Introduction: Aromatherapy Necklaces
I found these kits to make some Aromatherapy Necklaces. They looked pretty simple. Turns out they are. And with extra bushings, they're short enough you can make more than one at a time on a standard pen mandrel.
Get some here: https://www.pennstateind.com/store/PKATHNSS.html
Once they're made, they have wicks that you drip with Essential Oils, then wear it 'round your neck and you get the benefits of that aroma all day long!
The best thing, is each necklace only needs about 1.25 inches of material, so it's a great way to use scraps and off-cuts.
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Step 1: Prepare Your Blanks.
First things first, you need to decide what you are going to use to make your necklace. I got the starter kit for these things, which allowed me to make 5. So I chose to use some Ebony, Purpleheart woods, and then also a chunk of 3 assorted acrylic pen blanks I had on hand.
Whatever you choose to use, you'll need it to be at least 5/8-inch square, and 1 1/8'inch long.
To drill the 8-mm hole through the blanks, I use my Pen Jaws and Jacobs chuck on the lathe. These blanks are short enough, that if you wanted, you could clamp them in a vise and do it by hand. A drill press also works. Just be sure the holes are centered on your blank and you'll be fine.
Step 2: Insert the Tubes!
With the blanks prepared and drilled. Use some super glue to glue the brass tubes in the centered holes. If the brass tubes are still shiny, you'll want to use some sandpaper to scuff it up, to be sure the glue adheres properly to the tube. Give them a few minutes for the glue to cure.
Now, we need to get the blank flush and square with the end of the tube. I use a barrel trimmer for this. It works great. If you don't have that (I suggest getting one), you can also sand them back, but in my experience, this is much harder to do and keep it square to the tube. I highly recommend the barrel trimmer if you're going to be making more than one of these.
Step 3: Shape Your Pendants.
Now that the tubes are squared up, we're ready to move back to the lathe. Slide the blanks onto your mandrel, with the bushings on either side. Using your lathe tools of choice, shape the blanks to your heart's desire. As these will be necklaces, I do recommend not making them too chunky. But you do whatever you'd like!
Once you've got them turned to the shape you're after, grab your sandpaper and start sanding. I use the 5-roll multi-pack of sandpaper for my lathe projects. It works well, and for the acrylic blanks, gets them ready for the micro mesh polishing.
Speaking of micro mesh, I wet sand with those, up through all the grits until they're nice and shiny. I don't usually apply any finish on acrylic turnings, but on the wood, I use a sanding paste, followed by a friction polish.
Step 4: Assemble and Enjoy!
Nearly done now.
Using a pen press (or clamp if you don't have a pen press), insert the end cap and coupler into opposite ends of the pendant. If you turned your pendant to have an obvious top and bottom, pay attention to which you insert where.
Dribble some essential oil on a wick, drop the wick into the pendant, then screw on the cap, attach the chain, and you're ready to go. Sniff away and enjoy your newest piece of jewelry.
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