Inspired by the Olympic Flag with the 5 interlocking rings, this pen is flat out awesome!! It was a great team effort to make a unique and awesome pen blank!! Thanks to Meg for coming up with the slotted ribbon idea, and thank you to everyone at the live stream who helped figure out how to make it work!
If you’d like to join in the fun during the live streams, make sure to head over to my Twitch channel and follow me there to get notifications when I go live. As of now, I am doing live streams every Wednesday at 2PM Pacific time. Hope to see you there!!
Tools & Supplies Used
The ribbons were poured in an HDPE mold measuring 3″ x 5″, and the final pen blank was poured in a 1″ x 6″ HDPE mold. The ribbons were cut to 1″ wide by 1.75″ long strips that were drum sanded to 1/16″ thick. Below I have listed direct links to the materials and equipment used to prepare the blank:
- Dremel Rotary Tool
- Plastic Cutting Wheel For Dremel
- Smooth HDPE Sheets for Molds
- Alumilite White Resin for Ribbons
- Alumilite Clear For the Blank
- Alumilite Dyes
- Scale to Measure Alumilite
- CA Technologies Pressure Pot
- Roatary Cutter “Pizza Wheel Cutter”
- Self Healing Cutting Mat
- Super Max Drum Sander
I turned the blank on my Comet II lathe, and I use Thompson Lathe Tools gouges to shape my blanks. I’m using “between center bushings” rather than a pen mandrel to turn my pens, and I find that it is the most accurate way to turn them. This method requires between center bushings or adapters, a 60 degree dead center for the headstock that drives the blank, and a 60 degree live center in the tailstock.
I have a 6 step finishing process for Alumilite blanks that includes two grits of sandpaper, 2 grits of polishing papers, and two buffing wheels. This method is the fastest and most reliable method of obtaining a scratch free finish on Alumilite blanks that I have found. Check out the my video and post that covers the technique with links to all the sanding and polishing products I use. I used a Sierra style ballpoint twist pen kit to mount the blank on. Below I have listed the turning tools as described above: