Of all the hare brained ideas......

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KenB259

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I’ve had in regard to this hobby, this one has me throwing in the towel, hanging my head in shame and admitting defeat Let me explain. A couple of years ago, we replaced our counter top with a quartz countertop from Cambria. Ever since I’ve always thought what a beautiful pens could make from that material. So finally my curiosity gave way and I ordered a couple small samples, pretty cheap actually, less than 5 dollars for a 3 x 3 inch sample. I had some cheap masonry drill bits, bought a rather inexpensive diamond blade that would fit my table saw. The quartz countertop is not as some people think a solid piece of quartz but rather crushed and powdered quartz and resin. So down the rabbit hole I went. Cut the samples, which are 3/4 inch thick into 3/4 inch blanks, that part went fine, they cut very easily with the diamond blade. Chucked one up and drilled through with masonry bits. Went okay but very slow, took probably 2 hours to get to the final hole size of 3/8. Glued in a painted tube and glued with epoxy that I added a little black dye to. Next day I squared it with my disc sander, again really slow but got it down. Turning it, now that’s a whole nother ballgame. Ruined a carbide cutter in about 30 seconds. So I’m not pursuing this any further. My wife graciously pointed out, it’s not a complete failure because otherwise I would have always wondered
IMG_2051.JPG
IMG_2053.JPG
if it would work. There may be something out there that would work, but I’m done with this idea. I’ll post a couple of pictures. The slight roundness you see on the blank was done on the disc sander. I’m sticking to wood and the occasional acrylic.


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Paul in OKC

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Have some stuff like that myself. When drilling with a regular bit it did drill.....some. Mostly rub of the point. But I did smell the resin. Being hard headed as I am I will still give it a go some time in the near future. Will post my results as well.
 

stonepecker

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I’ve had in regard to this hobby, this one has me throwing in the towel, hanging my head in shame and admitting defeat Let me explain. A couple of years ago, we replaced our counter top with a quartz countertop from Cambria. Ever since I’ve always thought what a beautiful pens could make from that material. So finally my curiosity gave way and I ordered a couple small samples, pretty cheap actually, less than 5 dollars for a 3 x 3 inch sample. I had some cheap masonry drill bits, bought a rather inexpensive diamond blade that would fit my table saw. The quartz countertop is not as some people think a solid piece of quartz but rather crushed and powdered quartz and resin. So down the rabbit hole I went. Cut the samples, which are 3/4 inch thick into 3/4 inch blanks, that part went fine, they cut very easily with the diamond blade. Chucked one up and drilled through with masonry bits. Went okay but very slow, took probably 2 hours to get to the final hole size of 3/8. Glued in a painted tube and glued with epoxy that I added a little black dye to. Next day I squared it with my disc sander, again really slow but got it down. Turning it, now that’s a whole nother ballgame. Ruined a carbide cutter in about 30 seconds. So I’m not pursuing this any further. My wife graciously pointed out, it’s not a complete failure because otherwise I would have always wondered View attachment 246771View attachment 246772if f your choice to the blankoit would work. There may be something out there that would work, but I’m done with this idea. I’ll post a couple of pictures. The slight roundness you see on the blank was done on the disc sander. I’m sticking to wood and the occasional acrylic.


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If you want to try........
I would chuck it up again and start with 60 grit sanding paper to get it round. Then move to higher grits to get is smoother.
Once you get into the high 200 or low 300......you could start putting a shape of your choice, to the blank. get to 600+ grit and then move to the micro mesh pads.
I am not saying this will work for you. But you can give it a try.
Best of luck and happy turning.
 

KenB259

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If you want to try........
I would chuck it up again and start with 60 grit sanding paper to get it round. Then move to higher grits to get is smoother.
Once you get into the high 200 or low 300......you could start putting a shape of your choice, to the blank. get to 600+ grit and then move to the micro mesh pads.
I am not saying this will work for you. But you can give it a try.
Best of luck and happy turning.
I don't think I have the patience o_O
 

Jehster1

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"Its better to try and fail than never try at all." < stolen somewhere

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows, in the end, the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”

― Theodore Roosevelt
 

jalbert

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Louisville, KY
I had to shape fossilized dinosaur bone on the lathe once. I used a diamond cut off wheel in a dremel to hog off the material and to the shaping. That worked pretty well for me.
 
