I usually discover that for college kids, studying to show is the straightforward half, however developing with venture concepts is restricted to step-by-step demonstrations, lessons, and articles like this one. The place do concepts come from? Generally it is so simple as trying on the objects that encompass you in your desk or workbench. A pencil is a good instance.
Right here, I shall be displaying you the steps to make a pencil field—a playful and helpful venture that makes use of primary spindle-turning strategies. The venture contains two components—the pencil physique and an eraser cap—drilled with two different-sized Forstner bits after which friction-fitted collectively. There isn’t any hollowing by hand, simply drilling, making it manufacturing field. This easy field method is simple to adapt to imitate different cylindrical objects which might be round you on a regular basis: pens, turning instruments, markers, and so on. A little bit of shaping and coloring after turning can simply approximate no matter object you’ve taken as inspiration.
Supplies and Instruments
For illustrating this text, I selected to make use of basswood as a result of I knew it might be straightforward to drill and carve. It’s also comparable in shade to the wooden within the pencil I selected to emulate. Different woods I’ve used embody medium-density hardwoods like poplar, cherry, walnut, and mushy maple, as they’re available and require much less sanding after drilling. Additionally, you will want the next:
• Drill chuck that mounts in your lathe tailstock
• 1″- and three/4″- (25mm- and 19mm-) diameter Forstner bits
• 4-jaw chuck with small jaws
• V-shaped carving gouge
• Paint and metal-colored markers
Planning and Structure
The size for this venture are versatile, relying on the dimensions of pencil you’d like to show. It may be so long as you need (what number of occasions has this pencil been sharpened?), however think about the utmost drilling depth when drilling together with your lathe tailstock. You’ll need the general pencil size to be suitably longer than the inside drilled depth, permitting for a tapered level on one finish and the eraser on the cap finish. For the pencil’s diameter, I counsel 1-3/4″ (4cm). This may depart sufficient wall thickness after the drilling of the inside areas.
You will want two Forstner bits, the bigger being minimally 3/4″ smaller than the most important exterior diameter. The smaller bit needs to be 1/4″ (6mm) smaller than the bigger bit. For example, if my rough-turned cylinder is 1-3/4″ diameter, the bigger gap (drilled within the pencil physique) can be 1″ diameter, and the smaller gap (drilled within the cap finish) can be 3/4″.
With a cylinder rough-turned to roughly 1-3/4″ diameter, lay out the pencil components. Make sure to embody area for a tenon a minimum of 3/4″ lengthy on the pencil cap, which shall be friction-fitted into the opening drilled within the pencil physique. Additionally depart an additional 1/4″ to permit for the width of a parting device. Half the cap from the pencil physique, chopping down solely partway after which ending the lower off the lathe with a handsaw.
Use a middle finder on each items to establish the middle factors, after which punch with an axe. The proper method to make use of a middle finder is to make one line after which flip the middle finder to the alternative aspect and make a second line. This makes up for the thickness of your pencil. Make two strains perpendicular to the primary two in the identical method, and you can see the precise heart.
Drill Pencil Physique
Mount the pencil physique part in a chuck. I all the time use the tailstock to push the piece in and heart it, so I can use two palms on the chuck key to tighten the jaws.
With the bigger drill bit mounted in a drill chuck in your tailstock, drill into the pencil physique. Depart sufficient stable wooden on the finish, so you possibly can flip the pencil level later with out interfering with the drilled cavity. I maintain the drill chuck with my hand to make sure it is not going to spin. Be sure you use sharp bits and withdraw the bit usually to clear the chips. I usually wax the bit with paraffin or beeswax when it will get heat. When you see smoke when drilling, sluggish your lathe velocity and/or get a brand new drill bit.
Push the tailstock cone heart into the drilled gap with solely light stress, and true up the top with a skew, parting device, or spindle gouge.
Flip and Drill Cap
Take away the pencil physique from the chuck and mount the cap clean. Set your caliper to the diameter of the bigger drill bit, and half in to kind a tenon of that diameter.
Security Be aware: When you apply the caliper to the wooden throughout parting, first file and sand off any sharp corners to forestall the caliper from catching within the wooden.
When contemplating tenon size, consider the longer the tenon, the extra wooden contact and friction you’ll have holding the cap onto the physique.
About 3/4″ can be good, however this doesn’t should be an actual dimension.
I first flip a small part on the tailstock finish and check the match within the pencil physique. As soon as the right match is established, you possibly can work your method again to your required tenon size. I additionally depart just a little bulge within the center so I can get a “click on” match.
Press the 2 components collectively. When you see a niche between them, you would possibly want to wash and sq., or undercut, the tenon shoulder earlier than drilling the opening within the eraser-end cap.
Utilizing the smaller of the 2 drill bits, drill into the eraser cap, leaving sufficient stable materials on the finish for shaping the eraser.
Flip and Form Pencil
Take away the cap finish from the chuck. Switch the depth of the 2 drilled holes onto the skin of workpiece so you don’t by accident flip by to the inside cavities. Push the components collectively and re-mount them on the lathe between facilities—as you’d a spindle. Form the rounded eraser finish and tapered pencil level, leaving the ferrule part just a little excessive, simply as it’s on an actual pencil.
To form and carve the steel ferrule part, start by turning beads on both aspect of a brief heart space, the place horizontal particulars shall be carved. You should utilize your lathe’s indexing operate to divide the horizontal strains into equal increments.
One other trick is to make use of a size of paper with the increments marked on it. Lengthen a strip of paper across the circumference and lower it the place the 2 ends meet. Measure the size of the paper strip and divide that size into equal divisions.
Then wrap the paper across the workpiece and switch the marks. Utilizing the device relaxation as a straightedge, draw the horizontal strains. I take advantage of a V-shaped carving gouge to chop the grooves. Along with your spindle lock engaged, run the V-gouge alongside the device relaxation so that you’ll get a straight lower.
I like to make use of a rasp to form the flats of the hexagonal predominant part of the pencil physique. You should utilize the identical paper-strip methodology to measure and denote the six sections of the pencil’s hexagon form. Utilizing the device relaxation as a straightedge, draw the six horizontal strains onto the pencil physique.
Take away the workpiece from the lathe and separate the cap from the physique. Maintain the pencil physique securely with clamps, on the lathe with a jam chuck, or with a vise on a workbench (my choice).
File flat or rasp all areas between the pencil strains. I all the time attempt to cease in need of the pencil strains, in order that they’ll stay as a reference .
Subsequent, I take advantage of a belt sander to complete shaping the eraser. Including a number of flats will mimic the way in which an actual pencil eraser takes care of it has been used a number of occasions.
As soon as the turning and shaping are accomplished, it’s time to do any closing sanding and apply paint. I take advantage of milk paint, however acrylic or oil may work high-quality, too. For the ferrule part, I take advantage of metal-colored markers (obtainable from art- or office-supply shops). I take advantage of graphite to imitate the pencil lead.
Coloring the venture is the enjoyable half. Bear in mind you’re making the thought of a pencil—it doesn’t have to be an actual reproduction. Have enjoyable exploring all the chances this venture has to supply.
Beth Eire, an expert architectural woodturner and sculptor with greater than thirty years of expertise, lives and works in St. Petersburg, Florida. She teaches the two-month Turning Intensive at The Heart for Furnishings Craftsmanship in Maine, in addition to workshop lessons at main craft facilities across the nation. For extra, go to bethireland.net.