Turn a Pen Using Wooden Pen Blanks

How to turn a Pen using Wooden Pen Blanks

Mankind has been utilizing wood for its needs and productivity of the generation; the process becoming evolved and efficient era by era. Since the effective utilization of wood created several applications, usage, and operation of it. We got to know that the wood can be turned and carved to various objects which have been used by human civilization.

Similarly, there are several wooden blanks or wooden pen blanks, from which pen making can be achieved. Each exotic wood blanks has its unique creativity in finishing and strength and can be chosen according to their characteristics.

In this article, we are going to learn how to turn a Pen using Wooden Pen Blanks. Hand-turned pens or handmade wooden pens can be carved from the pen blanks with appropriate process and valuable strategy. We will go through each process in detail to know how it can be done.

Getting the appropriate supplies

Pens can be built from varieties of distinct materials and can be given as a gift to friends, families, or in the office. To get started on the pen making, a measurable amount of supplies are required along with your favorite pen blank.

These supplies majorly include Lathe, Glues (super glues), mandrel, sand paper, pen turning kits, linseed oil, along with a clamp or drill press if needed. The mandrel can complete a few styles of the pen, but additional bushing might be needed according to requirements.

Slicing the blanks

The pen blank needs to prepare to be worked on. A substantial amount of piece of wood is needed to fit in the tube. With safety glasses on, the wood has to cut accordingly, for it to be long enough for the tubes.

The cutting can be done by bandsaw or a scroll saw with proper and precise measurements.

Drilling of the blanks

With the drill press which was required in the supplies, the drilling of the sliced wooden blank needs to be done. The drilling process can also be achieved in Lathe or a hand drill based on the finesse you have on any particular machine.


Tubes Sanding

A little sand must be applied to the blanks so that they are not shiny and slippery. The sanding is done so that the blank can be held properly while proceeding to further processes.


Gluing the blanks

The glue, either thick or thin has to be applied to the tube and it should be pushed in the blank delicately with adroitness so that the inner blank gets all the glue.

You must also twist the blank from both the sides so that the glue gets all over inside without attempting partiality to any of their areas.


Turning Process

Before the turning process begins, squaring of the blank is one of the intermediate processes to take care of. This can be done by sand paper and a square or there’s a tool available in the market especially for this process.

Turning process is figuratively indistinguishable for all the pen blanks, be it acrylic pen blanks, acrylic blanks or exotic wood blanks to turn acrylic pens or wood turned pens.

This is the core major process of this whole course of action. With a working lathe as acquired in the supplies; or skew can also be used, take the mandrel and bushings, and put a wooden blank you have on it. The arrangement should be such that the blank should be placed between two bushings and then bushings above blank and so on.

The bushings are needed according to the amount of wood required to turn down the wood. Try to turn as smooth as possible to avoid any marks or ridges. This operation can also be done by using a proper gouge or a chisel.

Sanding and Oiling

When the turning process is done, the blank must be applied by sand with 200-400 grit approximately. This will make the blank smooth enough after the turning process is done on them. Run your bare hands to know better, if the sanding is done properly.

Once you feel satiated with the sanding process, take linseed oil in any synthetic cloth (preferably), and run it cautiously on the blank to make it shiner.

Final Gluing Process

This is the pre-final process of this whole procedure. With the thin or thick glue, which is in your possession, take it on any synthetic cloth (preferably), or cotton cloth or towel. Make sure that the glue is as smooth as possible.

Now, put the synthetic towel or cloth below the pen and pressurize the glue to smooth out all the marks. Try not to take out the cloth abruptly after the process, as it will take time to finish up. A substantial amount of time is needed. Leaving the cloth for too long will allow the glue to set up there and make it a problematic situation.


Final Process—Finishing

After a brief sanding process to smooth up the blank, the finishing process needs to be done in the lathe by rubbing the bars on the wheels. When the wheels are running, turn your blanks in the wheels to procure an even and thick coat.

When it's done, take the blanks off the mandrel and get out the pen press or clamp. Always, check the blanks to see if there are any imperfections and if there are set that blank to the side and get the other one and press the tip into one end. Post this process, take the same blank with the tip and put the transmission in the other end.

It’s imperative to push it into the line and then put in the ink refill and see how far it goes. Post this process, take the blank with the imperfection and take the clip and little cap, position the clip over the imperfection and then put the spacer on between them and stick them together. That’s where you get a pen.


With all the intermediate steps, which can be skipped at some point in time—sanding, gluing, and turning the blank is most important to get an impressive pen from your favorite blank. You can also view our video and have a visualization on the pen making.

Exotic Wood Zone has multiple species of pen blanks that can be used to make the pens. Browse our website and find your favorite wood to get started!