Working with naturally occurring deadwood on collected conifers.

electraus

Mame
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Hi everyone, I recently acquired one of my first pieces of collected material — a Mendocino Pygmy cypress— and I have a question about working with the naturally occurring jin when they still have their outer layer of bark on them and have not been bleached by the sun. Am I supposed to remove that outer layer to expose the smoother interior before painting with lime sulfur or do I paint over it?
 
Definitely remove the bark. Bark will not survive long whether treated or not. It is the wood underneath you want to show as jin.
Soon after death, dried bark is firmly attached to the wood so getting it off may be a long and painful job but after a year or so the old cambium layer breaks down and that old bark will flake away from the wood underneath.
If you can't get all the bark off you can paint lime sulfur over it. Doesn't look great but it will help preserve the wood underneath until you get the time and energy to get it all off.
 
Let the jin alone. As said it can take a while for the bark to "release" from the deadwood-several years sometimes. Trying to yank it off, or scrub it off, will damage the underlying wood (And mostly not in a good way). Leaving it alone produces deadwood jin that can be more natural looking than a jin with wire and/or carving blade or machine grinder marks.
 
Definitely remove the bark. Bark will not survive long whether treated or not. It is the wood underneath you want to show as jin.
Soon after death, dried bark is firmly attached to the wood so getting it off may be a long and painful job but after a year or so the old cambium layer breaks down and that old bark will flake away from the wood underneath.
If you can't get all the bark off you can paint lime sulfur over it. Doesn't look great but it will help preserve the wood underneath until you get the time and energy to get it all off.
Thanks for the response and sorry for the delay. Is there a specific tool you would recommend to get the bark off?
 
Nothing specific. A wire brush on a rotary tool works reasonably well but difficult to get into tighter places. Knives of all shapes and sizes will do some but frustratingly slow and sometimes difficult to get into corners and crevices.
Often I just leave it to flake off naturally then treat the wood.
 
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