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Thread: Pen Kits

  1. #1

    Pen Kits

    Hi everyone,

    I have been purchasing my pen kits from our local Rockler store. My question for all of you is where do you buy your kits from????? What is your opinion on the best quality kit???? The best bang for your buck. Can't wait to hear from you..... thanks
    spinning into a new adventure

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    S E Washington State
    I have bought from only two places so far. Penn State Industries (PSI) and Arizona Silhouette (AS). Majority from AS. They are a reseller for Berea which I think are very good pen kits. I get excellent service from AS. Fact I put in an order this morning around 9am. It is on it's way via priority mail. Great service. Got an e-mail that hey received the order so I could verify it, little while latter an e-mail stating that my order was being process and a latter one saying it was in the mail. Than I received an e-mail from USPS stating they had it, and gave me a tracking number. I'm sure it will be here tomorrow or the day after. Not enough time to get my excuse put together to tell my wife why I needed more pen kits.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Tokyo Japan
    I get mine from Lee Valley, or Craft Supplies USA, I have had great service from both.

    The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.
    William Arthur Ward

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Goodland, Kansas
    Joan I buy the majority of my pen kits from Bear Tooth Woods and also from Berea Hardwoods. I find there kits are excellent and like the Sierra a lot. I sell quite a few of them. I know there are others that are cheap or cheaper but these two have treated me well. If I have a problem with a kit I have a new kit no charge in a couple of days. I have also started using from Bear Tooth Woods the Enduro Sanding Sealer and Enduro Gloss Top coat. Take a little longer to do but gives a good, durable finish.
    Last edited by Bernie Weishapl; 05-01-2008 at 03:50 AM.
    Bernie W.

    Retirement: Thats when you return from work one day
    and say, Hi, Honey, Im home forever.

    To succeed in life, you need three things: a wishbone, a backbone and a funnybone.

  5. #5
    Thanks guys for the info. I had recieved one of the Berea Woods catalogs and liked the looks of it but didn't know if the cost of the kits were worth it. It's nice to hear from other turners on where they get their supplies. So far no ones has steered me away from a certain supplier. I'll let you know what I end up with.
    spinning into a new adventure

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Rio Rancho, NM
    I buy most of my kits from Berea, with some coming from CSUSA. I wouldn't buy a PSI kit for anything - not after some of the complaints I've read on other forums about their quality and lack of documentation.

    Nancy Laird
    FWW Registered Voter and Voting Member
    Woodworker, turner, laser engraver; RETIRED!!

    A veteran is someone who, at one point in his life, wrote a blank check made payable to his country for an amount of 'up to and including my life.' If you love your country, thank a vet.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Westphalia, Michigan
    I buy from several sources, some of whom have already been mentioned. I think the most important issue is to choose either titanium gold, platinum, or chrome finished kits. Any of the other finishes wear off in as little as 3-4 months of daily use. This is just my experiance, and I have not used any of the satin finishes offered by some of the pen companies, so I have no opinion there.

    I don't want to sell any pens I can't have faith in as far as durability.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Brooklin ON -- 45 mins. NE of Toronto, ON
    Hello all; I'm not attempting to hijack this thread. I am a new pen turner so I was very interested in where you get your kits from.

    Along with your choice of supplier, and seeing as how there are so many different kits to choose from, which kits are your favourites?

    I have turned 8 pens to date, 6 half twists from LV, and 2 slim lines from LV as well, but am still on the quest for nicely shaped and tailored pen/pencil set. Cost isn't a huge factor!
    Mack C. in Brooklin ON
    It feels great to sell a pen,
    It feels even greater to give one to a friend!

    If your presence doesn't make an impact;
    Your absence won't make a difference!

    I am a proud supporter of
    "Pens for Canadian Peacekeepers"!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Mountain Home, Arkansas
    90% of my kits come from Craft Supplies

    I use them because of the selection, especially those with quality platings. By that I mean titanium gold a/k/a Tn or rhodium/platinum. I don't care to make or sell a pen that will look worn in short amount of time. And lesser platings do wear off quickly.
    CS, while not perfect, will back up their products and have a good tech support system. Their catalog can be confusing and is often shot through with errors, do ask questions when ordering.
    If you choose to order from Berea, learn the difference between 'A' and 'B' mandrels.

  10. #10
    Today I had a problem with one of my pencil kits. I tried to put it together and it just wasn't connecting. I had purchased the kit from our local Rockler store and so I went back to them to see what I had done wrong. Come to find out the kit had the wrong length brass tube. Not only did Molly, the manager, try to fit it but when she discovered that the tube was the wrong length she gave me a free pencil kit to make up for the deficted one and also a pen kit so I could salvage the pen blanks I already made. Their kits are a little more money than some of the catalogs, but the customer service is awesome. I do agree that if I do decide to sell any of my pens I would make them out of kits that they won't wear out easily. Unfortunately Rockler doesn't carry that wide of a selection of the more expensive kits. I'm glad to hear what works and what doesn't for other turners. Thanks everyone.
    spinning into a new adventure

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