When I turn pens, burning a ring adds detail and character.

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Placing a shim against a long turned piece of wood on a lathe.

When I turn pens, burning a ring adds detail and character. Sometimes, a piece of wire held against the spinning piece does the job. But I recently discovered that using a tapered wood shim allows me to burn rings of various widths. Using the thin end of the shim creates a narrow ring; cutting the shim to a thicker edge burns wider rings.
—Chuck Hunter, Brunswick, Ohio