How to cast acrylic pen blanks

Many people use small wood lathes to turn wooden pens. However, the popularity of using plastic resin such as acrylic for pen turning is increasing. You can cast small acrylic pen blanks in just about any colours to create wild colour combinations such as a marbled swirl or a faux walnut. You can purchase precast pen blanks at most wood hobby stores or you can cast your own.

Pour water into the mould until the surface of the water is within 1/8 inch from the top of the mould. Pour out the water into a kitchen measuring cup. Record the measurement. This tells you how much resin you need in your mould.

Pour the water from the measuring cup into one of the clear plastic cups. Mark the top of the water line with a marker. Repeat this process with eight to ten cups.

Fill one cup with resin and then add the catalyst to the resin. Add seven drops per one ounce of resin.

Scoop up a small amount of lustre or colourant with a craft stick, enough to equal a ½-inch tall pile on 1 inch of the stick. The exact amount is determined by you. You can add additional powder if desired.

Place the stick into the resin and swirl it around until you are happy with the mixture. If you want a marbled look, leave streaks of clear resin. If you want a solid pen blank, stir the colourant into the resin until you achieve a solid colour. .

Pour the resin into the pen blank mould and allow it to sit for 24 hours. After curing, turn the mould over and tap the open end against a counter to pop the pen blank out of the mould.

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