View Full Version : Bugei's New Hickory Boken
01-01-2001, 11:04 AM
Since I must have been very good this year, the new boken was under the tree this Christmas. It is beautiful and very well balanced. It also looks like it will benefit from a good 30-day soak in linseed oil. This one looks like a keeper!
Best regards for the New Year!
02-22-2001, 12:14 AM
It also looks like it will benefit from a good 30-day soak in linseed oil.
forgive the ignorance, but what benefit is gained from the soak in linseed oil?
02-22-2001, 07:59 AM
Good Morning, Terrance.
I have (on the advice of my sensei's sensei) treated my jo with linseed oil, and the resulting longevity has been amazing: over 20 years with no significant wear. I am not sure of the science behind it, but I am convinced it is beneficial.
02-22-2001, 08:32 AM
Here is how it works. The oil soaks into the pores of the wood and fills up the xylem and phloem. Oil (unlike water) does not evaporate - it oxidizes! So the physical property of the oil changes from liquid to a semi solid. The oxidized oil reinforces the wood. If however there is a good coat of varnish already on the bokken this will not work as the pores have been sealed. If you would like to seal an oil soaked bokken after it has finished soaking wait for three months to apply the varnish. I am extrapolating this information from two parts of my background. I used to play Irish Hurling (field hockey on steroids), where this is a common practice to the hurley (hockey stick) - and from my work as a graduate student in oil painting (where understanding the chemistry of oils and pigments is absolutely necessary).
02-28-2001, 07:10 PM
whew...all those big word just hurt my head...lol
03-01-2001, 12:01 AM
I have been treating my boken and staves on linseed oil, but I've heard folks say their boken/staff would benefit from a 30 day soaking before. Is this just said in humor or is it a good idea to actually soak said weapon? That seems like it would be rather expensive to do w/ linseed oil, in my limited exp with it it's pricey stuff.
03-01-2001, 09:02 AM
My oaken jo was treated to a thirty-day soak in linseed oil in 1980, when I reduced it from one and one eighth inches to one inch (it is octagonal). It has seen some hard service since then, and it will NOT scar or splinter. It is also very supple for oak.
To conserve oil, build a soaking tray out of plastic snap-together roof gutter. It is inexpensive and reusable.
As others have noted, remove any other finish down to bare wood before you soak.
03-02-2001, 06:38 PM
Great advice....I just destroyed my Bugei Boken doing Kata last weekend:( It lasted me awhile, but whats up with the price? I bought the full set for $35 and now the thing is running $65 for one.
While I loved the length and feel of it, It ws kinda light. Anybody know where to get a good, heavy, hardwood boken?
03-03-2001, 04:59 AM
For manufactured bokuto, try Sei Do Kai Supplies. For info, see http://sdksupplies.netfirms.com/cat_bokuto.htm
The alternative is making your own. For some info on that, see http://ejmas.com/tin/tinart_taylor_1100.htm . Due to hardware upgrades, that link might be inaccessible until about March 4, 2001, in which case you can read it using the Google cache at http://www.google.com/search?q=cache:ejmas.com/tin/tinart_taylor_1100.htm+bokuto+kim+taylor+making&hl=en
For a general purpose domestic hardwood whacker, I'd recommend hickory. (Japanese white oak is imported, so more expensive.)
03-03-2001, 08:30 PM
So if you soak the wood in oil for 30 days.... how long would you let it dry?
03-04-2001, 08:44 AM
My jo "sweated" oil for about three months after soaking. Carry a hand towel with you after the first month.
03-04-2001, 03:47 PM
I'll have to build me a trough and soak away! Did you leave yours outside, inside? Cover it? How many cans of oil did you use?
03-04-2001, 04:51 PM
Originally posted by jscotello
Irish Hurling (field hockey on steroids)
That's a damnable lie!!
In truth, Irish Hurling is actually a form of recreational homicide,
thinly disguised as an invigorating and (minimally) organized
Sunday-after-Mass group pastime.
The story is often told of the time Hitler sent his spies
to scout Ireland for a possible invasion,
the better to attack England.
Arriving by submarine on a Sunday, they witnessed games
of Hurling & Irish Football among the menfolk, after Mass let out.
The spies returned to Berlin, where they warned Hitler not to invade.
"These Irishmen murder each other for sport every Sunday. We'd never stand a chance!"
03-04-2001, 05:08 PM
My wife's relatives from County Mayo describes it as x-country stick fighting!
03-04-2001, 10:49 PM
If I remember correctly (it HAS been 20+ years), the oil evaporates fairly quickly, and by the end of the month, I was turning the jo daily to keep it covered. Use a ventilated shop that doesn't get too cold. A gallon should do your job, but if you get too much evaporation, youo can always add more.
03-05-2001, 06:50 AM
to soak my bokuto, should I use raw linseed oil or boiled linseed oil ? What about other oils ?
03-05-2001, 07:02 PM
boiled is what i've heard recommended. some thing to do with the h20 content in the oil i think
03-06-2001, 12:22 AM
I used boiled.
I took the advice offered in this thread and soaked my new Bugei bokken in boiled linseed oil for 30 days. It looks very nice, although it's a bit messy. I can see I'll need to let it hang somewhere warm to dry, maybe in my attic. Anyway, I thought I would tell everyone how I did it. I bought a gallon of boiled linseed oil and 8 feet of 3" diameter flexable discharge hose from Home Depot. The discharge hose is just a flat vinyl hose used to channel water from hot water heaters, I think. Anyway, it worked great. I sealed one end by folding the hose over itself a couple times and clamping it closed, then I inserted the bokken into the hose and hung it from the open end and poured in the oil. Not much waste, and now I can reuse the whole thing to soak a bo and jo when I get those.
Thanks for the good advice!
- Brian Busch
07-17-2001, 08:13 AM
This thread has some interesting information. I am wondering one thing though. How does one properly dry these items once soaked?
When you remove the weapon do you wipe it down with a lint free cloth? Have any of you used any special preparation to dry the item or do you just prop it in a corner over some plastic?
Any feedback from those who have already done this would be appreciated.
07-17-2001, 09:05 AM
Glad to see your soak worked out. The hose application was inspired!
Old bed sheets work just fine. You'll find your weapon will "sweat" for months, but a good daily rub will benefit the finish in the end.
07-22-2001, 10:00 AM
I normally just wipe my bokken down with tung oil a couple times a year, and let the natural oils from my skin do the rest. It seems to work well, but I must try the 30-day soak in linseed for my next bokken. I had never heard of this before.
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