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

Sunday, 12 February 2017

Guiness (Mirkwood?) Cigar Style Fountain Pen

Finally, we come to this Cigar style pen which is done up in what I initially thought was a Mirkwood alumilite blank (from Jonathon Brooks), - which is what the customer ordered - but as I turned it, and saw no green, I realized that it was actually a Guiness (or Root Beer, depending on your drinking habits) alumilite.   But now, as I take  a few pictures of it in good lighting, I see a few hints of green, and am starting to wonder if this may in fact be Mirkwood, but with very, very little green.  Honestly, I don't know.  Here too, I will let the customer decide if it fits the bill in terms of taste.  if not, it will be up for sale.

Anyhow, it is my usual Cigar style of pen, and is fitted with a broad steel JoWo nib, and is a cartridge/convterter filler.



'Mirkwood' Compact Style Fountain Pen

OK, so this order was actually supposed to be a Cigar style pen, but somewhere along the way while making this, the picture I had in my head of a Cigar pen turned into a Compact style pen.  No idea why, but just as I was finishing it, I realized that I had made the wrong style (*facepalm*).   So, I will check with the one who ordered it, but you may see this one go up for sale soon...

Anyhow, the 'Mirkwood' alumilite, another of Jonathon Brooks' blanks, is a cool mix of brown and green.  The actual ratio, is of course impossible to know until the pen is actually turned.  In this case, as you can see, it is mostly brown, with just a bit of brilliant green poking through.

My Compact style is nice in that it posts quite securely for convenience while writing, and is not a super large pen, so reasonably portable.

The nib on this one is medium two tone steel JoWo, ready for my write-testing, smoothing and flow adjusting prior to shipping.

Thanks for looking,


Purple Haze Cigar

Hey all,

Just a quick post with one of my recent Cigar pen orders.

This alumilite material, originally Ghost Koi purple - made by Jonathon Brooks - got renamed somewhere along the line with one of my previous pens, and 'Purple Haze' has kind of stuck.

The pen is a converter/cartridge filler, and is fitted with an EF steel JoWo nib that will be write-tested, smoothed, and flow-adjusted as desired prior to departure.



Friday, 3 February 2017

'Fall Foliage' Cigar Style Fountain Pen

Hello everyone,

Finally got some time in my workshop this week.  As usual, the cold winter is making it hard to use what little time I have free to get work done, but things came together this last few days for some pen making.

Here is a pen in the good old Cigar style, done up in 'Fall Foliage' alumilite, a very cool material.

The nib is a steel JoWo medium, and the pen is cartridge/converter fill.

Not much else to say, really - going to write-test and smooth the nib, and get it all packed up to ship!

Thanks for looking!


Thursday, 15 December 2016

Special Guest: Jonathon Brooks' Aka-Kin Tamenuri Urushi

Hey all,

Special treat today.   Someone else's pen work!

Some time ago, one of my fellow pen makers, the very gifted Jonathon Brooks began to work with the Japanese Urushi styles of lacquer art, as applied to his pens.  In a very short time, he has developed some pretty amazing skills.

Seeing his work take off, I decided I really must have some of his beautiful work (I love to collect work from other artisans), and Jonathon kindly indulged me, and began work on this amazing piece, which he describes as aka-kin tamenuri (red-gold layered urushi).

I will attempt to describe the technique from what Jonathon told me, though I will undoubtedly get some points wrong.  The base pen is a black ebonite Cigar style, with multiple layers of shu (red) urushi.  The pattern that you can see on the surface was created using the seirei nuri technique, with gold powder applied to the pattern.  After another layer of kijiro urushi, the pen is covered in a thin layer of gold powder, followed by many coats of nashiji urushi.

The result:  a truly beautiful highly polished deep reddish brown pen, with fascinating gold patterns showing from the depths of the translucent urushi.  one of the very cool things about urushi is that over time, it slowly becomes more transparent, revealing more the deeper layers.  This pen will only get better and better with age.

