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

Saturday, 19 December 2015

Santa's Workshop: A Couple of 'Compact' Style FPs for the Stockings

As soon as I started my 'Christmas' holiday (actually the two weeks before the Christmas week - luck of the draw…), I got to work in my workshop to put together a few Christmas gifts.

Here are two of the pens that I made - a couple of pens in my 'Compact' style (which is a modified, clipless version of my Shirt Pocket Fountain Pen).  One is done in Ruby Flake acrylic, and the other in 'Raku Lava' alumilite.  This style of pen is very nicely suited for carrying in a small pouch in a purse or backpack.

Both are fitted with steel JoWo fine nibs, and are cart/converter fills.

Thanks for looking!


Monday, 14 December 2015

Colour Splash - Warning: Not for the faint of heart!

Every once in a while I get a request for a wildly colourful pen that grabs attention.  I used to make a number of what I called 'Pen of Many Colours'.  Unfortunately, having many adhesive joints can render a pen a little more susceptible to breakage - especially when dropped.  So, I don't make a lot of those any more, but instead have started using one of Jonathon Brooks' materials that he calls 'Primary Manipulation' - an alumilite that is wildly, garishly colourful, and one that is definitely not for all tastes. This is the pen for one who wants to catch peoples' eyes and start conversations.  Conversations like "Wow - that pen is crazy - where in the world did you get it?", or "Cool pen - never seen anything like that before", or quite probably, "Aaaaargh!  What IS that thing?! My eyes - they're burning!!"

This pen is another Shirt Pocket Fountain Pen modification - slightly longer, and made not to post.  So, really, it's maybe more like my Classic style, but with simple convex ends.

In any case, I hope it suits the new owner.  Now, to write test and smooth the 1.1mm steel stub, and get it packed up to ship to Ireland.



Thursday, 10 December 2015

A First: Modified 'Mini' Shirt Pocket Fountain Pen for Shallow Pockets

Well, this was a fun challenge.  The commission was for a Shirt Pocket Fountain Pen style, but for carrying in very small, shallow shirt pockets (polo shirts).   In the end, we had to give up on making the pen a converter fill, opting to go with cartridge-only in order to allow for a shorter barrel length.

The cap itself could not be shortened much more than is already the case with my standard SPFP, given  a reasonable threaded tenon, grip size, and #6 nib.  The barrel, however, need only be as long as the contents: converter or cartridge.  So, in this case, the barrel was designed to be just long enough for a standard international cartridge.

The end result is a pen that is not unlike those '70s Japanese 'short' fountain pens made for shirt pocket carry.  The pen is quite short at 110mm capped, and 97mm uncapped; but once posted, it is a comfortable 125mm long, very pleasant to write with.  See below for a side by-side with one of my standard sized SPFPs.

The material used here is 'Golden Smoke' alumilite which I obtained from the folks at Bear Tooth Woods, framed with plain black acrylic trim and grip.  The nib is a steel 1.1mm stub made by JoWo of Germany.

Thanks for looking!


Tuxedo Style: Inlaid Shirt Pocket Fountain Pen in Black and White Acrylic

One of my colleagues where I work is a bit of a fountain pen guy, like me.  Several years back, he commissioned a fountain pen/rollerball kit pen set from me, followed a short time later by another pen, and another…all of which he still uses at work.  More recently, he has commissioned a whole series of Shirt Pocket Fountain Pens as gifts for various family members and friends' kids for graduation gifts.

Along the way, he expressed a very strong liking for the black and white SPFP, especially with the end-inlay.  So, I thought it was time to make one of these for the one who has supported my hobby/business so kindly.

As noted, this is one of my 'Shirt Pocket Fountain Pens', done in black and white swirl acrylic for the cap, with a black finial, and a black barrel with an matching axial end-inlay - tuxedo style!

Merry Christmas, to a colleague and a friend.

Thanks for looking!


Thursday, 3 December 2015

Grain-Matched Rainforest Bamboo 1.1 stub

Hi folks,

Here is one that came off my bench in the last few weeks, finally had a minute to get a couple of pics.

This is my second time using this Rainforest material, and I really, really like it.  Wonderful, strong grain-like striation in it gives it a nice organic feel.  Perfect for the Bamboo design!

By request, I have grain-matched this pen, which involves drilling out the barrel and installing an extra piece to form the threaded tenon, allowing the cap and barrel to meet exactly where the piece of acrylic was originally cut.  A bit painstaking, but worth it.

The nib pictured here is a polished steel JoWo 1.1mm stub, which has been adjusted and smoothed for the new owner.

Thanks for looking!


Wednesday, 11 November 2015

Springtime Forest Large Size Bamboo Style FP with 18K nib

Hello fellow pen fans,

Here's a pen that I just finished - one of two, actually.  It was a special order for a fellow pen maker (no stress there, really…).

This is one of my classic Bamboo style pens, but in the large size (thicker diameter to cap, barrel and grip).  It is created from one of Jonathon Brooks' lovely 'Springtime Forest blanks, and is equipped with a smoother-than-silk silver tone broad 18K nib.

Now, I wait to hear what my fellow pen maker things of it…



Sunday, 1 November 2015

October Pens - a Four-Pen Order!

Well...strictly speaking, these pens have nothing to do with October.  They are, however, the pens that I worked on during my very few off-hours over the month of October.   They were ordered quite a while back, and I finally had a chance to put this four-pen order together.

The first of these pens is one of my 'Double Taper' style pens done in Cumberland ebonite, with a two-tone Broad JoWo steel nib ground to a softened cursive italic (somewhere between stub and CI).

The second of them is one of my 'Bamboo' style pens created out of walnut wood, adjusted such that when closed, the grain of the cap and barrel are aligned to accentuate the fact that they are created out of one continuous piece of walnut.  The nib in this one is a polished steel medium JoWo.  The finish used on this pen is low viscosity cyanoacrylate, to seal and protect the wood, while yet allowing for the natural feel of the wood itself.  The inside of the cap is sealed with cyanoacrylate, and a plastic inner cap liner was created and installed to help prevent rapid nib drying. By request, I also made a matching walnut pen rest for this one.

The third of four is another Bamboo style but in cumberland ebonite, which is also made such that the grain from the cap and barrel are aligned.  This nib, a Broad JoWo polished steel, is ground to an oblique italic.   

The fourth of this batch is another Bamboo style, this time made from 'Urushi Red' acrylic.  The nib in this one is also a medium steel JoWo.

Now to finish fine-tuning the nibs, and then to get them all packed up and shipped!

Thanks for looking!


Monday, 21 September 2015

'Autumn Fire' Cigar Style Fountain Pen

Just a quick blog post - here is my latest pen, a standard sized Cigar style in an alumilite that I believe was called 'Autumn Colours'.  I thought maybe 'Autumn Fire'…

Thanks for looking!


Thursday, 17 September 2015

Matte Black Ebonite Large size Cigar style Fountain pen

Hello folks,

Here is  an order I took a while back.  It is actually the second of its kind to the same owner.

The pen is made from excellent quality German black ebonite, finished to a satin-like matte finish, except to the barrel tenon and inside the cap, which are polished (mostly just for the contrast, and because I thought it looked cool).

The pen is a Large size, which has a grip section with a max diameter of 12.7mm, or just over half an inch, compared to my standard grip with max diameter 11.5mmm.  Both are a decent size, but the large is…well, large.

I have installed a lovely 18K JoWo medium nib in this pen, as well as a premium Schmidt converter.

Thanks for looking!