Category: Creations

Right place and time to do something I swore I would not do again.

Right place and time to do something I swore I would not do again.

Stick with me. I’m going somewhere with this I promise.

Let me come right out and say that it has been a pleasure working with Jerry from Additive Pens. However it brought me back to doing something that I swore I would not do again which is large volume production turning. When he came to me with this proposal I had to do some serious contemplation about the commitment it would mean and decide if it would drop me back into the slump I had just come out of which kicked off at the Atlanta pen show last year and the absolute failure of my Elemental series pens.

I was in a difficult place. I had a dying piece of critical machinery, funds too tight to afford the machine I knew I needed and a GoFundMe campaign that despite a lot of verbal support did not gain any financial traction. At the end of the day, his timing was right and I was in a place that I felt I could use this as an opportunity to bootstrap myself back up into the ranks I had fallen out of in the custom pen world. Even if it meant long hours on nights and weekends to grind through 200 units.

Also I chose to do it because I believe in what he is doing. As an amateur maker and fan of new technologies I’m always looking for ways to integrate things like my laser, CNC and now his 3D SLA printing capabilities. Jerry was the right person to partner with and what he is doing fuels my drive to see this and future projects come to fruition.

So where am I going with this?

I turned this into a growth opportunity and an efficiency gain that ultimately I will be passing down to you, my partners and customers in this journey in several ways.

1st, it kept me in business by funding the new lathe that I desperately needed. The new one is bigger, safer, more powerful and most importantly more accurate than the rickety machine I had been working on.

2nd, when you are faced with turning out 200 identical units of something you start immediately searching for efficiency gains. “How can I do this operation faster and more accurately?” is on your mind the entire process Step one kicked my tail to spend more time with my CAD program to make some plans that we could collaborate on and give me a reference for faster setup times for each piece. Step two was to purchase some purpose built tools. Reamers with hard stops for repeatable hole diameter and depth, new taps and dies, etc… The payoff is that all of these gains can be carried over to my normal pen creation process saving time and improving accuracy at each step along the way.

3rd it also provided a bump in social media traffic. Interacting with another maker during his campaign on Instagram and Facebook has increased awareness for both of our brands. It makes the all-knowing social media AI start showing your posts to more people which creates more interactions which creates an exponential bump in traffic which continues the process again.

So in short, it has been a fun collaboration process and I thank Jerry for saving my ass by keeping me in business. I look forward to future projects.

 

Humbled by our community

I’m typically a humble guy. If you compliment me I will offer my gratitude but never truly feel worthy the praise. That’s a difficult position to be in for someone who practices an art but at the same time help drive to improve.

From the Pen Cup author Mary Collins recently offered her praise for a pen that she purchased from me at the DC pen show. The pen was a slightly different mix of the colors that make up the combustion resin from Jonathon Brooks @ Carolina Pen Company. I use Jonathon’s blanks for the larger percentage of my pens and love working with the material and he has a tremendous eye for colors. This particular Ares model only came to be the weekend before we left for DC. It was a whim creation from a set of blanks that caught my eye while Jonathon was up spending time in my shop. I guess it was meant to be that this pen was created and found a home with Mary. And to top it off she was able to get a matching stand from Jonathon and an Architect grind from Dan Smith “The Nib Smith” himself.

I just wanted to take a moment to thank Mary for her kind words. I spent some time with her and her husband at DC and couldn’t have met a nicer couple.

You can read the review here: https://fromthepencup.wordpress.com/2016/10/24/a-collaboration-of-talents-the-fisher-of-pens-ares-fountain-pen/

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New material selection – Cranberry Night Acrylic

New material selection – Cranberry Night Acrylic

One of my favorite suppliers had a hadfull of new materials listed and this was one of 4 that caught my eye immediately.

This is Cranberry Night which is a swirling color acrylic with plenty of transparent sections making it perfect for our specialty Siren style pens.

The first pen will be completed tonight and will be available for direct sale assuming I don’t keep it for myself. I’m really in love with this material.

 

Request a quote today for your new Cranberry Night custom pen

Video review of a Fisher of Pens custom – Alternative Nib

Video review of a Fisher of Pens custom – Alternative Nib

While our standard nibs are the JoWo or Bock steel nibs, we do offer alternatives. This video reviews one of my custom gray line celluloid pens using an Esterbrook 9048 fine flexible nib from our friends at Anderson Pens.

This pen has also been converted to use a converter instead of your typical eye dropper or sac configuration.

