Preserving Wood With Shou Sugi Ban

From the Manhattan blocks surrounding us are a Maya-Lin-designed museum with wood cladding on the exterior of the building, a French cafe with external timber planters, along with a pub with an outside wooden seat. These wooden surfaces seemed amazing when they were installed–went to hell after only one or 2 NYC winters. If timber will sit out, it has to be treated to be able to weather the elements.

That treatment can include slathering it into exterior-grade paint or nasty compounds, and it is far from a permanent solution; long-term homeowners one of you understand you have to have your home repainted every ten decades or so, and there is frequently sticker shock at how costly this is. A much better way to go would be to pre-treat the timber not with chemicals but with flame.

A centuries-old wood-treating method from Japan known as shou sugi ban includes charring the surface, then cleaning up the burned pieces. It might be an outlandish concept for someone hearing it for the first time, but the history of this technique is not too far fetched given our relationship with fire since the dawn of time.

We’re fascinated by fire and really it could be regarded as a universal appetite as part of our human state to produce fires. A lot of men and women talk about the advantages of being about flames, and really there have been scientific studies from the last couple of years demonstrating that fire assisted us to evolve our understanding as human beings, even as staring at fires helps induce a meditative state which promotes creativity and “multi-step thinking”.

In our contemporary world, nevertheless, a lot of our passion is now relegated to the less mesmerising realms of these sparks that send clouds of smoke pouring from our automobiles and machines, or even the very small flames of electric impulse that are shooting via your pc and assisting one to see the lightbulb over your mind.

It may be viewed as more significant today than ever to honor our fiery legacy since this might assist us to easily comprehend what we have established within our present human society.

Pre-burning the surface similar to this really makes the wood more immune to fire, a critical problem in 1700s Japan (as soon as the procedure was generally used), as all homes then had a timber facade. However, the developers of the technique also found that it created the timber more immune to both pests and decay. More recently it has been discovered the charred timber can be UV-resistant.

On a practical level, playing with passion may also be really enjoyable, so even in the event that you don’t feel that Shou Sugi Ban can help your consciousness evolve or for one to be mindful of how we could achieve positive change in society, you really do get to put fire to things in a secure, controlled and valuable way so there’s a obvious pleasure benefit.

Because of this, a shou sugi prohibit finish can allegedly last for a few 80 to 100 decades, nearly maintenance-free. (This isn’t just easier on the pocket, but lets you take part in the world tendency of allowing future generations worry about mending your own stuff. Score!)

Some American companies have embraced the method, having heard of its claiming consequences, and place their own spin on it. Texas-based Delta Millworks, for Example, has implemented it to much more strains compared to Japanese Cedar that it was originally designed for, offering a gorgeous assortment of aesthetics:

Seeing that makes me wonder: Provided the method predates industrialization, what do you imagine they used to scratch on the surface, in the days before cable brushes? I really don’t see hoghair brushes cutting on itwould conventional Japanese blades be more suitable for the job. Any guesses?