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Issues with my first attempt at Pens (Read 258 times)
 
Donald Jordan
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Issues with my first attempt at Pens
Aug 28th, 2017 at 7:07am
 
I was hoping I could get some advice. I completed my first set of pens and have some ... errors... I had gauged the depth of the of the refill and twist mechanism and was pressing the twist mechanism into the bottom portion of the pen, when it went further into the brass than I intended. Now the tip of the refill extends past the end of the pen when retracted.
Is there a way to extract this piece and try again?
On a minor note, the pens also travel past the stopping points of the twist actions... is this just a cheaper quality kit problem?

Thanks!
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Ed Weber
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Re: Issues with my first attempt at Pens
Reply #1 - Aug 28th, 2017 at 8:31am
 
I'm guessing you're talking about a 7mm twist pen of some type.
You can sometimes remove the transmission and re=insert it. Since it is a press fit, it might not be as tight of a fit since the brass tube has already been stretched.
As to the moving past the stopping point, it could be a bad transmission, yes some are better than others.
you definitely learned a few essential lessons.
1. Always test the transmission before installing it
2. Press the transmission in 90 percent of the way and test fit the refill for the amount of protrusion. You can always push it in a further but removing it is a pain.
You can get spare transmissions and just about any other individual pen part at PSI and other vendors. There is also a pen/pencil disassembly kit, if you plan on turning many pens it can be helpful.
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Donald Jordan
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Re: Issues with my first attempt at Pens
Reply #2 - Aug 28th, 2017 at 10:11am
 
Ed,

Thanks for the reply.. learned more than I thought I would. Thumbs Up
Yes they are 7mm twist pen.
As I was pressing the transmission would advance in spurts, not a slide... if that makes sense..
I can feel the transmission stop, if I turn lightly, I "think" the upper brass is just keeps on going...

I got them from Penn State.. nice site.
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« Last Edit: Aug 28th, 2017 at 10:12am by Donald Jordan »  
 
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Ed Weber
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Re: Issues with my first attempt at Pens
Reply #3 - Aug 28th, 2017 at 10:26am
 
Having a few extra transmissions around is always a good idea.
They are "supposed" to have a small detent in the fully open or writing position. The trans should get a little tighter to turn toward fully open, then sort of settle into place. This way it doesn't retract when in use.
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Arlin Eastman
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Re: Issues with my first attempt at Pens
Reply #4 - Aug 28th, 2017 at 10:58am
 
Donald

When pushing in the transmission I take out any burrs in the inside of the brass first which would cause the transmission to go it roughly or not at all.

Also the transmission has a slight detent just after the brass.  I push it in to the brass only and put the refill in and see how much further I need to go and take out the refill and push in a little more until it is perfect.

Do not worry it takes time to get the pens perfect and asking a lot of questions and watching DVDs or YouTube will help a lot.

I have probably done over 400 pens myself and helped the vets to another 1600 more.


O and one more thing

make sure when you turn down the blank you do not go all the way to the bushing since you still have to sand it.  I would leave a fingernails width left and sand gently from there.  Also now I no longer use the bushings as a drop dead size.  I measure the parts that are inserted into the brass with a digital caliper to measure the parts and the wood to get an exact fit.  It takes a little more time but it is perfect everytime.
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Louie Powell
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Re: Issues with my first attempt at Pens
Reply #5 - Aug 28th, 2017 at 11:23am
 
Donald

There is a simple way to remove a transmission that has been inserted too far into a barrel.  It requires a small scrap of wood, and a couple of washers.  The transmission must fit through the hole in the washers, but the hole diameter must be smaller than the diameter of the barrel.

Drill a hole in the scrap of wood that is very slightly larger than the OD of the transmission.  Then, cut the block to lengthwise from one edge into the hole - so that you now have a block of wood with a hole, and with a saw kerf all the way into the hole.

Lightly grip the block of wood in a bench vise with the hole vertical and the saw kerf parallel to the jaws of the vise.  Insert the transmission through the two washers, and then into the hole in the block of wood.  Continue pressing the transmission into the hole until the spacing between the washers is barely enough to allow you to slip a flat-blade screwdriver into the gap.  Then, tighten the vise to squeeze the block of wood, closing the saw kerf, and forcing the hole in the wood to squeeze down on the transmission.  Essentially, at this point the block of wood is a collett that is gripping the transmission evenly around its circumference.  Next, slip the blades of two screwdrivers between the washers, pointing toward the transmission from opposite sides.  Finally, gently twist the two screwdrivers - as the blades rotate, they will force the washers apart, and that in turn will force the barrel up and off of the transmission.
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Louie
 
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Donald Jordan
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Re: Issues with my first attempt at Pens
Reply #6 - Aug 28th, 2017 at 12:04pm
 
Gentlemen,
Thank you for the responses the the tips. I will add them to my future attempts!

Louie, Your description for the removal tool is excellent!. I will give that a try!
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Steve Kniffen
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Re: Issues with my first attempt at Pens
Reply #7 - Aug 28th, 2017 at 5:32pm
 
One more tip for assembly. Before I turned my first pen, my Woodcraft instructor told me that for a 7mm pen using a Cross-style refill I should push the transmission into the tube until the length from the bottom of the nib to the top of the transmission is 10.1 cm.  I like numbers so that made sense to me and it's worked for every pen of this style that I've turned.
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Ed Weber
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Re: Issues with my first attempt at Pens
Reply #8 - Aug 28th, 2017 at 8:46pm
 
Steve Kniffen wrote on Aug 28th, 2017 at 5:32pm:
for a 7mm pen using a Cross-style refill I should push the transmission into the tube until the length from the bottom of the nib to the top of the transmission is 10.1 cm.


IMO, this may be a good rule of thumb but doesn't count on the "quality" of the refills. I have always found it better to test fit and adjust if necessary.
Also not all 7mm transmissions are exactly the same.
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Arlin Eastman
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Re: Issues with my first attempt at Pens
Reply #9 - Aug 29th, 2017 at 10:14am
 
Steve

There are two things that could go wrong with that.

1.  One is if a person trims the blank to much and goes into the brass
2. If someone is going to make a customized pen.

That is the reason I say to always put the pen refill into the transmission and check it.
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Ed Weber
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Re: Issues with my first attempt at Pens
Reply #10 - Aug 29th, 2017 at 10:37am
 
Arlin Eastman wrote on Aug 29th, 2017 at 10:14am:
Steve

There are two things that could go wrong with that.

1.  One is if a person trims the blank to much and goes into the brass
2. If someone is going to make a customized pen.


The guideline of 10.1 cm that Steve mentioned will remain true no matter what, provided we are still using standard 7mm hardware and a cross refill.

When making a pen, you start with a kit and build the pen around the kit.
You don't/can't change the measurements of the mechanics in the kit.
(You can change dimensions within the overall mechanical measurement but not the overall measurement itself)
The 'kit" must remain the same in order to receive a standard refill (this is a fixed length) and function properly.

1. If you trim the blank too much, you will need to adjust how far you insert the transmission. (obviously not as far) The overall length (10.1cm) needs to remain the same.
2. Making a customized pen beings up many factors but if you're using "standard" 7mm mechanisms/parts the overall function should be the same. The length of the refill and the transmission do not change, which are the determining factors for the length of 10.1cm.


personally, I prefer to physically check mine rather than to solely rely on a measurement which I mentioned in the previous post.
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