 

Gallery

 

 

 

Rare vintage celluloid fountain pens

Rare vintage celluloid fountain pens

2 of the 5 planned direct-for-sale rare and vintage celluloid pens have been finished up and hit the store front today.

Celluloid and it’s variants such as cellulose acetate and cellulose nitrate were precursors to our modern plastics. Typically the material was created in thin sheets that were then spiral wrapped around a mandrel to form a finished tube with a fixed outer and inner diameter.  This was the dominate material for the highest end pens from approximately the 1920’s through the early 1950’s when modern plastics started to hit the market.

There is a finite supply of this material left in the world and once it’s gone, it’s gone forever. This is your chance to get a one-of-a-kind custom fountain pen in these vintage materials.

View the Gold Herringbone Vintage Celluloid Custom Fountain Pen in our store.

View the Green Web Vintage Celluloid Custom Fountain Pen in our store.

Just another day in the office for the mad scientist

Just another day in the office for the mad scientist

Inspiration struck today when picking through a bunch of old cutoff scraps in the shop.  I ran across a piece of blue and white swirl alumilite resin that I don’t even recall how it made it’s way into the shop. I was in the mood for something hybrid so I dug some more and came across a piece of redwood lace burl that I’ve been holding on to for a while. I placed the two side by side and was tickled by what I saw.

Hit the drawing board, or composition book in this case, and figured out the placement of the segments. A little bit of white/black/white pick guard material to set the two materials apart and off I went. I marked all of the resin cuts to keep them oriented the way they were as a solid as well as getting the orientation of the wood lined up just so and glued them all together.

After a little trickery on the lathe and some assembly with a set of rhodium plated hardware with black titanium scroll work and a new rollerball pen was born.

This pen is listed in the store here

Ready for your next #mondaymatchup?

Ready for your next #mondaymatchup?

For you J Herbin Stormy Gray lovers, this one was tailor made for you! The perfect Twitter or Instagram #mondaymatchup of ink and pen.

The alumilite body of this torpedo shaped  medium sized fountain pen is a hand mixed combination of dark charcoal gray and metallic flake gold. As with all of our custom pens, this one was hand turned, rubbed, buffed and spit shined to meet our sometimes overly critical eye.

We’ve paired this beauty up with a JoWo steel two-tone nib but custom ground nibs or even the occasional gold nib have been known to find their way into our pens. All one is required to do is ask (entirely based on availability and what color socks I’m wearing when I read your email)

Now for the boring technical stuff…

Length capped: 138.5mm
Length open: 131.0mm
Body width: 12.6mm at widest
Cap width: 13.8mm at widest
Grip width: 10.2 – 10.5mm
Nib: #6 (#35) JoWo Steel
Fill: Cartridge / converter
Life, the universe and everything: 42

Like what you see an ready to buy?  Follow me to your new custom fountain pen.

Hey, that’s not a pen!

Hey, that’s not a pen!

That’s right, our lathe is good for more than just pens 🙂  I’ve been meaning to make myself a shaving brush for some time but never seemed to carve out time to do so. Well a lazy Sunday morning was all it took to get my rear in gear and finally get to work.

I’ve had give or take a half dozen large stopper blanks from my caster Jonathon Brooks sitting in a cabinet for at least the last 3 years. So I picked through them and grabbed one that I didn’t think I was going to use for a customer piece and got to work.  This was a throw away half and half casting that Jonathon didn’t think would be worth much and had thrown in his cast away box.  However I had hope for it.

I’m glad I did because I LOVE the final look! So much so I’ve asked him to make me a matching set of blanks so I can turn a razor handle and razor stand  to go with it.

This is setup with a 21mm badget hair brush. I’ve already put it to use and love it. Can’t wait to finish out the set.

 

What the heck is this M3 material you’re talking about?

What the heck is this M3 material you’re talking about?

I’ve posted a few pictures on Facebook and Instagram lately of a new material I’m taking for a spin around the lathe. It’s called M3 Titanium Glow or something there about.  It’s a new material from the distributor of M3 in cut down blanks sized for pens, game calls, pots, etc… So the big question you may be asking yourself is “what the heck is M3”?

Well, rather than me explain it all, here is a link to a bunch of psuedo-techno babble sales pitch directly from the source.  What is M3

Once you’re done reading that, the next thing you should know is that this particular flavor has a neat gimmick. It glows under black lighting / UV lighting. So the next time you find yourself in need of breaking out your pen in a dance club or your local bowling alley’s midnight bowling under the black lights, you can just nod as everyone stares and know that you are the new king.

Here are a few shots of the raw red and black blank and the rough form of the pen body.