Lesson Learned

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JessePens

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Jan 10, 2019
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90
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La Crescent, MN
This is my first attempt at a segmented pen using metal (aluminum from a beer can).

I was making this as a gift, and thought it would be neat to have a segment near the tip of curly maple. I cut it so that the end-grain would show, not realizing that I would get tearout near the thin transition sections.
I tried to repair using wood dust mixed with glue, but was unhappy with the result. The wood also had some coloration that made it look "dirty".

I ended up cutting that section off and adding a segment of red burl.

Overall, I think the end result turned out nice and I'm sure they'll be happy to receive as a free pen.
 

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sbwertz

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May 11, 2010
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Phoenix, AZ
Yup. You've got a knife edge with wood without a solid grain structure. Next time you do that, don't try to turn it down so far, but go with some coarse sandpaper to take it to the final diameter.

-gary
The tried and true "80 grit gouge." :biggrin:
 

leehljp

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Feb 6, 2005
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6,958
Location
Tunica, MS,
No disrespect to the others on the use of sandpaper, but with metal/wood, I do not use sandpaper at all.

The dirty end that you mentioned . . .
The wood also had some coloration that made it look "dirty".
That "dirty look" is sanded metal deposits on the wood. Sandpaper does that.

Look at this photo: http://www.penturners.org/photos/images/940/1_30_Pieces_of_Silver.jpg

Brass, aluminum (and the sliver dots in the photo) SMEAR with sanding. Some people accept a minuscule amount of sanding dust but I could not. Those two pens were turned smooth as a baby's cheek with a well sharpened scraper, NO sandpaper. Sandpaper smears metal sanding dust into the wood.

The key is a freshly sharpened (not "good enough" but the "best"; Good enough is the enemy of Best) and using it for about 20 to 30 seconds, swipe it on a hone and turn 20 - 30 seconds, swipe again, and so on. I use HSS which dulls quicker than carbide inserts but I can sharpen HSS better than the best of carbide inserts. Metal and wood is a case of using the sharpest of the sharp, and HSS give it. Learning to sharpen HSS like that is a good experience that brings on a great feeling. I use carbide inserts often, but when it comes to the final sizing, I turn to HSS, even on metal and wood segments/laminates.
 
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