Making & Turning My First Segmented Pen

I wanted to try my hand at segmenting, so I put a segmented blank on a simple Wall Street II kit. This process was a lot of fun, even though messy and nerve racking at times.

I started off camera cutting 1/4″ segments from scraps that were too short to do anything with otherwise. I took the segments and started to glue up each segment by using medium CA. I made sure to use plenty of glue which ensured that the segments bonded well to each other. Unfortunately I was foolish and didn’t put gloves on, so I ended up with CA all over my fingers. Lesson learned. After I glued up the segments and eyeballed that the segments were in some sort of alignment, I put the blank in a clamp and let it sit until it dried.

Once the glue dried, I took it to the drill press and drilled a 27/64″ hole through the middle. Because each segment was a different size, I was nervous that I didn’t glue up the blank straight enough, but once I drilled the hole, I realized I had plenty of meat on the blank and it was fine. I glued the tube into the blank, then trimmed the blank to size and flushed up the blank with the tube.  After I flushed up the blank to the tube, I stayed at the sander and rounded over the blank and tried to flush up the segments to each other. This helped to reduce the chance of blow out and this helped immensely.

After preparing the blank, I took the blank to the lathe and got to turning. I made sure to take light passes and this worked well because I didn’t have any catches or blow outs. It took a little longer to turn, but it was worth it in the end since the blank stayed in one piece and turning went smoothly.

To start the finishing process, I applied a thin coat of CA glue to the blank. This sealed each of the segments, so when I sanded, the different colors of the segments didn’t bleed into each other. This worked really well and I was pleased with the result. Once the CA was applied and cured (with activator), I sanded from 200 grit up to 2,000 grit (dry sanding), then I continued with my finishing process by applying some denatured alcohol to clean up the blank.

I started the finishing process by applying once coat of boiled linseed oil on the blank. When that dried, I put my CA finish on the blank, then wet sanded with micro mesh, going from 1,500 grit up to 12,000 grit. I applied two coats of HUT Ultra Gloss Plastic Polish. This allowed the blank to get a nice shine to it and I was pleased with how the bank looked.

I put this segmented blank on a Wall Street II kit because I wanted to show off the blank and not focus on the kit as much. Assembly of the Wall Street II is super simple, which I cover in the video.

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Turning My First Castings

I turned some of my first resin castings into pens that turned out when I didn’t think they were able to be turned.  The resin didn’t fill the tube in molds, so the tubes were exposed.  I did some research and found a shorter blank/body Wall Street II kit, so I took the blanks to the disc sander and sanded them down to the appropriate blank length.  I used the tube from the kit as a reference to get the cast blank the right size.

After getting the blanks to the correct size, I went ahead and mounted them to the mandrel on the lathe.  At this point I was able to turn both blanks.  I knew these blanks had some issues on the surface, so I frequently stopped to check my progress and make sure everything was still workable.

Turning Alumilite resin is a treat because I love how smoothly it comes off the blanks.  Additionally, I purchased an extra set of Wall Street II bushings, which allowed me to turn two blanks at once, so I was able to assemble two pens at the end instead of just one.

Once I turned the blanks down to the diameter if the bushings, I started to sand the blanks.  I dry sand with 220 grit, 400 grit, 1,000 grit, and 2,000 grit.  Normally after I dry sand I start wet sanding with Micro Mesh, but one of the blanks had a small void in it, so I filled the void with CA glue, and dry sanded that blank one more time to make sure the CA was flush with the blank.  It was after I dry sanded the blank with the void for the second time that i went ahead and wet sanded from 1,500 grit, up to 12,000 grit.  This gave the blanks a really nice shine.

I finished the banks after wet sanding with a coat of paste wax and HUT Ultra Gloss Polish.  I used two applications of polish and this really made the blanks look great!

Assembly of the pens went together just like any other Wall Street II kit.  I started by pressing the cap into the body of each pen.  When placing the cap, I made sure that the clip covered the defect on the blank that I mentioned earlier.  No one will see the defect, and it turned out to be a gorgeous pen.  I put the spring on the ink refill, put the refill into the nib of the pen, then threaded the transmission of each pen.  Once I threaded the transmission, I tested said transmission and had an awesome fit and action.  Finally. I pressed the body of each pen onto the nibs, and I had two completed Wall Street II grip pens!

This was an excellent way to use seemingly useless castings and turn them into something special.

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