Woodcrafting With Resin

What child would pass up playing with wood and resin? Especially when they can play with resin! Gooey and runny like the famous green slime but with different colors! Even for an adult, this can be fun as well. In this article, I will talk about the process of making a pen blank and turning the blank on a wood lathe.

So, grab your favorite beverage and sit back while I walk you through the process.

The Start of the Project

For this project I’m going to list the material needed for a pen blank.

What you will need

  • Pen blank
  • Pen mandrel for the wood lathe
  • Pen press
  • Pen accessories for the blank
  • Resin mold for pen blanks (If you are making your own blank)
  • Resin or your choice (Part A and Part B)
  • Wood Lathe and tools to carve with
  • Various sandpaper starting a 100 grit up to 400 grits
  • Micro mesh
  • Dr. Kirk’s Scratch Freee Polishing Wax

Prepping the Project

You can either make your own pen blank from a small block of wood such as 1”x1”x 8” (or order a pen blank since you need pen accessories). If you want, you can use a table saw or a bandsaw to cut the block of wood into smaller pieces (I prefer this method because the of fact of making the pen blanks myself). After cutting the material of wood into three or four pieces, place the smaller pieces into a small rectangle resin mold, slightly separated.

Wood and Resin Becomes One

Mix some resin and pigment powder or dye color of your choice. After mixing thoroughly, let stand for 2 or three minutes to let air bubbles surface and pop. This is normal due to the heat increase of the combine resin of part a and part b (hardener and epoxy). Slowly pour the colored resin into the mold until the small cut pieces are completely submerged in the resin. If by chance the wood material is not staying in place use popsicle sticks (cut to width) over top and carefully wrap rubber bands around the popsicle sticks and silicon mold. The next step is pop the air bubbles with a heat gun or a small blow torch by passing the heat slightly above the top of the resin. You may have to do this several times but be careful not to put heat directly to the resin. This will cause the resin to overheat and cure faster resulting in ruining the resin and deformity. Heat will pop the air bubbles. Let the resin cure for 24hrs to fully cure and harden and keep in a controlled mild temperature environment. 75 to 85 degrees.

After curing for 24hrs pull the resin and wood blank from the silicone mold. Cut the blank into two equal pieces. Drill a hole through the center of both pieces slightly larger than the pen mandrel. Place one of the cut blanks on the pen mandrel and secure it on the wood lathe. It also will depend on what type of pen mandrel you buy so pay attention to see how to place your assembly blanks together on it. It is always a good idea to test run at a low speed to see how the wood pen blank will react as it is being turned. Turn the lathe off and check for tightness on the tailstock to ensure tightness. It is always a good idea to have a measurement or a replicant of the pen to know where to start and finish with the shaping of the blank. In the construction field there is a saying, “Looks like you came to work with just your ideas but no tools to back up your ideas”. In in other words, ideas and tools go hand in hand with each other.

Start with a small 7/8 rough gouge by placing the tool flat against the tool rest with the tip slightly upwards and ease into the material. Don’t take big bites. Slowly pass right to left and back the other way to work the material down. Turn the lathe off and mark the top and bottom for the pen and continue to shape using a 5/8 shew chisel to work on the tappers of the blank. The pen bushings with help with how far to turn the blank. Just don’t have the wood blank the same diameter as the bushings. It’s okay to have the blank bigger than the pen bushings. With the desired thickness done it is time to sand starting with 100 grits.

At low speed hold the sandpaper with both hands under the wood blank and with firm pressure start sanding for a few seconds going back and forth and continue sanding with the other sandpaper going up in grits. After desired smoothness check for any holes in the resin, if there are small holes don’t fret. Just make up a small amount of resin and fill in the holes and let dry. Then sand the resin roughness away.

Now comes the part to wax the wood and resin blank. With the lathe off wipe a good amount of Dr. Kirk’s Scratch Freee Polishing Wax on a soft cloth and rub on the blank and turn with hand to get the wax everywhere. When you are done rubbing in the wax turn the lathe on. At low speed use the same soft cloth rubbing the wax in for two or three minutes. The wax breaks down and seals in those tiny micro cracks. Take another soft cloth to buff to a high polish. Just one coat of wax is all you need. Repeat with the other pen blanks and check for tailstock tightness.

The Final Stage

Now, comes the fun part! After the blanks are finished with the sanding process it is time to assemble the blanks with the accessories and the pen press. Follow the instructions of how to set your pen press up with the pen blank. Follow the directions on how to assemble the pen blanks. The directions will have you put the writing tip of the pen followed by the pen blank and press the two together by a lever. Pay attention to how far the tip goes over the wood and make sure it is going on straight. Next, you place the twist mechanism in and press so far. Then the ink refill tube will be placed inside the twist mechanism and place the middle metal barrel over both twist and ink refill tube. The next to the last step you will assemble the top portion of the blank by having the last top tip pressed on and the last step is to put both ends together aligning the insides together. With the twisting action you should be able to see the tip of the ink pen come out. If by chance the tip is not out far enough just push the twist mechanism a little further into the wood by using the pen press.

If you like this article you can check out another article I wrote, Wood and Epoxy Ideas .


There you have It! Your first wood and resin pen! You can either display this pen on your desk or use it for years. Depending on the color will result in an amazing look and patterns with the depth of the resin and where wood meets resin. The high gloss from the polish wood will give another amazing appearance depending on what type of wood you use. For a dazzling wood grain look you can go for maple or box elder with a lot of distress patterns. For darker color wood use cherry or black walnut or dark mahogany. Throughout the process of making the wood and resin pen have fun and always practice safety.

If you have any comments or questions, please let me know by putting them in the comment box below.


Homer Patrick

Leave a Comment