In this video I prepare some blanks for some Barons for glue up.

The way I prepare my pen blanks is I always try to match the grain of the pens when I’m assembling my pens. I go through a few steps prior to cutting and drilling the pen blanks.

1. I mark the blanks where the cuts are to be made on the band saw (5 - 10mm longer than the brass tube length).

2. I mark a line to join the 2 halves of the blank so that when I put it on the lathe I can keep them in order

3. I mark the type of pen that I am drilling and gluing the blank for.

4. I mark the short and the long side of the blank

5. I give each pen blank a unique number so the two halve can be easily identified in the rare occasion I drop my draw of pen blanks and all the blanks get mixed up.

6. I then use the band saw to cut the blanks to the appropriate length.

Keeping the grain matched on the assembled pen is very important because it shows that you have taken the time and put the effort in to create a fine writing instrument. The gallery owners and especially the jewellers always comment on how my pens look like they have come from a single piece of wood. My reply is always “it looks like it came from a single piece of wood because it did come from a single piece.”

A few second invested prior to cutting and turning will pay dividends on your hand made fine writing instrument.