One of the more enduring quests by woodturners, is the pursuit of an ideal pen finish. A perfect finish would supply exceptional sturdiness and visible clarity, with a deep, rich “wet” look. Although this is a tall order for any pen finish to deliver, cautious choice of the pen clean materials, coupled with advanced finishing protocols, can deliver a near perfect pen finish. Plastic and stabilized wooden blanks offer a superb option for pen turners looking for to create durable high gloss finishes for his or her hand turned writing pens.
One of the challenging features of making a durable and glossy pen end, is the everyday surroundings pens are subjected to in use. Moving in and out of pockets, purses and desk drawers, coupled with the natural oils and sweat from our arms, makes it powerful for a lot of finishes to retain their shiny finish. In addition, some hardwoods are considerably less dense than others, allowing the barrels on softer hardwoods to be simply damaged.
Denser native woods and most exotics are a better option in lots of cases for a highly durable pen barrel. However, softer hardwoods can be used with equal success if the blank has been stabilized with thin acrylics, or penetscore epoxies prior to turning on the lathe. These “stabilized” pen blanks are a superb selection for wooden writing pens. Stabilized pen blanks offer higher hardness and sturdiness of the barrel surface vs. using natural timbers.
Various Materials Pen Blanks
Different supplies like plastics, acrylics, stabilized exotic and native woods, horn, antler, fossilised Ivory, forged acrylics and related materials, can easily produce a shiny lustre when used for pen barrels. Some supplies, each natural and man made may be polished to a higher lustre than others. For instance, plastics could be easily polished to 12000-grit, producing a visually gorgeous, deep wet look in the barrel surface.
Nevertheless, pure timbers don’t produce the identical degree of lustre as plastics, even when sanded to the identical abrasive level. Stabilized pen blanks typically produce a higher lustre than the same timber with out stabilization. This is because the acrylics and epoxies used in the stabilization process, enable the barrels to be polished to a higher level than untreated wood blanks.
Advanced Abrasive and Finishing Protocols
In addition to the careful selection of the barrel materials, the applying of advanced abrasive and finishing protocols can go a long method toward offering durable and shiny pen finishes. Correct surface preparation, together with sanding and polishing of the barrel surface previous to applying the desired finish, will permit the end to magnify the underlying perfected surface. This will produce a much higher perceived gloss stage on the barrel surface.
High efficiency cloth Mica Powder backed abrasives are available that will produce a 12000-grit surface. At this ultra high stage, the human eye cannot see the surface scratch sample, resulting in an exceptionally high gloss degree on the surface. Careful selection of the barrel finish may also affect the general lustre and longevity of the finish.
Types of Finishes for Stabilized Pen Blanks
Waxes are among the best of all finishes to use, however might not final long in regular use on a writing pen. Shellac friction polishes provide higher overall durability than waxes and are additionally simple to apply. Lacquers offer still greater sturdiness, but require a number of coats and prolonged drying times between coats. Cyanoacrylate Esters (CA or Super Glue) and binary Epoxies supply extreme sturdiness, however require advanced application protocols. For this reason and others plastics are gaining in popularity, particularly when an ultra-high gloss lustre is desired.