To top it off, the pen is fitted with a lovely 18k nib engraved with Jonathon's Carolina Pen Company logo.

This pen has immediately fallen into the category of one of my absolute favourite pens, and a lifetime keeper.  Thank you Jonathon for a very, very cool pen and fine example of excellent craftsmanship!



Thursday, 8 December 2016

White and Red 'Japan-Themed' Curvy Style Fountain Pen

Hello all,

Here is another Curvy style fountain pen - this one just finished today.  This is the result of an order that I received some time back.  The order was for a custom FP in my Curvy style, but to be themed after the Japanese flag - that is, in white, with round red inlays on the cap and barrel ends.   The red grip section is to match the inlays and tie the whole pen together.

The customer ordering it agreed to go with a pearly material rather than just plan white and plain red - and I am very glad he did, as the result is really quite eye-catching (though sadly hard to capture on camera).  All in all, I am rather happy with how this one came out.

Thanks for looking!


Amber Swirl Curvy Style Fountain Pen with Inlay and 18K Fine Nib

Hi all,

After several weeks of travel, work, family time, and more work, I finally had a chance to put in some hours in my workshop.

Here is one of my Curvy style pens in a lovely translucent Amber Swirl acrylic.  The cap has been dressed up with a black finial with more amber as an inlay - just to add a little extra to the pen.

The nib is a fine JoWo 18K, and the pen is a cartridge-converter filler.

Thanks for looking!


Wednesday, 2 November 2016

'Susutake' Bamboo Fountain Pen with Garnet Thread Wrap, Ruby Inlay, and 18K Nib

Hello folks,

Here is my latest 'Susutake' style bamboo fountain pen, and I think my best one so far.

Technically, 'sustake' refers to bamboo darkened by smoke over many years, but hey - I don't have many years to work on a pen, nor a lot of smoke to apply to it.  So instead, I use a technique adapted from my bamboo fly fishing rod making days, in which the cane (bamboo) is darkened and caramelized by the judicious use of flame.  The process here involves several rounds of flame treatment, followed by sanding off and buffing the outer layer, and repeating.   The final finish is not applied and treated until after the pen is mostly done.

Taking another design cue from my cane fly rod making days, I have given both the cap and the barrel a wrap of garnet thread, accenting the darkened bamboo.  The ruby end jewels are meant to match the thread wrap, bringing the whole piece together.

The nib on this pen is (in the pictures) a fine JoWo 18K nib, though I will be swapping it out for a juicy B nib which will be tested, tuned and smoothed for the new owner before shipping.  The ink filling system is cartridge/converter.

Thanks for looking!


Monday, 31 October 2016

Large Curvy Style Mocha Swirl Fountain Pen

So here is another one of my Curvy style fountain pens, but this time in the larger sizing.   Unlike my standard sizing, which is worked around a cap thread of 12.7mm (for a max grip diameter of 11.5mm), the larger sizing is worked around a cap thread of 14mm, allowing a grip diameter of 12.7mm max.  Whatever - it's a nice, big pen.

The request was to use one of Jonathon Brooks' nice Mocha Swirl blanks, which I have been wanting to use.  I can see the appeal - a very warm, welcoming colour combo.  Just have to be careful to avoid the temptation to eat it.

Thanks for looking!


Thursday, 13 October 2016

Earth Shirt Pocket Fountain Pen

Hi all,

Here is my latest commission off the bench - using this very cool 'Ocean Lava' alumilite from Bear Tooth Woods.  But of course, like before, I'm going with 'Earth' resin, since the blues and greens remind me so much of the globe - water and green land...

This pen is done in my Shirt Pocket Fountain Pen style, a personal favourite for practicality.  The black trim was added to highlight the Earth resin.

The pen is fitted with a fine steel JoWo nib and is a cartridge/converter fill.

Thanks for looking,