How to make a faux Urushi/japanese lacquer finish - International Association of Penturners
     International Association of Penturners
Pens for Service Members
 
Support The IAP

Go Back   International Association of Penturners > Community Forums > Finishing
  Forgot Password
Register FAQ Members List Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read
Finishing It ain't a pen till it's FINISHED!


Logged on members can hide ads!

Welcome to penturners.org!

You've found the home of The International Association of Penturners. You are currently viewing our site as a guest, which gives you limited access to view discussions, photos, and library articles.

Consider joining our community today. You'll have full access to all of our content, be able to enter our contests, find local chapters near you, and post your questions and share your experience with our members all over the world.

Membership is completely free!!

If you have any problems with the registration process or your account login, please contact us.

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 03-05-2012, 11:39 AM   #1 (permalink)
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Upland, CA
Posts: 268
Photos: 0

Default How to make a faux Urushi/japanese lacquer finish

After stumbling across several images and sites depicting urushi finishes I can't get it out of my head. I know that the actual process is extremely expensive and time consuming so I was wondering if anyone knew of a method that can simulate the look and feel of the finish?

Here's a link that I found:
Edison Pen Company: Urushi Herald Project
Likes: (1)
grz5 is offline   Reply With Quote Top
Old 03-06-2012, 10:33 PM   #2 (permalink)
 
chriselle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Ito City, Shizuoka, Japan
Posts: 1,240
Photos: 1

Default

You can if you are in Japan where you can get the synthetic lacquers..Cashew and Washin. Without at least one of these you may be really stretching it.
Maybe something like Testor model paints could work. If you want to do something like the Herald project just substitute in the Testors. For the bump layer spread some paint out on a slab of glass. Let it dry and scrape it off. Mix the dried bits in with some paint and apply randomly on your blanks. You can substitute the gold powder with the gold dust powder packaged with clear brushing lacquer that you are supposed to add to get gold colored paint. Follow the steps in the Herald project and you might get close.
__________________
Chris Leadbeater
Ito City, Shizuoka, Japan

"Success is...The progressive realization of a worthy ideal"
chriselle is offline   Reply With Quote Top
Old 03-07-2012, 08:15 AM   #3 (permalink)
 
PTsideshow's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Macomb County Michigan
Posts: 1,033
Photos: 0

Default

By following his steps, and doing test blocks as he does. You will be able to refine your technique so it will be a good faux finish. But you may have to put a final protective coating on the top layer.
There are any number of fillers that you can color to add as the clumps, depends on what type paint you are comfortable using. That way you will have the same color for the paint layer, or as the previous post said dried clumps of paint. Acrylic paint mediums are some examples. they have basically the same kind of thing for oil and other paints. Gesso can be used or the modeling paste, and further down are the assorted gloss mediums which you can tint to mimic lacquers.

For the gold layer you can use some of the patten gold leafing foil,or any of the metallic gold paint sticks or paint. Or the gold metallic's powders for say coastal scents of any of the other suppliers.

Be sure to understand that when they talk about curing they are talking longer than just the surface is dry. It will take a number of days before the layers are cured all the way thru. Some paints can take weeks to cure! That is why they have time to it is safe to handle, dry, and re coat.

Just follow steps in the description, substituting the faux materials.

That is what I have done for years doing the props, and diorama's, there is always shortcuts to do faux finishes. whether it is blue jeans walls or anything else.

This is a rubber door mat, for in front of the sink.



