Has anyone done Japaning during old tool restoration? I just picked up an of
old Stanley #3 and a #5 plane and have gotten all the rust off of both of
them through electrolysis and am ready to restore the original finish. Is
this something one can do in their shop? I've only seen one article about
this subject and it doesn't seem overly complicated.
I like you have been restoring old tools as a hobby, specifically planes.
I have been using the original Pontypool Asphaltum from a company by the
name of Liberty on the Hudson. It costs 26 bucks a quart. A little goes a
very long way. You will also need turpentine as you will need to thin out
the asphaltum to a more workable viscosity.
I just finished a #8 and it looks great.
If you need to talk about it some more just email me.
That's convenient ! I travel all the way to Pontypool to brew it up
from the original recipe of asphaltum and oils.
How do you use yours ? Do you stove it after application ?
BTW - recipe is at
Die Gotterspammerung - Junkmail of the Gods
Thanks for the info, I'll get a quart of the stuff right away.
What got me started on the planes was that I found two of my dad's old
Stanley's, a 4 and a 7 that badly needed restoration and we were off and
running, now I have 5 waiting for further processing. I have a couple of
1. Should I remove all of the old Japanning first or can you apply over the
2. I have read that you can use paint remover to get the old finish off, is
3. What solvent do you use to clean the metal before application?
4. Do you have any pics of your completed work?
On 5-Nov-2003, email@example.com (Lawrence Wasserman) wrote:
I used spray Tremclad (gloss black and gloss red) on the Millers
Falls #14 I just finished. Looks fine as a user, but it will
never be a "genuine" antique.
Took several layers of crud (paint, varnish etc) off the tote
and knob and sanded the result. Tung oil to finish. I've never
seen so much oil soak into any wood - not sure what it is.
The result, a mix of dark grain (well soaked-in paint etc) and
clean wood has a nice visual texture and a "used" look.
I may offend the true affectionado with the result, but it's a
nice looking workshop piece to me.
Seems like a short-sighted view to me. I know that Rik uses his planes,
I suspect that most of us do. We're talking about planes that go back
100 years or so and have been protected by their finish for A LONG
time. I doubt that black paint will last a century, whereas I don't see
any reason that the planes shouldn't go another century without any
problems if cared for properly. Many of my tools are Civil War or
before, the Stanleys being the youngsters. I certainly hope to pass
them on in as good condition, if not better, as I got them. It isn't a
question of appearance so much as one of quality.
Dave in Fairfax
reply-to doesn't work
daveldr at att dot net
As a fellow collector myself, I am saddened you want to re-japan a
collector. As I drift from place to place in search of completing my
collections, a tear comes to my eye when I see a "restored" collectable.
Cleaning up a collector is one thing but re-japanning??? argh.
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