Which kind of kits do you prefer to turn?

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  • Ornate Pen Kit Designs

    Votes: 17 13.5%
  • Simple Pen Kit Designs

    Votes: 37 29.4%
  • Slim Size Pen Kits

    Votes: 30 23.8%
  • Medium Size Pen Kits

    Votes: 60 47.6%
  • Large Size Pen Kits

    Votes: 38 30.2%
  • Extra Large Size Pen Kits

    Votes: 14 11.1%
  • Single Tube Kits

    Votes: 71 56.3%
  • Double Tube Kits

    Votes: 58 46.0%
  • Rollerball Pens

    Votes: 77 61.1%
  • Fountain Pens

    Votes: 50 39.7%
  • Click Ballpoints

    Votes: 51 40.5%
  • Twist Ballpoints

    Votes: 65 51.6%
  • Click Pencils

    Votes: 20 15.9%
  • Twist Pencils

    Votes: 6 4.8%
  • Workshop Pencils

    Votes: 9 7.1%
  • Bespoke Pens

    Votes: 16 12.7%
  • Custom Design Pens

    Votes: 17 13.5%
  • Kit-less Pens

    Votes: 17 13.5%
  • Letter Openers

    Votes: 10 7.9%
  • Key Rings / Chains

    Votes: 22 17.5%
  • Flashlights / Laser / LED

    Votes: 4 3.2%
  • Knives

    Votes: 11 8.7%
  • Rings

    Votes: 14 11.1%
  • Bangles

    Votes: 1 0.8%
  • Jewelry

    Votes: 5 4.0%
  • Salt or Pepper Mills

    Votes: 19 15.1%
  • Bottle Stoppers

    Votes: 39 31.0%
  • Kitchen Items

    Votes: 20 15.9%
  • Stylus Items

    Votes: 5 4.0%
  • Shavers and related

    Votes: 17 13.5%
  • What else do you like to turn? –> Please Post Below

    Votes: 4 3.2%
  • Clocks

    Votes: 3 2.4%
  • Ornaments

    Votes: 19 15.1%
  • Bird House Ornaments

    Votes: 6 4.8%
  • Themed Kits

    Votes: 6 4.8%

  • Total voters
    126

Wayne

IAP Library Manager
Staff member
Joined
Dec 14, 2006
Messages
554
Location
East Troy, Wisconsin, USA.

NOTICE: IF YOU ADD OR CHANGE A VOTE YOU MUST RE-ENTER ALL PREVIOUS VOTES!

Many members ask the simple question, Which kits do members prefer to turn?

Here are some things you might consider, or ask others for their preferences.

• This Poll is not meant to encourage you to turn what others turn but,​
• What are the kits our members like to turn?​
• Was it chosen because they are a beginner?​
• As ones turning experience improves, the kit choices will also change.​
• Are the kits determined by personal preference?​
• Are the kits determined by what one sells best?​
• Are the kits chosen based on what your friends like, gifting?​
• Are the kits chosen based on a requirement?​
• Are the kits chosen based on price?​
• Possibly, the kits chosen are based on comfort level?​
• Possibly, the kits chosen by someone based on wanting to challenge themselves?​
• It may be that the kit is outstanding?​
• Maybe they just want to impress others of there talent?​
• Kits are often chosen based on that special blank .​

So, what have I missed here?

I am sure there are many other items. Please add those missing from the poll in your post below, that you may turn.

Let's hear some of the reasons for your preferences; challenges, failures, success and tips.

Take a look and vote in the Prefered Pen Suppliers Poll. ->
 
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jttheclockman

Member
Joined
Feb 22, 2005
Messages
15,704
Location
NJ, USA.
I voted and as far as other things go I like to make Birdhouse ornaments as well as clocks. Eventually would like to do more clock designs. I follow John Lucas as one of my turner mentors and he does some great clock work. Also have many other birdhouse ornament designs I want to try. Want to add some segmenting in them.

As far as pen making goes, no rhyme or reason for my selections which are broad based. I have learned from years experience that the blanks I make dictate which kit I choose. Have no preference one or two tubes or ballpoint or rollerball. I do not do fountains or kitless. So most everything else is on the table. I believe a one tube kit is best for newbies and the more you get into penturning, step up in class of kits is a good lesson. Try a few and see how you like them and go from there.
 
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1080Wayne

Member
Joined
Feb 5, 2006
Messages
3,078
Location
Brownfield, Alberta, Canada.
Voted for most of the things I make . That definitely does not include ornate pens , themed pens and extra large pens .

Scope of products made has expanded over the years in two ways . The initial change was to make larger items , such as S&P shakers and pepper mills , because they make better use of some large grain features . I regretted having cut up some of the wood purchased years ago into pen blanks . Other products in this category include bud vases/candle holders , oil lamps , bells , boxes , potpourri dishes .

Then , I ended up with all of these small pieces which were much too nice to throw away . That led to pill boxes , mirror compacts , stylii , key chains , napkin rings , fridge magnets , pendants , ear rings and bookmarks . However , I have absolutely made a firm decision to not save anything smaller than a 1/2 inch cube , or 3/4 inch diameter if flat and less than 50 thou thick .

A significant part of the overall change process was the gradual development of an artistic eye , and the ability to read (sometimes) the interior of a piece of wood by looking at the exterior .

Some of the things I make are more challenging than others . That didn`t enter into the production decision , but I do have a list of recycleable materials to make into some of the aforementioned items which will present challenges .
 

walshjp17

Member
Joined
Jul 29, 2012
Messages
3,222
Location
Weddington, NC
In addition to most of the styles listed (ornate - AKA toys, IMHO - is not one of the styles I am interested in) I do like to make boxes and other small turnings.
 

