This looks really interesting to me as a small projects way of working with wood when I don't feel like taking on something big. I was hoping that someone might like to make some comments about doing pen turning as well as just going over some basics about how to get started, anything special that would be needed beyond what I might have now and such. I see there are several types of pen hardware and I could use some info on how the different types work and what to look for if I gave these as gifts to people. What types of pen hardware can be used that will be easy for them to find refills for and which ones do I avoid. Stuff like that. Also I've always wanted to try using the lathe for something and this will be my first thing. Can a full size lathe like the Shopsmith be used for this and do you also use the full size lathe chisels or does this require something special?
I hope this gives enough background to let you understand that I think I can do this and have the equipment but just need a little advice and nudges to get started. I've searched amazon.com and found dozens and dozens of books, any that are highly recommended at this point for someone like me?
I'm thinking about producing some that would basically be just straight barrels and then working up to those with various shapes. Good plan?