|my aluminum Bic pen|
I've got a thing for metal pens. I've been planning on making my own but I haven't settled on a design yet. So I have been collecting any decent metal pens that I can find. Kickstarter is chock full of nice pen projects. I've backed a few and been generally pleased. One that I missed was the Baux Pen. So simple, it's elegant. It's nothing more than an aluminum tube machined to fit Bic pen parts. Very cool idea.
|the Baux Pen, my inspiration|
Not too long ago, I posted about some landing gear I assembled for my hexacopter. Turns out those landing legs weren't so great so I took them off and swapped them for a different design. As I did that, I noticed the aluminum tubes on the bottom of the landing legs looked to be just the right diameter for a pen. I checked with a Bic pen I had on hand and the outside diameters were almost identical.
|drilling inside diameter|
First I cut the tube to rough length. Then I chucked the tube in my lathe and opened the inside diameter of the tip end with a letter G drill bit to a depth of 1/2". Then I turned the tube around and parted off the other end to the correct length. Drilled that end with a letter E drill bit. The end plug is a bit more narrow than the tip.
Only thing left was to add a few grooves for a better grip and some visual appeal. I used a 60 degree insert and spaced the end rings 0.020" apart and 0.010" deep. At the tip I made the grooves 0.030" apart and 0.010" deep. I was going to polish the tube but I really like the shine of the grooves against the bead blasted finish of the tube.
The Baux Pen must use tubing with a larger diameter than a Bic pen to achieve the step-down look at either end. It gives the pen a much more interesting look than the straight sides of my pen. But I used what I had on hand at the time. Overall not bad for about 20 minutes work. The metal body feels better than plastic and balances better when writing. I may have to do this again in stainless steel.