So a customer asked me a few months ago if I would be willing to work with buffalo horn for a pen he wanted. I had never worked with it – and instead of just buying some and playing around with it – I asked around and did some reading – and everything I found said it cracked horribly after being turned. Maybe not for a few days, but usually, and more often then not, it would crack.
Then I read about a pen on fountainpennetwork, made by Hakase Pen Company in Japan, from water buffalo horn. Beautiful! So instead of asking others who have WORKED with it, I started asking folks who own pens made from it. So far, even after years, no cracks, but that’s with fairly thick barrel and cap walls and with an ebonite section. Sounds good. So I ordered some and it came in today. I had to go play with it.
After shopping around on the internet with my wife for new bathroom vanities – oh man that was uh, fun 😉 – I broke away and got into the shop for a few minutes. I made only the barrel, the section is from a different pen, for the photos. It still needs a good buffing, maybe go over the back of the barrel again, but WOW this was great to work with. It turned almost as nicely as some ebonites I’ve worked with. I could feel the vein, or grain, whatever you want to call it, so it had a bit of a bump or rough spot, but it still turned really nicely. It was a bit stiff taking the internal threads, but putting the outside threads on was painless.
I wish the pictures were better – but it’s late and I’m tired. Check it out. 😉
Oh, and the fuzzy stuff on the threads is tiny bits of paper towel after wiping water off.