it is more productive just going to bed.

After a number of false starts over the weekend (too many things to do, not enough time), I finally slipped into the shed around 10pm.  Couldn’t think of any particular task, so thought I’d turn a Tiger Myrtle Sierra Pen.  At that time of night, I needed something that wasn’t too noisy to make!

So, to start the count, how many indicators were there that I shouldn’t have bothered?

1. late
2. tired
3. cold (under 10C, and the shed is rather….ventilated)
4. tiger myrtle (somehow, I always stuff it up)
5. overdid the milling – ended up slightly shorter than desirable
6. turning the pen went too easily (never a good sign)
7. CA was like syrup, it was so cold
8. forgot to use accelerator, and had to strip off the finish and restart
9. got a catch with the paper, and had a nice CA bulge, rather than a good CA spread
10. found a fault in the finish – sand it back
11. got to the final polish grit, found another significant fault
12. never really got rid of the bulge, and now found a hollowing as well
13. later
14. tireder
15. colder
16. fail.

Sometimes you just have to pay attention to the messages!

I did find out one interesting trick. If you have to strip off CA, instead of sanding it away (which does take a bit – it is a durable finish), it is like any other acrylic – it doesn’t like heat.

Holding a padded piece of paper towel against the timber while it is spinning, and applying a bit of pressure quickly builds up the heat, and all of a sudden the finish fails and strips off. Once you have a start, work along the pen, and the CA comes off very easily, leaving pretty much bare timber. A quick sand, and you can be ready to start over. Interesting trick, but not one that you want to have to do, as it means something has already gone frustratingly wrong.

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