Kitchen and bird room, faux flowers as they are foam rubber stamped instead of painted. This is now a popular technique with had stamps and rollers. On walls,canvas carpets and scrapbooking.
__________________
Local Chapter member IAP
PTsideshow is offline   Reply With Quote Top
Advertisement
Old 03-07-2012, 08:31 AM   #4 (permalink)
Member Liaison
 
leehljp's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Tunica, MS,
Posts: 5,919
Photos: 46

Default

Chris has some great insights on urushi. The while most professional in this field will give the idea that Urushi finishes are the result of the paint (lacquer) characteristics itself, it is more like (IMO) at least 50% technique and at the most 50% finish characteristics. Most foreigners just do now want to take the time to absorb the discipline of time and focus on the "process" to achieve the finish. "Attitude" is another part to this. (99% of) Japanese will immediately go into a mindset and attitude that inherently move into the "process" (technique) of accomplishing something rather than jumping into the "get to the end product as fast as I can" mentality.

Americans and westerners to often use the process to achieve the end results with the focus the whole way being the end result. Another way of saying this is Westerners look for the destination, Japanese look for the journey. The two different "outlooks" are noticed by the professional.

THAT said, as Chris wrote, you can achieve similar results if you focus on "discovery" of the process with other finishes that will result in similar outcomes.


For people in the "fine finishing" circles who use lacquers in the US/Canada, they at sometimes use a product called "Japan Dryers". It is not of Japan or made in Japan. It is a Western made product that is added to American lacquers (by the end user) to give the lacquer similar properties to the Japanese Urushi finishes.
. . . in other words, there are other ways to produce similar end results, but it generally has to be discovered.
__________________
Hank Lee

Experience is what you get when you don't get what you wanted!
leehljp is offline   Reply With Quote Top
Old 03-07-2012, 09:25 AM   #5 (permalink)
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Upland, CA
Posts: 268
Photos: 0

Default

Thank you for the initial input! I have some additional questions. Yesterday I purchased: Testors black one-step spray lacquer, and Testors black paint, and a gold leaf kit.
I accidentally posted the wrong link but this is the project I am trying to mimic:
Edison Pen Company: Urushi Pearl Project

This is my initial idea so please let me know if you see any flaws that I may be missing:
-Base coats: Testors Spray lacquer
-Bump coat: testors black paint (mix crushed dried flecks of paint with wet for slurry)
-Gold: apply gold leaf or powder with adhesive.
-Cover with MANY additional coats of clear minwax spray lacquer
-cutback with sanding
-Apply CA finish or alternative protective coating

Let me know if you think I would be better off with just using acrylic paints for the base and bump coats instead of lacquer then acrylic

Last edited by grz5; 03-07-2012 at 09:28 AM.
grz5 is offline   Reply With Quote Top
Old 03-07-2012, 10:59 AM   #6 (permalink)
 
PTsideshow's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Macomb County Michigan
Posts: 1,033
Photos: 0

Default

It is what you are used to using, I haven't used Testors in years either the spray or bottles. Here is their site and the other brands they make plus you can see which ones have a clear.

Test the combinations of brands on a test block or dowel before you start on a pen.

Some of the assorted brands use different solvents and could inter act or react with you base coats.
I would stick to the gold powder, and the number of layers of the assorted lacquer layers and their colors. To achieve the effect you are looking for.

I think brushing the layers of lacquer, rather than spraying would suit your purposes better suited. You will be hard pressed to find a lacquer the hue he is talking about in the blog. I key is the number of each layer with the proper coloring.

I use the acrylics mostly now due to they worked well for the latex make-up bits before the newer generations of foams and rubbers. Along with the cheaper solvent(water) and the fact that you can achieve almost any texture or look because you can mix almost everything with it.

Aged Harbor Freight LED lamp (plastic), it was first gold and copper patten leafed then aged. the crud growing on the side is patching cement mixed with the paint.

It was made as a display piece for a book collector 1st editions Journey to the Center of the Earth.

Do the test pieces and experiment first.

The steps he does is what makes it a unique finish for the pens. Even in Inrō it is the work that goes into them. There are all kinds of lacquer finishes that covers the color palette.


