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Ginkgo Pen Problem

Discussion in 'Getting Started' started by Kayla Hancock, Oct 2, 2012.

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  1. Kayla Hancock

    Kayla Hancock

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    Sep 29, 2012
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    Location (City & State):
    Delaware
    My grandfather took up the hobby of turning wooden pens on a lathe, he's quite experienced with woodworking though. He has a problem when turning ginkgo, its so soft that small little chips of it will rip out. No matter how much he tries to sand it, this always happens and it's never perfectly smooth. He's reluctant to make ginkgo pens because of this problem, though I want one. Are there any suggestions to things he could do to avoid the chipping problem?
     
  2. Grant Wilkinson

    Grant Wilkinson

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    Location (City & State):
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    I've not turned that species, but he may want to try flooding it with thin CA. Do that frequently. Turn/sand a bit, flood, repeat.
     
  3. Kayla Hancock

    Kayla Hancock

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    Sep 29, 2012
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    Location (City & State):
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    Thanks, I'll tell him to try that and see how it goes. Any other suggestions would be appreciated too. He normally uses an oil as a finish. Turns it, sands it smooth, and just applies the oil using the lathe, which is a pretty hardy finish. He's made quite a few pens this way.

    Edit: I told him about your idea, but he's confused on what you mean by "flooding". Could you explain it a bit?
     
    Last edited: Oct 2, 2012
  4. gary rock

    gary rock

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    Location (City & State):
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    Kayla-

    Means to saturate or flood the piece with very thin super glue, turn/sand then repeat, Until desired finish is aquired.

    Gary:cool2:
     
  5. Ian Thorn

    Ian Thorn

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    Apr 5, 2012
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    Location (City & State):
    Mosgiel New Zealand
    He could allso try on a waste piece oiling the piece let it dry then sanding it will clog his paper but may work it would save on super glue and retain his oil finish good luck in geting your pen im sure he will work it out in the long run

    Cheers Ian
     
  6. davidwalser

    davidwalser

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    Dec 10, 2006
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    Location (City & State):
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    In addition to the CA glue approach, your grandfather might soak the Ginkgo blank in Minwax's High Performance Wood Hardener. I would prepare the blank up to the point of gluing in the brass tubes and then soak the wood in the Wood Hardener long enough to allow the liquid to penetrate deeply into the wood. Then, remove the blank from the liquid and allow it to dry overnight. Then, clean out the drilled holes, glue in the tubes, and continue as usual. The Ginkgo will be much harder and your grandpa should be able to turn it cleanly. Tell him it will turn like acrylic -- which means he'll need to use extra sharp tools and go slowly.

    Wood Hardener is available at the big box stores and elsewhere.
     
  7. Bill Boehme

    Bill Boehme Administrator Staff Member

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    Location (City & State):
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    I agree wit David. Superglue tends to be a bit brittle when it gets hard and so the wood may still chip. The MinWax Wood Hardener makes the wood very hard, but does not make it brittle.
     

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