Introduction: Custom String Pulls

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Make good use of tiny scraps with this little project. These are an excellent way to add a tiny detailed personalization to your mini-blinds or ceiling fan/lights as well as any pull chain operated switch.
These are very simple to make and require the smallest of scraps.

Step 1: Gather Some Scraps

*****Please refer to your lathe manual and follow all safety precautions

You need a mini or midi lathe for this project as well as a chuck or a way to attach small scraps to the face-plate of the lathe.

You also need some string or ball chain.

Step 2: Rough Shape the Piece

Once you have the piece mounted to your lathe you can rough round it and clean it up a bit. Since the chuck is holding the work piece we can slide the tail-stock out and square the bottom of the pull.
In the next step we will be drilling the holes for the string to run through the piece.

Step 3: Drill the String/chain Hole

Now we need to drill the hole for the string. I installed the Jacobs chuck on the tail-stock and using the smallest bit (the bit that is the same diameter as the string or chain you are using.
The smallest hole goes all the way thru the work piece. The second hole goes in about 1/4" (this is to hide the knot you will tie to prevent the string from pulling completely out).

Step 4: Finish Shape the String Pull

Now you shape the piece the way you want. I tried to make a small light bulb shape for one of mine. It obviously needs work as it looks like the back side of a boxing glove to me. :) But the tear-drop shape looks quite nice. As well as the bell shapes. If I was a carver I could make these even more detailed.
Once you have the shape you desire, it’s time to sand it to completion.
After sanding. I finished the piece with some friction polish and a wax.

Step 5: Insert the String and Tie It Off

Insert the string and tie it off
Now get the string or ball chain and cut off the length you want to use.
6-8" is a good starting length.
I had to use the drill bit and a hand drill to run the bit in and out a couple times to open the hole up more. This was because the string would bind up inside and I could not get it through all the way. But cleaning the hole out like this cleaned it up enough to allow me to get it right. After you get the string through the pull, tie a double knot on the bottom end of the string then pull the top of the string up through the pull until the knot tucks it-self away inside the larger diameter hole.
Now you can mount these to the chain pulls on the ceiling fan.
Thanks for looking!
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