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pnemox

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Jul 2, 2019
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I was in the shop today helping the kiddo make some pens and had some inspiration to do something different myself. I had been holding onto a piece of stingray leather to make a knife sheath inlay but never got around to it in the past 10 years. Well I decided to wrap it around a brass tube and see where things would go. Took a lot of fighting but I finally landed the fish and got it to stay put. Let me know what you think.20190719_004118.jpg20190719_004205.jpg20190719_004228.jpg20190719_004247.jpg20190719_004307.jpg
 
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pnemox

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Kinda think it belongs on a nice fountain pen but I guess it's for a different type of hunter. Never tried a fountain pen yet.... still have some leather left.... need to check piggy bank for more kit money.
 

Sly Dog

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I’ve never seen stingray leather, no less a pen blank made from it, but the pattern of the cells (is that what they are?) is beautiful! Very unusual and unique.
 

pnemox

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Thank you. Stingray was traditionally used under the wrappings of Japanese katana and wakizashi swords due to the rough bumpy texture. This one was black on the outside and when you sand through you see the white inside of the bumps. It took over 40 layers of CA and repeated sanding to produce a shiny solid surface.
 

magpens

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Coquitlam, BC, Canada
I really like that result (except perhaps for the "seam", but there is no way to avoid that, I guess) !! . I had never seen stingray leather before either.
It does have a very interesting "cellular" appearance which seems to be very appropriate on a pen.

Well done !!! . Very unique !!!

BTW .... I am puzzled as to why I never saw this yesterday after you posted. . I was up quite late and should have seen it .... oh, well !
 

alanemorrison

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Jan 15, 2019
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N Ireland
I like the look of the leather body a lot.
I suppose the purist in me would prefer a fishing rod clip and not a rifle, or maybe that's the way that you hunt stingrays over there.
Alan
 

MRDucks2

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Jul 17, 2017
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Franklin, IN
Very nice. I like it. At the seam, did you maintain the natural coloring of the leather or did you have to fill/color? Knowing you can sand the regular portion to expose more white is great to know. Thanks.


Sent from my iPhone using Penturners.org mobile app
 

mark james

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Sep 6, 2012
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Medina, Ohio
Very different. As a SCUBA diver I appreciate it's uniqueness. In the Cayman Islands (as well as Florida) they are culling invasive green iguanas to keep the population in check. These also have a beautiful skin that may look appealing on a pen blank.

Very nice.
 

pshrynk

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Dec 6, 2017
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Lake City, Minnesota
I was thinking that one of the Fisherman's pens from PSI would be a good choice as well. How thick is the leather before turning? Great looking pen.
 

Kenny Durrant

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Very Nice. I've thought about trying different leathers and didn't have an idea on how to approach the seam. My doctor has a pair of stingray boots that look awesome. The boots are black except for a white pattern right in the middle. He said that was because that particular spot doesn't take any dye. He then showed me his matching wallet with the same spot of white. As asked before did you have to thin the leather or did you use it as is? I've cast several snake skins and thought about trying leather the same way. The pictures you have is that a C.A. finish or something different? Thanks for sharing and your feed back.
 

pnemox

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I agree with the seam. In person it does blend together with the design but I'm going to work on a few ideas to minimize it. There actually isn't much gap there but the ends were lower than the rest and did not get sanded to reveal the white spots. The only fill I did was with crystal clear thin CA. This was the only thing I used in addition to the leather. The leather has a thickness similar to 7-8 oz cow leather. Probably 40% of that is the nodules. Not much room for error when sanding. I didn't reduce this thickness any before sanding. Also, I was very careful this first time and only sanded on the lathe - no cutting.

At the time I only had slimline and bolt action kits in the shop and there is no way this would wrap around a slimline. In fact, it started cracking when putting it on the bolt action kit cylinder. I think the fishing rod clip is also a good idea. I'm going to look into iguana skin but most places are just selling "lizard" skin and don't specify the species. I do have a few exotic pieces ordered and hope to share them in new work.

Kenny - You're right. There is a white diamond in the center of each ray skin. However this is much thicker and bends even less than the rest. It would be very difficult to use this part on a tight radius and make it blend together. With normal leather work I always center it for appearance.

index.jpg


Thanks again for the feedback and let me know if I missed any questions.

P.S. If anyone is interested, I went ahead and added this pen to my shop in the signature link below.
 

exoticwo

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Kinda think it belongs on a nice fountain pen but I guess it's for a different type of hunter. Never tried a fountain pen yet.... still have some leather left.... need to check piggy bank for more kit money.
looks really cool! Perhaps you could try it on a nice, stylish Rollerball since you haven't used a Fountain before.
 

pnemox

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I just ordered a few Artisan Jr. Statesman II fountain pens in rhodium and black titanium. They seem to be good kits. Wish I saw that tip about trying rollerballs first. I'll make sure to do my homework.
 

Icabodcam

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Jun 15, 2019
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North Carolina
I've been looking for some shagreen for a book binding that I want to do. That coloration is really beautiful. I assume some of the ca build added to the darker coloration? Nice job.
 

John Eldeen

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Apr 3, 2019
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Sacramento, CA
That is beautiful pen.. The seam does take away from it a little bit. Just to be clear with absolutely 0 experience with leather of any kind I would be curious if in some way you could stitch the seam together in someway making it a design element and possibly even helping to hold it in place as the glue set.
 

Curly

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Saskatoon SK., Canada.
You did a beautiful job on the blank.

I had a thought. :eek: Could the skin be cut/edge sanded straight so it could be butted to a strip of another material? Hard blue plastic for instance would make it into a thin blue line pen. Or if you were to make strips and alternate between wood and the ray skin you would have a segmented look.
 

Woodchipper

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Mar 15, 2017
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Cleveland, TN
Rod building has a way to integrate the seams with minimal visibility. For snake skins, the skin is overlapped and a sharp Xacto knife is drawn down the overlap. This matches the two ends. Hope this helps if the future for pens.
 

pnemox

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Jul 2, 2019
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Location
Georgia
The CA was clear but I made sure the brass rod was colored black underneath. Most of the black is just part of the ray skin at a lower height that didn't get sanded down. I'll have to look into doing stitches to see if that would work. For this it would have to be thick black nylon because it takes a lot of force to stretch the skin.

I overlapped the skin and then cut with a razor blade to a very close fit. The nodules would fall off if you cut at too much of an angle. Cutting with a razor blade is very difficult with this stuff. Almost like hard plastic beads. Interesting idea about using strips with other materials
 
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