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“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows, in the end, the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”

― Theodore Roosevelt
WOW - I've always thought that Teddy was a kind of cool guy, but - what a great quote!

Also - Ken - we have a member here who does pens from REAL stone. Might want to look him up and see if there are any learnings from him. If memory serves me correctly (sometimes it doesn't :oops:) he is a wee bit secretive on his methodology. But perhaps worth a try. That stuff looks cool enough that if there were a way ....
 

KenB259

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Well I decided to pursue this a little further. I managed to get it round by sanding with 80 grit sandpaper. It’s never going to turn out though because the hole was not very straight going through the blank. That wouldn’t be a problem in most any other material because the lathe tool would hit the high spots and it would even out, the closer you get to center. That’s not the case when you’re trying to remove stock with sandpaper. So again, I think I’ll quietly put this one to bed or perhaps throw it off a cliff. Here’s a couple of pics.
IMG_2054.JPG
IMG_2057.JPG



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Jans husband

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Doncaster England
Can't praise you enough for your efforts on this blank. Admire your persistence.

Just a thought--If it won't make a pen, is it long enough to attach to a turned piece of wood for your worktop as the base for a paper towel or similar kitchen item?

At least it would match!

Thanks for your effort and progress report.

Mike
 

KenB259

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Can't praise you enough for your efforts on this blank. Admire your persistence.

Just a thought--If it won't make a pen, is it long enough to attach to a turned piece of wood for your worktop as the base for a paper towel or similar kitchen item?

At least it would match!

Thanks for your effort and progress report.

Mike

It’s rather small. I ordered this as a small sample. It’s different than our actual counter. Good ideas though.


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howsitwork

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Ken

I admire your persistence.

Only idea I’ve got is to bring it off with a tool holder mounted grinding wheel. You finish off carbide tools with at way but that wouldn’t correct any wandering of the drill in the blank.

It also has several drawbacks and safety issues with dust, abrasive grit all over you and the lathe. Explosions of grinding wheel if you get enthusiastic ( and cuts of 0.5 mm are considered adventurous in grinding ), Doing it offhand is NOT recommended .

Grinding wheel runs against the direction; of lathe rotation to maximise surface speed .

heres one example
.
 

KenB259

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Michigan
Ken

I admire your persistence.

Only idea I’ve got is to bring it off with a tool holder mounted grinding wheel. You finish off carbid tools with at way but that wouldn’t correct any wandering of the drill in the blank.

It also has several drawbacks and safety issues with dust, abrasive grit all over you and the lathe. Explosions of grinding wheel if you get enthusiastic ( and cuts of 0.5 mm are considered adventurous in grinding ), Doing it offhand is NOT recommended .

Grinding wheel runs against the direction; of lathe rotation to maximise surface speed .

heres one example
.

I did think about doing this way. Probably going in the back burner for now.


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spindlecraft

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This may be a stupid / dangerous suggestion - but you may want to give a metal file a try. I’ve used a metal file to grind down some aluminum on my lathe before - and it might just be the happy medium you need between a tool and an abrasive that takes a decent amount of material off. Either way, good effort!
 

Roger Wilco

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Oh MAN I would love to see that turned into a finished pen! I heard that negative rake carbide cutters from Easy Wood Tools should make it easier to turn hard/brittle materials, but this stuff is a new ballgame and may not work. I also heard that you don't have to purchase an entirely new tool as just the cutters fit several heads.
 

KenB259

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Oh MAN I would love to see that turned into a finished pen! I heard that negative rake carbide cutters from Easy Wood Tools should make it easier to turn hard/brittle materials, but this stuff is a new ballgame and may not work. I also heard that you don't have to purchase an entirely new tool as just the cutters fit several heads.

I think this material would require a metal lathe and probably diamond cutters, neither of which I have.


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