My Intermediate contest entry...

Signed-In Members Don't See This Ad
See more from Hendu3270

Hendu3270

Member
Joined
Mar 13, 2012
Messages
919
Location
Pearland, Texas
This is the pen I entered into the Intermediate Birthday Bash contest. I know I shouldn’t, but I actually feel guilty for winning first place. When I look at all those pens, I just can’t convince myself, that mine is any better than the others. Every pen entered was simply outstanding, and everyone who entered should be proud.

On to the post…



I had typed up a fairly lengthy explanation on how it came about, prior to finishing the final steps of the pen. (I just kept updating the text as I changed the pen). I needed to wait till the contest was complete in order to post this obviously. So here goes….


This pen was my second pen to ever turn…but let me clarify that first. This pen was first completed with a Black / White Ebony blank over a year ago. The grain did not line up, but the finish was like glass. For my second pen ever, it was great. But, as my experience advanced, and my preferences for burl grew, I decided to “re-do” the pen.

It’s turned in stabilized blue Buckeye Burl, with aluminum accent bands sandwiched between contrasting Tasmanian Eucalyptus Burl bands. The cap end has a custom finial, with an outer ring turned from the same blue Buckeye Burl, then a ring of Eucalyptus Burl and finished off with an 1/8” aluminum center dot. Finish is CA. I started off using several layers of aluminum from a soda can, but the layers didn’t always stay together while gluing. I’ve now found the aluminum sheets people are talking about at Lowe’s. This one has one aluminum can band, and the rest are solid sections from Lowe’s.

The process to get this pen to where it is now was somewhat odd. As I said, it was broken down and re-turned from its original state. But, I had turned it entirely from the Buckeye Burl (and fully finished with CA and polished). The pen, in that state, is how I planned on entering it into the contest. But, in looking through some posts here, I decided to try my hand at adding Eucalyptus Burl bands to the ends of each blank. So, a portion of Buckeye was turned away, and the sections of Euca. Burl were cut, glued on, trimmed, turned, and again fully sanded, finished and polished with CA. At this point I felt it needed a custom finial. I planned on using the Buckeye burl and Euca. Burl but once I got into it, I figured it needed an aluminum rod as a center. Once the finial was finished, the body of the pen seem to be lacking when compared to the finial. Sooo, the blanks went back on the lathe again, and I cut away material to make room for the thin aluminum bands and then worked up new Euca Burl pieces to be glued onto the tubes, outside the rings. AGAIN!! This pen was fully turned and finished in CA and then polished. At that point I found a piece of 3/16” aluminum bar that I had forgotten I had and started thinking, “man, I could make a thicker band out of that pretty easily to go on the cap”. Back I went, cutting material away, prepping the aluminum, prepping a new Euca Burl piece and gluing it all back on. Then trimmed and turned the cap blank again. While turning it, I realized the inside of the 3/16” aluminum bar did not drill smoothly, and a fouled up inside surface was making one edge of the band look terrible. It was not a smooth edge against the wood. At that point the thicker band was removed and replaced with another piece of aluminum the same as the others, and a thicker piece of Euca. Burl. Then it was finished again. And here we are.

I think the pen turned out much better than its original form. But looking back, I need to plan out the pen from the beginning and just go with it and not keep removing material and changing things. The problem was these new techniques I was finding out about, and the ideas rolling around in my head all happened at the same time, and while this pen was actually on the lathe. I should have used these methods on future pens, and not kept changing this one, (although it worked for the best in the end I reckon). I’m just glad I didn’t fully assemble the pen each time before deciding to change it.

Anyways, thanks for looking and thank you to all that voted for this pen, the judges for considering it worthy of the top 10 and to Berea Hardwoods for sponsoring the cotest. I’m still amazed at this as every pen entered was top notch. C/C Welcome!
 

Attachments

  • Intermediate(1).jpg
    Intermediate(1).jpg
    41.5 KB · Views: 212
  • Intermediate(2).jpg
    Intermediate(2).jpg
    41.6 KB · Views: 164
  • Intermediate(3).jpg
    Intermediate(3).jpg
    41.1 KB · Views: 143
Signed-In Members Don't See This Ad

Hendu3270

Member
Joined
Mar 13, 2012
Messages
919
Location
Pearland, Texas
Thanks guys. Hopefully the post isn't too long for folks to consider reading. Kind of a funny story how it came about I thought.
 

Dalepenkala

Member
Joined
Dec 11, 2012
Messages
1,642
Location
Auburn, Michigan
Chris wonderful pen and great job! I entered my HRB Sceptre in that contest. When I seen your pen I new it was going to be in the top 5.

Congrats on the win and pen!
 

Triple Crown

Member
Joined
Jan 18, 2012
Messages
122
Location
Alexandria, Virginia
It turned out beautiful!

Hi Chis,

I agree with the populace. I think that this pen is absolutely beautiful! I love the color combination, proportions, and the matching finial. WOW! I don't know if I could have rebuilt more than once after it was fully turned and polished, for fear of just screwing it up. (That's what usually happens when I overthink things.) You sure did it right on this one though!! Great job! Thank you so much for sharing the story of that pen!!!

Greg
 

Hendu3270

Member
Joined
Mar 13, 2012
Messages
919
Location
Pearland, Texas
Thanks for posting the "story". A beautiful pen with an over-the-top finial.

Thanks! It was my first custom finial. I just used my 4 jaw chuck to hold everything. I've just received my collet chuck and turned a navigator with a custom finial and it's MUCH easier to use. For me, the main thing is I feel better using the collet chuck since I don't have to worry about the sharp jaw edges trying to "grab" me. Just more relaxed with the collet setup :biggrin:
 
Top Bottom