Today I received this absolutely delightful wood temple model that was a bit dirty and in need of some gentle repairs. It came to me in a few pieces, but the pieces are whole, and the areas they separated are just where the glue has failed.
Now, I realise I don’t know a whole fuck of a lot about this thing, but I have found a few others out there. They have descriptions that are equally vague! Hooray! I haven’t learned shit. That’s actually not true, I did learn that these are made of “yakusugi,” which is Japanese cedar. The wood has been heat treated to really make the gain pop. It is covered in beautiful carved details, brass florish, and an impressive spire. There’s also a little compartment in the bottom.
Let’s get into it!
The first real problem was that it’s goddamn filthy. Luckily, none of it is nicotine. I’ve had to scrub 20 some-odd years of that off of vintage wood before. I’d rather chew broken glass than do that again. This was just dust, cobwebs, and other assorted old grungy fibers.
Now let’s have a look at the gunk, shall we?
It has this fine layer of dust.
Cobwebs and shit.
MOAR cobwebs and shit!
In so far as the damage goes, here are some good shots of that.
This level is completely removed from the unit.
The spire was loose with the flourish on top bent to the point of almost separating.
Several of the brass fittings on the edges were bent as well. Squished.
So I gathered my cleaning tools, which are highly specialized. A shitty paintbrush for detail dusting, wood cleaner, a microfiber cloth, and a few little cotton buds. Washy washy!
It took a few hours to clean everything, but that’s just because there were so many details. I really didn’t have any trouble with it.
Then came time to address the spire. I had to remove the old glue residue before reseating the flourish. It wasn’t that interesting, but I took a picture anyway. BEHOLD:
With that settled, I straightened all of these little thingies out. They’re fragile as fuck, so it was pretty stressful.
After that, it was time to stack the pieces and reseat them. Get the glooooooooo!
The second one was actually easier in spite of the gardrails. It wasn’t too stressful to avoid them, but they helped make a nice target.
What did become a challenge was this GIANT ATTACKING MONSTER BIRD OH GOD THE HORROR!!11!
Anyway. It’s all done now. Yay!
This wasn’t that interesting, probably. And it’s far from the most complicated restoration under my belt, never mind on my horizon. Soon I’ll be restoring an antique haribako. And like…for real restoring it, not just dumping cobalt blue matte paint on it and calling oh-em-gee hashtag upcycled lol. (Live your life, do what you love, but I hate that shit and I’m not sorry to say it.)
I hope to have my haori resizing tutorial done soon, too. The piece I chose for my tutorial was apparently sewn together by a goddamn psychopath, so I’ve got plenty of oddball situations to showcase. But it’s slowed me down considerably.
Anyway. I’m leaving now. -Shuts blog door-