57542Re: Period Finishing for a leather costrel
- Oct 27, 2008--- In Authentic_SCA@yahoogroups.com, "Michael and Nicole Anderburg"
>Bill Ruppert who is one of the best bottlers around and who has
> I was wondering if anyone had a reference (or just ideas) for the
> finishing of a leather bottle, costrel, etc.
studied that in the UK and owns some original costrels, finishes the
exterior with dye and buffs with wax but there are not boiled in wax.
Brown could be achieved by a variety of vegetable/plant dyes, black
would have been achieved with logwood based dyes or iron/vinegar dye.
The logwood based dyes oxidize over time, especially when exposed to
sunlight eventually becoming brown in color. The iron/vinegar dye will
only work on oak tanned leather and not chrome tanned leather. You can
make the iron/vinegar by placing about half a pad of fine steel wool,
00 or 000, in a jar of vinegar and let it set for a couple weeks, the
steel wool will dissolve and settle out, but when you apply the
vinegar to the leather, the leather will turn black. Waxing and
buffing the exterior will help seal the finish, but is not used to
make the vessel watertight.
Originally the costrel would have been lined with pine pitch. This
however is a carcinogen so Bill uses a commercial thermoplastic used
by the brewing industry called "brewer's pitch" which looks the same
and is food-safe. As brewer's pitch is not always easy to get, (Bill
gets it in 50 lb. bags) some people today will line the bottle with
beeswax as a modern expedient.
I hope this helps.
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