Turning Pens and Peppermills are projects than in reach of newcomers to turning. Once the basic are learn you can make piece to show off your new skills, and they even make good, unique gifts.
Pen turning is growing in popularity because it is fun, easy and can be done on virtually any size lathe. Another attraction is producing unique gifts for friends or even merchandise for sale. In this story, we will turn a basic pen and look at the necessary tools. This is only the beginning though. Master the basics and the only limiting factor is your imagination. Everything from the materials used to the shape of the pens is open for exploration.
Pen crafting is an enjoyable, rewarding and fun experience. Pen crafting is, however, learned. The process requires practice, patience, and above all a willingness to learn. Learn on less expensive and easier to work with stock such as Black Walnut first. Then make the jump to Harder and more temperamental stock.
Pen Turning can be an exciting and rewarding hobby. Of all of the things that can be made on a lathe, a turned pen is one of the easiest and most attractive products that you can produce. You can turn pens for gifts or to sell for extra money. Recently I gave three pens to my friends and co-workers as I left for a new job. They were touched by the gift, in part because of its beauty, but mostly because it was handmade by me personally for them.
Turning peppermills is one of the more common lathe projects, but one that can be a little intimidating. The truth is, turning peppermills is relatively easy once you understand the basics - and sequence - of the process. What follows is my way of turning peppermills. If the instructions that came with your peppermill mechanism differ, follow them, particularly in regards to dimensions.
Peppermill mechanisms are very simple machines. A long drive-shaft is secured to the head of the peppermill so when turned, it rotates the grinding cutter within the grinder housing at the bottom of the peppermill. While installing this hardware is simple, it is important to be sure it operates freely and that sufficient adjustment is available at the knob to allow the user to set it for a full range of particle sizes.
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