Wayne

IAP Library Manager
Staff member
Joined
Dec 14, 2006
Messages
554
Location
East Troy, Wisconsin, USA.

NOTICE: IF YOU ADD OR CHANGE A VOTE YOU MUST RE-ENTER ALL PREVIOUS VOTES!


Thanks John Wayne!
Great description of thoughts, ideas and suggestions.
 

studioseven

Member
Joined
May 6, 2014
Messages
704
Location
Wisconsin
I turn just about everything however I'm not a big fan of the full size majestic and similar sized kits. They just seem to large for most hands, especially for the ladies. I also haven't had much luck selling them. I do like the Majestic Jr's, Nouveau Sceptre's and Jr Gent's. Even these are too large for most girls. PSI sells a princess kit and the Faith, Hope, Love kit that obviously is designed for the ladies. Unfortunateley, too many times I have observed a potential buyer pick one up to test but put it down because of its size. I wish there were more mid sized double tubed kits designed for the ladies. Something around the size of the fillibella or the patrizio. Sorry for wandering off track for the subject of this post.

Seven
 

greenacres2

Member
Joined
May 2, 2017
Messages
1,402
Location
Northwest IN
I voted, but in the last 5 or 6 months i've been turning mostly bowls, and a few lidded boxes. Really like segmenting bowls--the segments are a size i can work with as opposed to segmenting pens!!
earl
 

Wayne

IAP Library Manager
Staff member
Joined
Dec 14, 2006
Messages
554
Location
East Troy, Wisconsin, USA.
I turn just about everything however I'm not a big fan of the full size majestic and similar sized kits. They just seem to large for most hands, especially for the ladies. I also haven't had much luck selling them. I do like the Majestic Jr's, Nouveau Sceptre's and Jr Gent's. Even these are too large for most girls. PSI sells a princess kit and the Faith, Hope, Love kit that obviously is designed for the ladies. Unfortunateley, too many times I have observed a potential buyer pick one up to test but put it down because of its size. I wish there were more mid sized double tubed kits designed for the ladies. Something around the size of the fillibella or the patrizio. Sorry for wandering off track for the subject of this post.

Seven

Seven,

Great feedback. It's good to hear what you say and it supports a valid concern. This is what I like hearing from this poll.
Thanks,
 
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penicillin

Member
Joined
Feb 27, 2019
Messages
639
Comments about the Survey Design:
  • The initial question asking "Which kind of kits do you prefer to turn?" is open to interpretation. Do you mean "Which kits give you the most pleasure to turn?" or "Which kits do you turn most often?" or some other meaning? Some people in our local club turn hundreds of Slimline-type kits (Funline) every month for our club's volunteer program for military and veterans. Do they "prefer" to turn those? I don't know. Some people "prefer" to turn many of certain pen types because that's what sells. Do they "prefer" them as in "have the most fun making them"? I don't know.
  • Many of the types mentioned in the list overlap, but we have no instructions like "Check all that apply". For example, a Slimline pen is a Slim Size Pen Kit, a Double Tube Pen Kit, and a Twist Ballpoint, but we do not know how to respond. If you do Bird House Ornaments, do you also check the Ornaments box?
  • Some of the offered choices are not defined. What is an Ornate Pen Kit Design? What is the difference between a Bespoke Pen and a Custom Design Pen? What is a Themed Kit? etc.
  • Kitchen Items is a broad term - It could mean all those gadgets where people turn the handles - pizza cutters, ice cream scoops, bar tools, etc. It could also include bottle openers, which come in "handle" types and also "bottle stopper" types ... but then Bottle Stoppers has its own category. Where do "rolling pins" fit in?
Comments about how I responded:
  • If I made a pen kit that fits more than one box, I checked all that apply. If there is overlap such as for a Slimline, I checked all three: Slim Size, Double Tube, and Twist Ballpoints.
  • If I ever made a pen of a given type, I checked the box or all related boxes for that kit. I can't say whether I preferred it more than another kit. I enjoy making them all, except for the ones that I accidentally damaged or ruined.
About the Pens I Turn:
  • I turn pens for gifts, for family, and for my own personal use.
  • Because they are gifts, I generally buy less expensive kits, but not the cheapest ones.
  • I buy kits mostly from the local Rockler store to save on shipping, or from Penn State when I have enough to order that justifies expensive shipping costs, when I can't find what I need at Rockler.
  • I buy kits that match the recipient - a dog pen for the veterinarian, a Celtic pen for a family member who is proud of her Irish heritage, a dragon pen for a young family member who was into dragons, Faith Hope Love kits for religious people, Breast Cancer Awareness pens for those who are struggling with that illness, and a few "artistic" pens for special gifts. I also use a lot of medium-size, relatively inexpensive Manhattan/Gatsby/etc. kits. They make beautiful gifts, but for them it is more about the pen blank than the particular kit.
  • I choose pen blanks that match the story - Bethlehem or Holy Land wood for the religious pens, pink acrylic for the breast cancer pens, Irish bog oak for the Celtic pens, etc.
  • I buy kits to be used for actual writing, not display only. Those are generally slim or medium pens, the ones that fit most people's hands. I shape pens to be comfortable for writing, not art. Most of my pens are more cylindrical than what my friends make. That's so they can be used as practical pens.
  • For myself, I like Penn State's Slimline Pro and EDC kits - they are "right size" for my hand. I have Slimline Pro pen and pencil sets at my desk, in the shop, and in my laptop bag. I use both the pen and pencil parts of those kits. I like them because they are right-sized for writing.
I also turn bowls, rolling pins, and whatever objects I need for other woodworking projects.
 
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