Turning Archive 2005
Dominic Greco in Richboro PA
I know I haven't been around all that much lately. I've been out of the loop a bit since my computer took a nose dive 3 weeks ago. After some surgery, it's now back up and running.
Anyway, I've managed to turn a bunch of pens since the last time I was here. I'm building up my inventory for my yearly Holiday Craft Show at work.
Lately I've been experimenting with lacquer as a finish for pens. Before I started, I asked the good people at Penturner.org a boat load of questions. So I have them to thank for the success of this. Well, after 30 or so pens I think I've just about got the process down now. :>) Here are some pictures of the best ones.
The first pic is of (2) Jr Gents pens the Titanium Roller ball on the left is Cherry Burl and Platinum Fountain pen on the right is Red Malee Burl.
The next is of (5) 10K Roller ball pens
From left to right: Red Malee Burl, Bocote, Cocobolo, Brown Malee, Maple Burl
Theses are Satin Nickle and Satin Gold Plated European pens
From left to right: Figured/Spalted Maple, Spalted Beech, Cherry Burl, Curly Maple, Zircote, Maple Burl, and Bloodwood
From left to right: Cherry Burl, Maple Burl, Desert Ironwood, Figured Maple, Gonsalo Alves, and Redwood Burl
Cigar pens, Chrome
From left to right: Ambrosia Maple, Spalted Beech, Maple Burl, Box Edler Burl, Mesquite, and Figured Walnut
The finish was several coats of PSI's Lacquer Based Sanding Sealer followed by multiple light coats of Deft Spray Lacquer (Satin). After some experimentation, I found that allowing the finish to dry/harden for 4 to 5 days worked best for me. I then wet sanded from 1500 to 12,000 MM, buffed with Griot's Machine Polish, and followed with a coat of Renaissance Wax.
This is definitely a finish suited for production runs. In order for me to make it more economical, I figured that I needed to have batches of (10) to (20) pens. I made a spray rack from a 1x3x24" and some 3" long nails (looks like Uncle Fester's bed from the old "Addamm's Family" TV show). The trick I found was multiple light coats (about 10), and to rotate the blanks 1/4 turn between coats. To make spraying a MUCH more pleasant experience, I modified my spray booth to add filters and a fan.
(BTW, this finish also works great on bottle stoppers. Although, I don't need to sand them with micro mesh. Before sealing, they get sanded to 600 then burnished with shavings. Then they get a couple of coats of lacquer. After the finish hardens, I use automotive polish and wax).
So far it's working out fine. The finish is really going over big with my high-end customers. Since I've adjusted my photo booth and camera to eliminate glare, the pictures really don't show you how shiny and "deep" the finish comes out. IMHO it rivals CA glue for the "WOW" factor.
Thanks for viewing.
See ya around,