I can Highly recommend this guys book: Bushell, Raymond "The Inrō Handbook", Weatherhill, 2002. ISBN 0-8348-0135-3

__________________
Local Chapter member IAP
PTsideshow is offline   Reply With Quote Top
Old 03-08-2012, 04:45 AM   #7 (permalink)
 
chriselle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Ito City, Shizuoka, Japan
Posts: 1,240
Photos: 1

Default

No need for spray. Brush it on. No need for adhesive. Let your layer of paint to tack up and then apply the powder or leaf. Then more color layers. Sand back a little, more color, more powder....color, sand back...ad nauseum. KEEP THE LAYERS THIN. I rarely even paint on urushi. I wipe it on just enough that it's barely wet.

Hanks post speaks volumes. Urushi is as much a state of mind as it is a process or a material. Sounds hokey but it's true. I imagine instead of taking many months you will still be looking at many weeks to completion. It's finished when it's finished.
Instead of finishing with spray let the dried lacquer settle (further cure) for a few weeks (preferably months) and then put a CA finish on it. Either way...don't rush it.

Caveat,,,, I think this will work but this is all a big guess actually.

Keep us up to date on the project.
__________________
Chris Leadbeater
Ito City, Shizuoka, Japan

"Success is...The progressive realization of a worthy ideal"
chriselle is offline   Reply With Quote Top
Old 03-08-2012, 06:49 AM   #8 (permalink)
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 28
Photos: 0

Default

As a completely different approach, I have been mentally going through the idea of using polyresin instead of lacquer for this process.


The appearance of the urushi finish comes from several thick semitransparent (or opaque) layers. Using polyresin you can easilly get the shades you want and do the process in fewer, faster layers.

Mix up something black, layer it on unevenly (or mix in hardened bits), apply an even coat of polyresin with a lot of mica or gold powder or whatever and do a final translucent layer. If you leave it turning in the lathe while it sets you could probably do the process in three or four steps.

If you already have the stuff for casting it could be worth a shot.
691175002 is offline   Reply With Quote Top
Old 03-08-2012, 08:22 AM   #9 (permalink)
 
PTsideshow's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Macomb County Michigan
Posts: 1,033
Photos: 0

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by 691175002 View Post
As a completely different approach, I have been mentally going through the idea of using polyresin instead of lacquer for this process.


The appearance of the urushi finish comes from several thick semitransparent (or opaque) layers. Using polyresin you can easilly get the shades you want and do the process in fewer, faster layers.

Mix up something black, layer it on unevenly (or mix in hardened bits), apply an even coat of polyresin with a lot of mica or gold powder or whatever and do a final translucent layer. If you leave it turning in the lathe while it sets you could probably do the process in three or four steps.

If you already have the stuff for casting it could be worth a shot.
Problem with that way is every coat would be thicker and the number of coats with the curing and sanding between them is part of what will give the look they achieve.
The layer of 23K gold powder isn't that thick and a thicker layer would only give a painted or cast look in the finished product. The translucent layer by definition is a thin layer that the under layer can be seen through. A thicker layer would make it opaque/dense layer.

Using black instead of the dark yellow/browns and the darker browns, would also turn the layers opaque.

Quote:
semitransparent (or opaque) layers.
In finishing/painting they above aren't the same thing

The dictionary definition of opaque:
not or translucent; impenetrable to light; not allowing light to pass through.

semitransparent : partially transparent

Which would change the finished look of the pens or what ever you are putting it on.

__________________
Local Chapter member IAP
PTsideshow is offline   Reply With Quote Top
Old 03-08-2012, 02:00 PM   #10 (permalink)
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Upland, CA
Posts: 268
Photos: 0

Default

Would a protective CA finish work if lacquer was used for any of the previous layers? I'm worried that CA on top of lacquer may result in a crappy finish...
grz5 is offline   Reply With Quote Top
Related Content
Logged on members can hide ads
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 08:17 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.7.6
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Search Engine Friendly URLs by vBSEO 3.6.0

Content Copyright © 2003-2018 by Penturners.org, LLC; All Rights Reserved
Terms Of Service   Acceptable Use Policy