REVERSE PAINTING AND GLUING
If you are using a translucent blank you will need to reverse paint the inside of the blank. If you only color the tube, you will still see unsightly bubbles in the glue that will be visible once the pen is complete. Try different colors for different effects. With the Magma Red blank, black is the preferred color to get the best "magma" effect. Delta Creative's Ceramcoat™ acrylic paint applied with an acid brush or Q-tip works well. After the inside of the blank is dry, simply use your choice of glue to adhere the tube.
“Original Cactus Blanks”™ are made with a urethane resin that is less brittle than other resins so your chances of having one explode are greatly reduced. That said, it is still prudent to make light cuts with sharp tools and take your time. As you get close to the finished size, stop the lathe and soak the blank with thin CA (cyanoacrylate) to reduce the chance for a last minute blow out.
BUBBLES AND VOIDS
“Original Cactus Blanks”™ are pressure cast at 80 psi to reduce bubbles but due to the complexity and surface area of the cactus, you will still likely encounter small bubbles. These are easily filled with CA while turning. If you encounter a blank that, in your opinion, has too many bubbles, please contact me for a merchandise certificate that will allow you a replacement from my inventory at no cost. (visit my Policies Page for more information)
Sand the blank just like any synthetic making sure you do not overheat the blank. Sand lightly and keep the paper moving. Wet sanding will also help reduce the heat build up but you must be absolutely sure the blank is completely dry before applying any CA finish. A film finish of some type such as CA or lacquer is highly recommended to get the highest gloss and to provide a protective film over the cactus.
If you have any questions, please give me a call or use the contact section of this website and I will do everything I can to make sure each blank turns into a successful pen!