New ideas, new equipment

The last six months since my last blog post have passed in a blur.  As interest in my pens has increased, so too has the number of new orders.  As more and more of my precious commodity of time is spent on custom orders, I've had to very nearly stop making pens for my online store, disappointing many potential customers. This "double-edged sword" of making things for people has also illuminated several glaring shortcomings in my arsenal of tools and equipment.  When I starting making pens a few years ago, I had a pretty good woodworking shop already, but it was geared more to larger pieces of furniture rather than the very precise world of pen making. Since starting this passion with my first lathe, I have since added another wood lathe, a small metal lathe, and small metal milling machine.  I've re-invested most of the profit into better and more capable tools and equipment.  Predictably, I hit the point of maximum output from the machines I had in my shop and the result has been a predictably longer and longer time between order and delivery.  It's easy to make small investments in things like a new chisel or digital caliper, but the need for a more capable lathe could no longer be ignored.  This substantial expense represents most of my profit for the last six months, but I thrilled to announce the arrival of Chesapeake Pen's newest lathe, the Weiss WLB29F!