In Issue #15 (Fall 2007) of Woodturning Design, I described how to make a simple wooden pen press. The press was easy to make, could be adjusted quickly to accommodate different sizes of pens, delivered a controlled positive pressure, and cost almost nothing to make. Most of all, it uses the equipment available and doesn’t require purchasing another $40.00 gadget.
I usually make a small production run of at least twenty pens at a time. Unfortunately, the small tip (ink end) digs into the surface when pressing the brass tip into the bottom section of the turned wooden pen blank with the press. This is good and bad. It is easy on the small brass tip, but after pressing in a few dozen tips, the pressing face often needs to be resurfaced. This is easy enough to do, and if you use the pressing surface in the headstock of the lathe, all you need to do is move the tool rest into position, plug in the lathe, and resurface the end with a small gouge. One small improvement, however, eliminates this problem and makes the device work better.
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