Welcome to my Custom Fountain Pen website/blog. I put this site together a while ago so that I could let some of my fellow pen enthusiasts and penmakers, as well as my customers, see what I have been up to lately in the workshop. I don't publish all of my pens here, but good percentage of them.

A Little About My Pens: I love doing fine work on the lathe, which is what got me into this work. That is, I enjoy the focus on the details of a project - the material and colour selection, the form, the fit and finish of the pen. I also test all of the my nibs before shipping. I fill the converter, run ink through the nib and feed, and write with it. I spend a significant amount of time smoothing and adjusting the nib of every pen that I sell. My goal, with each pen that I make, is to create a writing piece whose fit and finish will impress you when you first pull it out of the packing, and that will serve you well as a great writer when you fill it up with your favourite ink.

Have a look at my posts to see some of the work I am doing lately, or see my pricing guide in the link below to the right, or check the link to my current inventory of already-made pens (usually small, as most of my work is by commissions/orders).

Or, if you are interested, you can see some of the work I have done previously in my Custom Pen Gallery on Photobucket!

If you have a Twitter account, I am @drgoretex

If any of my posts generate particular interest, I will pin them as links on the right (eg 'Basic Nib Adjusting 101').

* ORDERS: Please contact me at kencavers@gmail.com to place an order.

* PRICES: Please see the link on the right side of the screen 'Pricing Guide' for an idea as to the cost of a pen.

Have a look at the bottom of this page for some reviews done by previous buyers!


IMPORTANT NOTICE: I am happily overwhelmed with pen orders. This gives me great joy in that my work is so well received, but saddens me that I cannot fill orders anywhere near as quickly as I would like. I am still trying to work through back orders, but if you have ordered from me and heard nothing for some time, feel free to email me and ask how things are going.
I still only make these pens in my spare time, when work and family time permit, and even then the productivity slows down during the coldest winter months thanks to my unheated workshop.
Given that I make these pens primarily as a hobby, I also reserve the right to pursue some other interesting pen projects in between filling orders.
I apologize for long delays in order fulfillment, which may in some case be over a year and a half. In the meantime, you are welcome to contact me to inquire about new pen orders, or to check up on a previously submitted order.

-Ken Cavers

Friday, 17 August 2012

Blue and Black Ebonite

Here is my latest production, an ebonite pen designed to meet some rather detailed specifications of the one who commissioned it.

Ebonite is interesting stuff to work with.   Being a  hardened rubber, it has a bit of a strong smell to it when heated or burning, as when being turned on the lathe.   Despite this, it is a material loved by pen makers for most of the past century.  It is quite durable and resilient, has a nice 'warm' feel in the hands, can be quite beautiful.  It is well enough loved, and hard enough to come by, that it usually add a bit of a premium to the price of any pen.

So this pen was created out of blue and black ebonites acquired from American Art Plastics, and as the buyer tends to use his pens posted, it was designed to post quite deeply for comfortable use.  It is equipped with a broad-tipped polished steel JoWo nib from Meisternibs,  which I have adjusted, tuned, and smoothed.  It has a steel-trimmed converter installed in it, but can take cartridges as well.

It sits at 6" long capped, or 147mm.  Uncapped, it is about 5 1/2", or about 141mm.  Posted, it is 6 3/8", or 161mm.

Thanks for having a look!

Monday, 13 August 2012


Interestingly enough, my 'bamboo' styled pens with their unique 'inlet ends' have sparked quite a bit of interest, and I have filled quite a number of orders for them - not only in the material I originally used (a polyresin with a grain-like look to it), but also in a wide variety of acrylics which bear essentially no resemblance at all to real bamboo.  This one would be a good example of that.  The result is a fun, whimsical take on the bamboo pattern, in a bold, beautiful colour!

This acrylic, the dark blue flake (or 'crush') acrylic, is one of my own favourites (one of these days, I will actually keep one for myself...).

Finishing an acrylic pen properly is a painstaking process, involving many hours of drilling, turning on the lathe, threading, finishing threads, and 'detailing' all the ends and openings to cap, barrel and grip section (sanding, finishing and polishing the openings), and finally sanding down the cap, barrel, and grip section with a series of 10 different grits of paper, from 400 grit up to 12,000 grit, ending with a polishing liquid that leaves a breathtaking shine, and makes the penmaker smile.  The total time taken to make a pen like this is about five and a half hours.  Time well spent!

This royal bamboo is equipped with a fine tip polished steel JoWo nib, and a steel-trimmed converter.

Well.  That pen was fun to make!  Thanks for looking!


Sunday, 12 August 2012

Black and Yellow

For those who have seen a number of my pens and think 'hey, I've seen this before' - well, yes, you're right.  Busted.   I'm sitting at work right now waiting for some stuff to get done so I can do what I have to do, and figured I might as well post a few old pics of a favourite pen while I'm waiting.

This is one of my favourite pens.  Well, not mine, as I made it for someone else, but you know what I mean...

The black and yellow colour combo seems to be a natural.  Literally, I guess, as it is seen so often in nature.  So this one is a commission, and the fellow who commissioned it wanted the curvy pen body (a style I have used a number of times), as well as inlays to tie the cap and body together.  So by insetting a piece of the yellow acrylic into the end of the barrel, and by trimming the cap in black, with a further inlay of yellow into the end of it, the whole pen works well together.  Further, the buyer wanted to kick the pen up a notch with an 18K gold nib.  This particular nib comes from the same stock as those used by Edison Pens, and really makes this pen special, as I only rarely use gold nibs (hey, they're expensive!).

Well, I had better go see if I can get to work now...

Thanks for looking!

Wednesday, 8 August 2012

Translucent Sea Foam Clipless!

Well, I thought I'd spend a few minutes posting this pen that I recently finished.  This one was one of my rare non-commissioned pens.   I had a customer interested in this acrylic, but couldn't commit to it, as he wasn't sure how translucent it would be - and I didn't know either.  So, I decided to have a go at it, and see for myself.

I made up this pen in a clipless style (mostly to save a couple hours extra work), and have fitted it with a polished steel JoWo broad nib.  It is - no surprise - a cartridge/converter filler.  Like most acrylic pens, it has a very nice feel in the hand, and this one is about the perfect size for me.

Anyhow, I really quite like how it came out.  It turned out to be rather translucent, so I polished the inside as best I could, which worked fairly well.   I rather like how one can see the nib even when the pen is capped.  Besides, blue-green is awesome :)

Thanks for looking!

Any comments welcome.