Part 3 making a pen series. Prepping the blanks

Part 3 making a pen series. Prepping the blanks

To recap so far, we have chosen to make a ballpoint twist. pen, with gun metal plating out of wood. We have also chosen a cigar style component set. It’s a good start, but now the work begins. The attached picture shows the selected component set that we will turn into a pen by following a few basic steps.

  1. Drill and prep the blank.
  2. Turn the body.
  3. Sand and finish the body.
  4. Assemble the pen.

The material you make the pen out of, wood for this pen, is called a blank. A blank is usually a small rectangle of wood 1X1X6 or there about. The two tubes, in this case, must be glued into the blank. To do this the blank must be cut and drilled.

First, you’ll need to mark the blank where it needs to be cut. To do this you simply lay each tube on the blank and mark the blank to match the length of each tube. Don’t forget to add a ¼ inch for squaring it to the tube, but that comes later. Then cut the blank to size for each tube, you can use any saw to cut them, I use a band saw.

Next you drill a hole through the length of each blank large enough to slide the tubes into the blanks. You don’t want the hole much bigger in diameter than the tube or the glue won’t adhere to both. For the Cigar pen we’re making a 10mm or 25/64 drill bit is what's required. Once drilled test fit your tubes in the blanks before gluing to make sure they’re not to snug of a fit. You don’t want any slop between the hole and the inserted tubes, or you’ll get poor adhesion when you apply the glue to the tubes. Also, you don’t want the fit so snug it wipes all the glue off the tube as it’s being inserted into the hole.

So, the next step is to glue the tubes into the blanks. To accomplish this, you’ll either use a two-part epoxy glue, or a CA (cyanoacrylate) glue. The most widely known name for CA glue is super glue or Krazy glue. Those are brand names for CA glues. Either type of glue will work, and each has pro’s and con’s that go with them. Either glue you choose, keep these rules in mind:

  1. Always have good ventilation. These glues stink, and it’s for a reason.
  2. Always were gloves. Gluing stuff to your fingers is not fun, often painful.
  3. Always use an insertion tool of some kind. I use golf tees, they work great.

Before you apply the glue to the outside of the tubes, use some sandpaper and rough the tubes up a bit, it helps with adhesion of the glue. Only do one tube at a time, these glues work fast and you’ll only have time to do one before the glue starts to dry.

When you’re ready, coat the outside of one of the tubes with glue and insert it into the blank, wipe off the excess glue. Then do the same to the other tube. Leave them to dry overnight to dry and cure if possible, or at least a couple of hours.

Cigar components

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