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Thread: Where to start

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    Default Where to start

    I'm sure that this has been covered before, and if so I would not be offended if the first reply was simply a link to another thread, but I would like to take up pen making as a hobby. It looks like fun and would like to learn how to do it. So my question is, what tools does a person need to take up this hobby? I am not interested in trying to start a business or selling anything. I just want to spend some free time playing with pen making. Thanks.

    Paul

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    Default Re: Where to start

    Paul, I would be glad to help. I will PM you my email address.
    Please visit my store

    Brands we carry: Benu Pen, Conklin, Kaweco, Monteverde, TWSBI - Diamine, J Herbin - Clairefontaine, Rhodia, Whitelines

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    Default Re: Where to start

    I'd also be interested in finding info. I'm looking to start simple; like creating a longer body for a Kaweco Sport section and making threads to fit some spare pen cap, for example.

    Matias

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    Default Re: Where to start

    Good afternoon. I would also over to learn as well. I am not trying to be forward and would appreciate points or sites for review. Many thanks

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    Default Re: Where to start

    I may not be the person indicated for a full answer. You can find hundreds of pen-makers on YouTube, but I was always more interested in the machinists than in the pen-makers.
    You can do it by hand, but lathe-work is essential. A decent knowledge of machining basics is a must: feeds and speeds, cutting angles, material characteristics... A lot can be learned on the interwebs : That lazy machinist, Tubalcain, Keith Fenner and so many more can teach you a lot. But I've learnt the most from doing the work : Put pieces of plastic a lathe and see which speeds and feeds work best, when you need lubrication.
    Make a plan, then find out what you need to do to end up with a usable pen.

    Of course, you can also buy a few kits, and then just turn fitting tubes in interesting materials. Or you can build new bodies for existing sections. For turning tubes, a simple wood-turning lathe will suffice. For cutting threads you'll need dies and taps, or a metal-working lathe with a decent set of gears for thread-cutting. And some way of measuring the threads you want to match.

    A basic grasp of machining is the minimum required, but you learn as you go.

    Cheers

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    Rossler (February 22nd, 2017)

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    Cool Re: Where to start

    Any recommendations for a good value, yet long term, one-for-all lathe?

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    Default Re: Where to start

    I don't make pens but I do use lathe a lot in my restoration.

    I have a Taig II metal lathe that is very solid, yet small, perfect for working with pen parts.
    But unless you go for the full-blown CNC version, you can't cut threads with it, and would have to rely on taps and dies.

    I've read good things about Sherline lathe, the rest of the market is dominated by Chinese made metal lathes under dozens of different "brands".
    - Will
    A new place to shop for restored vintage pens: Redeem Pens

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    SIR (November 16th, 2017)

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    Default Re: Where to start

    and i'll need a swage machine for cap bands etc, right?

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    Default Re: Where to start

    Quote Originally Posted by SIR View Post
    and i'll need a swage machine for cap bands etc, right?
    Not familiar with swage machine

    Here's a shot of my lathe in action, I was reducing the diameter of a section so it'll fit the barrel in the picture:

    - Will
    A new place to shop for restored vintage pens: Redeem Pens

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    Default Re: Where to start

    I have a sieg c3, Chinese lathe but rebranded and it is very good for turning pens and pen parts.
    Is not expansive, it cut threads, and I measured the precision of the chuck at 2/100 mm, which is very good.
    It cost here in Europe about 500 USD.

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    Default Re: Where to start

    Greetings
    Head over and join The International Association of Penturners @ penturners.org. The forum is great with a lot of super talented pen makers. Additionally, they are a great bunch and always willing to share advice and techniques.

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    Default Re: Where to start

    Quote Originally Posted by Penultimate View Post
    Greetings
    Head over and join The International Association of Penturners @ penturners.org. The forum is great with a lot of super talented pen makers. Additionally, they are a great bunch and always willing to share advice and techniques.
    I don't doubt that there are talented woodcraftsmen in that forum, but their emphasize in general are kit pens, which to me isn't the same as actually making a fountain pen.
    - Will
    A new place to shop for restored vintage pens: Redeem Pens

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    Default Re: Where to start

    Penwash
    While there are a lot of pen kit discussions the emphasis is on craftsmanship including kitless/custom pens. If you want to learn how to make kitless pens IAP is an essential resource. The library is full of articles written members on the subject of making kitless pens.

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