Dingbat - Brimstone and furtle
September 18th, 2003
11:39 pm

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Brimstone and furtle


Sulphur inlay is a rare, near extinct, 18th century inlay technique. But it looked pretty easy, so I thought I'd give it a go.

Wooden plaque,
I started with a small piece of mahogany, about 4" square. Then carved it (badly) with an oak leaf mon.

Wooden plaque,
The sulphur is just plain yellow "flowers of sulphur" from a garden shop, or the retro-ironmongers in Staple Hill. Melted in a small tin can over the kitchen stove, it melts very easily. Then just pour it carelessly over the carving.

Wooden plaque,
When cooled for a couple of minutes, scrape it flat with a cabinet scraper. Done !

Results:


Not bad. Needs a groove width of about 1/16" minimum. The groove should be square-sided, as narrow V-shaped grooves can fall out.

There are a few air bubbles in the sulphur, particularly down the middle of the wide grooves. I think having the workpiece right next to the stove might give me a quicker pour and runnier sulphur.

Surface when finished is hard and pale straw colour. Definitely needs a dark wood to show it up well.

Current Mood: workshop
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(8 comments | Leave a comment)

Comments
 
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From:cybermule
Date:September 18th, 2003 03:55 pm (UTC)
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Nice result from a pretty interesting technique.

I'm glad you've got a handy retro-ironmongers - makes life a lot easier :)
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From:abbykatt
Date:September 18th, 2003 04:22 pm (UTC)
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Hmm.. impressive.
Simple, too. :)

Here I was thinking it was a complex chemical ethching process. :P

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From:sarah_mum
Date:September 19th, 2003 05:21 am (UTC)

Um

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I though the same.
Sorry to be thick, but you actually leave the sulphur in or just long enought to patinate the wood? Er,why?
Mmm Eggy-smelling wood.
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From:quercus
Date:September 19th, 2003 08:18 am (UTC)

Re: Um

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The grooves are about as deep as they are wide, and I leave the sulphur in there permanently.

Raw sulphur isn't whiffy, and it seems to last for a couple of hundred years at least. Only when you're (over) heating it does it smell a bit of cheap coal fires.
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From:sarah_mum
Date:September 19th, 2003 09:56 am (UTC)

Re: Um

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OK.
Each to his own goat I suppose.
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From:quercus
Date:September 19th, 2003 02:12 pm (UTC)
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I should come and pick those chairs up sometime.

Whilst I still have a car (another week before it goes to the Great Citroen Pile In The Sky), I should take a trip up to Cheltie and the museum of artsy-craftsy furniture. Then I could also drop in on you on the way back. How does next week sound?
<Bluebottle> "It sound like this, 'ftang, ftang, ftang, ninny !'"
I can't do Tuesday - any other days good or bad for you ?
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From:sarah_mum
Date:September 20th, 2003 02:48 am (UTC)
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Much as I'd like to pretend a frantic social schedule, I'm free pretty much all next week.

See you whenever.
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From:jarkman
Date:September 19th, 2003 11:55 am (UTC)
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Very nice! Does it stay that colour for ever ?
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