Pen Sanding and Finishing Process

Buffed with White Diamond compound and ready for assembly.
Buffed with White Diamond compound and ready for assembly.

To get the best finish possible, my pen sanding process includes sanding, polishing, and buffing to remove any tooling marks leaving a glassy smooth pen.

All sanding should be at low speed to reduce heat build up which could cause your blank to melt, or discolor. Always wear personal protection (PPE) equipment while using the lathe. Since I primarily work with resins, I sand wearing with both eye and lung protection. Some woods are irritants and shouldn’t be turned without protection either, you can find a list of hazardous woods at The Wood Database, if interested . I suggest everyone get in the habit of wearing eye and lung protection whenever sanding.

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Shop Notes – 20180812

Shop Notes

  • When mixing materials with your resin that have nooks and crannies, such a gold leaf, mix your resin and hardener first. Once the resin is thoroughly mixed then add your leaf. Materials like gold leaf that can fold and make little pockets of unmixed resin will ruin your blank.
  • When making ribbons with Alumilite use a glass plate or sheet of HDPE that will fit in your pressure pot. The trapped bubbles in these thin pours will expand as the resin warms up while curing, leaving you with a pitted surface.