Friday, October 11, 2013

And the wotsit is...

As I write this, the quantity of wotsits guesses is a trifle low. I think I can feel a decision about this blog's future coming on, because I'm not convinced any of us are having any fun.

Anyway, the answer is... (insert drumroll here) A nib holder.


In what I believe is greenheart. Remind me not to use greenheart again - I sharpened the roughing gouge four times to complete this, which is ridiculous even allowing for my lack of turning competence.

You might recall I posted about making an effort to improve my handwriting back in June, and one of the ways to do that is to slow down. Trust me, nothing slows you down like using a dip pen. But I increasingly found the number of nibs I wanted ready to use far outweighed the number of holders I already had to hand - not helped by lucking upon a small selection of them at the car boot. And call me a tight-fisted woodworker, if you will (and heaven knows, it is a bit of a trait amongst the wood torturing fraternity), but I resented the thought of sending someone money for a stick that I had the means to make myself. So I have. A few times.


Front to back is the greenheart, pink ivory, muhuhu, and muhuhu/rosewood with a annoying decorative ring from the equally annoying pen turning kit I liberated the brass tube from to make the actual nib holder.

It's an on-going experimental thing of trying new shapes and sizes, and at least it's making use of some of those tiny pieces I hoard in my scrap box. Rather disappointingly it's seeming increasing like I should simply copy one of the plastic holders I already have, as it just seems to suit me. Figures.

For nib holders that are infinitely better turned and a lot more eye-catching, go Googling for "oblique pen holders". There are some real stunners out there.

Of course, after all that, it's too bad the handwriting hasn't improved more; my slopes are more varied than the answers to a "Which angle should I use for dovetails?" Hey ho.

14 comments:

  1. A nib holder, of course I knew it :), I only didn't know the name.

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    1. I believe you; many wouldn't ;)

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  2. If you want more replies for your quizzes don't make 'em so £$%^£&$ difficult.

    And I for one would be sad if you were to stop blogging entirely. Mind you, there are those as'd say I'm pretty sad already. :-D

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    Replies
    1. Difficult?! There was ink on it! ;P

      I'll post something about the possible future blogging next week, and lay out the options.

      Delete
  3. I still think if you sharpened up those nibs, 'twould make a mighty fine gouge :) And remember, 'bout the blog - It's a woodworking blog, and you've not been able to be in the w'shop much lately. Life goes in cycles, things go up, things go down. Don't make any permanent decisions based on the last little while.

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    Replies
    1. They actually seem to aspire to be tattooing needles, if the jab in my palm one gave me is anything to go by!

      And yeah, rest assured no decision will be hurried. Heck, am I not the Queen of Prevarication and Indecision?

      I think. Maybe. I'll get back to you on that one. Eventually.

      Delete
  4. That was too hard! I've been waiting with baited breath for the answer… Obvious in retrospect, but when I first saw "nib holder" in my RSS reader, I thought it was some obscure tool related to saws.

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    Replies
    1. Hah! Hadn't even thought of saw nibs. Dear me, that's pretty damning for a supposed galoot.

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  5. I for one would miss your blog. This query had me stumped, probably because attempts and exercises to improve my cursive writing with pencil much less pen, were never successful. In fact they were a pain in the hand! How I hated the booklet of exercises showing how to do it. Never could and likely it has blotted certain sections of my mind.

    Your examples shown in the pictures are exemplary and enviable.

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  6. Well in fairness, I didn't choose to shoot against my worst examples, Chuck. I am but human ;)

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  7. Aah! A nib holder. I have them on my list of things to make, as I dabble in ink too.
    It was hard. I think the scale threw me.

    (please don't go)

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  8. And here was me thinking it was an apple peeler !

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  9. Hi Alf, don't take the lack of comments to mean a lack of interest. A lot of people are like me, just lurking, taking it all in. As a kid my old man used to drum into us 'if you haven't anything intelligent to say, don't say anything'. This probably explains why I'm such a unsociable, miserable b$£&#d! I follow a lot of blogs, Schwarz, McGuire, Sellers, Rozaieski, Fidgen etc. I rather selfishly use these resources to further my woodworking knowledge. If I commented on every one of these I would soon run out of words. The prodigious output of Mr Schwarz alone would exhaust my entire verbal repository. I used to think I was just a sad lonely fossil with an unhealthy obsession with wood and old tools. Now thanks to blogs like yours, I no longer feel lonely.
    Anyway, what I'm trying to say is, I enjoy your blog and check in two or three times a week. Please don't go :'(
    Now, enough of this giving up nonsense. I've already used up six months verbiage on this one comment.
    Kindest regards, Mark. (aka Boon, aka sirlurkcalot)

    ps Pen nib? How am I supposed to know a pen nib? I don't have anyone to write too (see above). Anyway, what's wrong with a carpenters pencil?

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  10. I would like to echo Mark's comments.

    Hi, I'm Joe and I'm a lurker..."

    Please don't go, your woodworking knowledge is greatly valued, and for me, your sense of humour even more so.

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Owing to vast quantities of spam this blog is getting, I'm afraid only registered users can post. All comments are moderated before publication, so there may be some delay. My apologies.