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Procrastinator (For now.)
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just found out that I can get a really fine line by taking a ballpoint pen apart and using the stem(?) to strike a line. What was more amazing was how much easier it was to remove a line made with a ballpoint pen then one made with a pencil or a marking pen. When I thought about the mechanics of those three instruments it all makes sense. A ballpoint pen "rolls" along the surface of the wood and lays down a line of ink. The ink in a ballpoint pen is thick enough that it doesn't soak into the wood, it just "sits" on the surface. A pencil needs enough pressure to break off minute particles of graphite which are imbedded into the wood. Marking pens soak into the wood making removal tricky at times. A lot of you guys already know this but we do get a lot of new guys who might want to try this.
 

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Thanks for the tip. Why do you need to take the pen apart to do this? Can you not get the tip in close to the straight edge?
 

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Procrastinator (For now.)
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Duane, that's exactly why I take it apart so the tip of the body of the pen doesn't keep the tip of the "ink barrel" away from what ever I'm using to strike a line. Sometimes I use another piece of wood.
 

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Great tip!
I learned first this from a 'barnyard carpenter' farmer about 20 years ago and always think of him when I use the pen as a marker.
 

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I've used an ink pen on wood but they don't seem to last very long on wood. I guess it picks up dust in the roller ball. A mechanical pencil will make a finer line. The leads are bad to break off using on wood but are worth the trouble.
 

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Speak for yourself, C-Man.:laughing: Age has a way of making those marks harder to see.:eek:
I, too use a pencil. A mechanical one. Buy them 5 at a time at the dollar store. As to removal of the marks, try a Staedtler eraser from Mars Plastics They are great! Bar none, the best eraser for pencil on wood I've ever found.
I bought three of them 2 years ago and I'm still using the first one.


I prefer to use a nice sharp pencil, not an ink pen. I find an ink mark permeates the wood surface, and if sanded gets smeared. Pencil marks can be erased or sanded off. Pencil marks don't have to be pressed hard on the wood in order to see them.
 

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Speak for yourself, C-Man.:laughing: Age has a way of making those marks harder to see.:eek:
Sorry to hear that Gene. I don't need glasses YET to see lines.:laughing:
I, too use a pencil. A mechanical one. Buy them 5 at a time at the dollar store.
I agree with Steve, that those skinny little leads break real easy. I just use a regular pencil and keep it sharp. The only "shop" class I ever took was mechanical drawing and drafting. There we used leads inserted into holders. Then we used a pointer, which was a type of pencil sharpener that you stuck the pencil with the lead into, and rotated in in a circular fashion, and it would come out with a heckuva point. While using it to turn it slowly while making a line and it stays sharp a bit longer. It's a habit I kept with a regular pencil used on wood.

As to removal of the marks, try a Staedtler eraser from Mars Plastics They are great! Bar none, the best eraser for pencil on wood I've ever found.
I bought three of them 2 years ago and I'm still using the first one.
+1. :yes: I agree 100%. I can't even remember how long ago, but I bought a case of several Staedtler erasers. Some were for just pencil. There was eraser for vellum, and others. I'm still inventoried, and doubt I will have to buy another eraser for as long as I will live. Good thing too, because with CAD, the drafting supply stores are getting scarce.






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