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My Mom is 91 (this past Monday) and she still sews and makes clothes. I noticed she had an the same seam ripper for years so I thought I'd make her a new one for Christmas- but it turned out to be a birthday gift. However when making one it's just as easy to make two so the other one will be for my sister for Christmas. I bought the kits from Craft Supplies because I needed some other stuff that I can only find at their site. Making the rippers is pretty straight forward, especially if you turn pens. I had some walnut pen blanks I found in a box of scraps. Drilled them with the proper sized bit using the lathe. One trick when drilling pen blanks is to not drill the hole completely thru the blank. Using a brad point bit will have the point punch thru before the bit actually exits the blank. This process keeps the blank from being blown out when the bit would exit. Once the brass tube is glued into place, the end of the blank can be trimmed near the tube- I trimmed mine on the band saw. Then used the sanding center to bring the wooden blank flush with the brass tube on each end. I planned on doing a CA finish on these. To keep the CA from gluing the bushings to the blank/tubing I apply a coating of bumble bee butter to the bushings. Then mounted the blank and bushing to the pen mandrel. Then the assembly on to the lathe Rounded the blank with a roughing gouge Shaped with the skew Sanded the blank to 400 with Abranet mesh to 400 and finished off with Abralon pads to 4000. Applied some sanding sealer. Then about 40 layers of thin CA- Assembled the parts with my shop made pen press One gold and one silver I still have a bunch of wooden scoops to turn for the nurses at my doctor's office and a few other people.
Bought some of these kits from a company named Woodcrafters of Oklahoma. They sat in a drawer for almost 15 years. When I pulled them out, I found that this company seems to be out of business. You suggested I call Berea Hardwood, and they did send some bushings and some Parker refills for the old kits. I have run into a problem: How do I install the refill? It doesn't seem to fit into the part I believe to be the correct one. I pulled another kit I have in stock, and the refill is the same as the one in the kit. It seems that it might have to be pressed into the pen part, but I am afraid that is going to ruin the point. Anybody turned one of these pens; if so, do you have any suggestions? Thanks!
Yipper. I promised the youngest she could have one too, so it's on my bench. If you recall my first one it was farm house that we constructed from to scale stick lumber with 2x4s 2x10s 2x6s etc didn't buy this one all the parts I designed and milled up including the tiny moulding, the clapboards, windows etc. This one is a kit. A friend of mine bought it in 1995 for his baby girls - who are now grown and gone He paid a king's ransom for the thing, these things ar bodaciously expensive. Very early on (right away) he found that the gozillion tiny unmarked unlabeled pieces was just too much so he packed it all away and there it sat the last 20 years. Recently gave the whole shooting match to me. I've been assembling it. It's one of those expend-O-licious over the top ridiculously over done dollhouses that come in a kit. Real Good Toys is the brand. Milled Hawthorne is the model. The assembly instructions are the very worst thing imaginable. There's thousands of parts and not one of them is labeled in any way, The PDF instructions identify the parts by stating the dimensions in fractions. Fractions which the cutting house did not adhere to closely enough to in order for the assembler to distinguish a 16th from 32nd from a 64th and yes they use very small fractions. Picture me picking up any one of a bozillion small pieces and - not knowing what it is - measuring it and consulting the PDF to try to find the dimensions. It's like trying to decipher some code for a treatise that the WWII Germans coded using their enigma machine. There are no grand scale photographs showing how things go together. Instead there are these little close up sketches that show you small bits of some assembly or other and they are so poorly drawn that it is often impossible to tell which part overlaps which. That's assuming that one could figure out which parts the sketches show. Glossy large photographs would have been good - a video better. They claim you can assemble it with a ridiculously tiny compliment of tools: tape, hammer, little nails, that sport of thing. Honestly people, if I didn't have a full shop and compressor and pin nailers I would not be able to put it together. I've had to make jigs and parts to hold things together, parts that replace some of the poorly designed parts. The stairs have been giving me conniptions. The engineers failed to make it so that one could dry fit anything. You are supposed to assemble the rail and spindles and newel posts and treads inside the house with your big fat fingers and there is nothing to support anything whilst the glue dries. The instructions claim that you can use tape. Fat chance of that. Here is my workaround for that. It's a jig I couldn't do this any other way. Not even CA glue would have worked. Too many parts to bring together in harmony.