On the live stream, I turned a DiamondCast pen blank. It was one of the blanks from a cutoff box that I purchased from the Mid-Ohio Pen Turner’s Gathering back in September 2019.
Recap of last week: Last week I turned a cigar pencil and dressed it in a Buckeye Nation blank from Divine Island Design. This pencil was a fun turn once I got the bushings oriented correctly. I mentioned that I didn’t like turning cigar-style pens/pencils. This was because it takes me a little bit to make sure I have the bushings oriented correctly, but that is a small issue in the grand scheme of things. Other than that, I love how large the pen/pencil is and the style looks great, too.
This Week: DiamondCast is available at Tim McKenzie’s website, https://www.mckenziepenworks.com. They are also available at Turner’s Warehouse, Classic Nib, a couple other retailer’s over seas, and possibly a couple others I’m unaware of at this point.
TBC Bushings: Turning between centers is how I turned the blank in the live stream. I started by explaining that I was nervous about changing over to TBC bushings because of the cost, but one way to get into TBC bushings is to buy the adapters for mandrel bushings and those will turn mandrel bushings into TBC bushings. My recommendation would be to slowly change over to TBC by buying one or two sets of bushings at a time and switch over gradually. The adapters will go a long way, but start by purchasing the TBC bushings of the pen you turn most, and continue to build your TBC bushing collection one set at a time as funds allow. While bushings don’t cost a lot, they do add up over 15-20+ sets of bushings.
I turned this DiamondCast pen blank between centers at approximately 3,500 RPMs with the TShadow NRS. This tool is becoming one of my favorite tools to turn with in the shop. The turning was pretty uneventful as there were no major catches that impacted the overall appearance of the blank. I did get a small, minor catch at one point, but I was well above the bushings and the catch was able to be turned and sanded away without issue.
After turning, I sanded down to the bushings, then ran through my dry sanding regiment (120 grit through 400 grit) (approximately 500 RPMs). From there, I wet sanded with Micro Mesh (1,500 grit-12,000 grit) (approximately 1,400 RPMs) and finished up the blank with the Novus polishing system. Novus 3 is a heavy scratch remover. Novus 2 is a fine scratch remover, and Novus 1 is a polish.
Assembling the tiny giant was super simple. All that is required for assembly is two presses. The closed end gets pressed into the blank, then the nib/section gets pressed into the other end. Once those two pieces get pressed into the blank, the nib/section gets unscrewed so the ink refill can get put into place and the pen is done as soon as the nib/section gets screwed back onto the pen.
Here is a picture of the finished Tiny Giant:
During this week’s live stream, I got a lot of good interaction with those that tuned in. For that, I wanted to say thank you. It’s a lot of fun to do a live stream when interaction happens naturally and the conversation takes place on a two-way street and isn’t so one-sided.
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Here is the video of the live stream I did last night: