

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Been there, done that. I think I threaded the section, but I treated the barrel and cap like wood, and sleeved them over acrylic. It was not pleasant as I remember. I could give more details of the construction, but I no longer have it
That’s an attractive pen John.
I am also planning to sleeve the Truestone, but will probably use black ebonite. I don’t have enough material in this blank to make the cap finial, so will either use more Ebonite, or the other option I have is a small offcut from another truestone blank of the same stuff, just worried about slight color variation with this option. Maybe I”ll steal your idea of the truestone button on the end of a black Ebonite finial.
 
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I used to do quite a bit of that material. I really liked the results but the learning curve was primarily in the assembly. It cracks pretty easily if you're doing a press-fit. I pretty much discarded that option and made it a slip fit with a wee bit of CA. Ed (of Exotic Blanks) cautions against using CA. He recommends LockTite.
 

darrin1200

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I made one of my first kitless out of Tru-Stone. Using a new tap and die, with a lot of lubricant, I was able to do all the threading. Unfortunately, Tru-Stone is not strong enough when it is cut thin. The first time, it broke at the barrel threads. I was able to fix it by carefully trimming the barrel and adding an acrylic insert. A real pain, because the barrel is tapered.
BF17AFBB-CA03-4C9A-B148-6FBCA428799B.jpeg
C8EB7575-C6BD-4E09-815F-08CC0752E493.jpeg

C8EB7575-C6BD-4E09-815F-08CC0752E493.jpeg


Shortly after this repair, it actually broke at the cap thread. I don’t have a picture of that, but it is not repairable. I will be making a new cap.
Luckily the client, my wife, is very understanding.
 

Ironwood

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Thanks for that info Darrin, it confirms my suspicions that it wouldn’t be suitable for threading.

I didn’t get a chance to make a start on the pen today, I had to go into town to take care of some things, which left me no spare time.
Maybe tomorrow, though I have to try and fix the solar hot water system as well....
 

Ironwood

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Things didn’t go to plan. I was trimming the corners of the truestone blank on the tablesaw, on the last cut a piece chipped off the end of the blank, reducing its usable length by about 5mm. I was already cutting it fine with the amount of material I had to work with, so I had to change to a different blank.
I chose a nice red/black acrylic Acetate, this one had plenty of length. I finished the pen barrel, and was making the section. While test fitting the section thread into the barrel, the threads were a bit too tight and the barrel cracked.
I shut everything down and turned off the lights in the shed in disgust. Starting from scratch when I go back down to the shed when the sun comes up. 2:52am here atm.
At least the rain has stopped , I might get a chance to get up on the roof and look at the solar hot water as well.
 
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magpens

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@Ironwood

Sorry to read about the demise of the TrueStone !!

With the mention of alternate materials I take it that's the end of this thread !! 🥵 :(

But I am sure that the spark of the idea will continue to glow and will eventually become a flame again !!
 

Ironwood

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Thanks for the commiserations Mal, oh well, life goes on.

Not sure I will attempt another Truestone kitless, I think I will stick with more suitable materials.

There will be a new thread when I get the next one in progress.
 

darrin1200

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I don’t think the TruStone is dead quite yet. If it’s only off by 5mm, then you can turn it into a design opportunity.
Use a complimentary acrylic. Sleeve the TruStone over the acrylic, but make the end of the acrylic long enough, to be threaded and to act as an accent ring or accent ring retainer.
The shaft of the acrylic piece needs to be large enough, to be drilled later, to accommodate section threads and inner barrel hole. If you are going to also make a finial, then make sure the acrylic is long enough to pass all the way through the The same applies if it is in the cap section. This is how I do all of my wood and difficult material pens.
Here’s a really bad sketch to show you what I mean.

7FFC5901-2328-4A43-8449-78D79738D26C.jpeg
 

Ironwood

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I don’t think the TruStone is dead quite yet. If it’s only off by 5mm, then you can turn it into a design opportunity.
Use a complimentary acrylic. Sleeve the TruStone over the acrylic, but make the end of the acrylic long enough, to be threaded and to act as an accent ring or accent ring retainer.
The shaft of the acrylic piece needs to be large enough, to be drilled later, to accommodate section threads and inner barrel hole. If you are going to also make a finial, then make sure the acrylic is long enough to pass all the way through the The same applies if it is in the cap section. This is how I do all of my wood and difficult material pens.
Here’s a really bad sketch to show you what I mean.
Cheers Darrin, I will save the truestone blank for another day. I will need to use it as you say, with a finial on the end of the pen body instead of a closed end one piece like I was originally planning.
It leaves me the opportunity to use a button of the truestone on each end of the pen. I think it will look OK.

I have been trying to make the original design with an easier to work material, had a couple of failures so far. I am trying to go as thin and short as I can using a JoWo #6 and Schmidt converter. The 10mm section thread and 12mm cap thread doesn’t leave much meat in between. Might have to change to 3/8 or 9mm for the section thread.
 

darrin1200

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I use that combination of section and cap thread all the time. I know it works. A lot depends on the type of material you are using, as to how thin. I always try to leave 1mm between the inner (10mm) and outer (12mm) threads. I think with the #6 nib, you will have trouble with the section cracking if you use 9mm threads. I know I did.
 

More4dan

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I used aluminum to line mine so I could maximize the wall thickness of the TruStone. My next I will try some ebonite and use the ebonite for the body threads and section to let me use a single blank.


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