1/9/2017 11:00:00 AM
As you all (the 6 or 7 of you who still read me, that is) know, I’ve gotten into woodworking recently. It’s been something I’ve always wanted to do and now that I have a house with an actual workshop in the back, I’ve been able to fulfill that dream.
Now that I have a lathe, I can turn objects and some of those happen to be pens. My girls & I made a few pens over the past few days and of course I showed them off on Twitter and Facebook.
Then the orders started coming in.
I wasn’t expecting that, but I enjoy making them and so I’m going to open up the offer here as well as I’d like to get as many orders in place as I can before I start buying more materials. Bulk is costly up front, but cheaper in the long run. Unless you don’t use it all, then… well… My plan is to put up the basic price sheet here and hopefully generate a few more orders before I start.
So, take a look at the pens here. All these pens were slimline style, black ink, twist-operation with gunmetal hardware. The ink is standard cartridges like you find here. I can, of course, get any other colors of hardware like brass, silver, titanium, etc. (some at an extra cost. Rhodium for example!)
From left to right
The first pen was mostly turned by my eldest daughter. We picked a random blank of wood and it turned out amazing. It’s the most basic pen and it runs $25.
The second pen is purpleheart with a maple/wenge laminate stripe. I can do laminate stripes of all sorts of woods & colors. Multiple bands can be added to a pen – $30
The third one is an exotic. This one happens to be snakewood and is one of the more expensive woods you will find. These would run $35-$40 (starting) depending on the wood. I can do amazing burl wood pens, but sometimes those blanks, like Amboyna Burl, can run $80. They’re drop-dead sexy though.
Finally, I have a serpentine pen. Serpentines are created by cutting up a blank, adding in thin veneers, then gluing them back together. They start like this
And end up like the pen you see on the right. You’re never really 100% sure what you’re going to get when the pen is turn, but it comes out as awesome swirls. I’m going to attempt different angles and thicknesses too. These requires a lot of work as it’s a minimum of 4 cut & glue-ups as well as cutting the veneers from the stock I have. These are $50, but are unique as all get out.
I’m also thinking about doing a limited edition (aka too much work to do all the time) Pen, Pencil, and 1911 Grip set, all from the same billet of wood, which would make a really, really nifty set. I’ve not thought of a price on that yet but if there’s interest, I can put that in the hopper.
If you’re interested in any of these pens or have questions, please email me at robb at robballen.com.