Sign in to follow this  
Seth_Leigh

let's make some mastic varnish

Recommended Posts

Does anybody have a photo of an instrument, or even just a piece of wood, finished with mastic varnish?  Would this be a ground or a top coat? Would you color it, or use a color base coat?  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Does anybody have a photo of an instrument, or even just a piece of wood, finished with mastic varnish?  Would this be a ground or a top coat? Would you color it, or use a color base coat?

Don't want to sound like a smart alec, but the answer to your questions is yes.

This is my first after some antiquing - I hated my first attempt and figured, what the hell (so don't laugh too much): https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-_Nr17MTb5xg/Sf5opQ9dXuI/AAAAAAAAAH8/FBg0bzdXKzg/s512/1frontweb.jpg

After vernice bianca I used clear then coloured mastic varnish, a sort of glaze of oil paint, commercial wood stain (I was experimenting :-)) more clear etc.

Regards,

Tim

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sorry about the bad pics.  This is mastic varnish made in 2011 per the Herron-Allen book.  I used it on a turn of the century American fiddle that someone had stripped bare.  It's supple and remains sensitive to solvents.

 

This version is very thin, brushes nicely, and dried well for me.  First batch didn't.  After following Michael's recommendations regarding heat and UV exposure, it worked well.  It does improve with age.  The Herron-Allen text states to not even use it for 8 months as I recall.

 

post-5808-0-03421700-1393310089_thumb.jpgpost-5808-0-46816300-1393310237_thumb.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi!

I'm new in maestronet, and I've been learning from you all a lot, so thanks!

I wanted to contribute with the mastic varnish I'm doing for my "alpha 1 violin" (i.e. white chinese violin bought from ebay).

So, here are some pictures of the process!

Photo%2025-10-14%2015%2025%2056.jpgPhoto%2025-10-14%2015%2030%2017.jpgPhoto%2028-10-14%2015%2036%2027.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

When I made my own batch of mastic varnish at this stage (over the next 2-3 weeks) all the excess mastic gunk settled to the bottom and the varnish on top became as clear as pilsner beer.

 

I really like the look of the mastic varnish -- it was a dream to brush on and it dried to the touch very quickly. The real issue i had was the final result was very very soft, leaving a thumb print after a few seconds of pressure even several months after application. The varnish became even softer when i added my own madder root based pigment.

 

anyone have an idea what the long term effect of this cold mastic varnish is? doest it remain soft and supple or does it dry out and become brittle over time.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

quote:

Originally posted by: Michael_Molnar

You cannot use the dregs for good varnish.

 

No, I didn't want to use the dregs, I wanted to save the jar if possible...

 

 

Recycle the glass and ... no I won't say throw the varnish away, because you might be able to use small amounts (max 5%) with a good colophony or Strasburg turpentine varnish. However, pure mastic as a fiddle varnish, or even as a major component in a fiddle varnish, will only cause you serious heartache.  

Mastic gum is not only edible, as someone just suggested. It was used by the Romans to sweeten their breath. That's where the word 'masticate' originates. In my opinion that is the best use of this gum if you cannot find chewing gum, or mints, or dental mouthwash, or toothpaste or…

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Of the several violins I have seen that I am sure have mastic varnish, all picked up dirt and grime and are a mess after ten years of playing, particularly in the scroll/pegbox area, heel, and where the hand touches the upper edges and rib.  Maybe there are ways of keeping this from happening, or there was some other factor.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Recycle the glass and ... no I won't say throw the varnish away, because you might be able to use small amounts (max 5%) with a good colophony or Strasburg turpentine varnish. However, pure mastic as a fiddle varnish, or even as a major component in a fiddle varnish, will only cause you serious heartache.  

Mastic gum is not only edible, as someone just suggested. It was used by the Romans to sweeten their breath. That's where the word 'masticate' originates. In my opinion that is the best use of this gum if you cannot find chewing gum, or mints, or dental mouthwash, or toothpaste or…

 

It's wonderful for chewing.  I don't have pica or anything, I just really really like it.  Did anyone see that it supposedly kills cancer cells, certain bacteria (better than antibiotics) and also has action against ulcers?  There is some interesting reading out there on the topic...can't believe everything, but there's some peer-reviewed stuff that says so. 

(I revived this topic just because chewing mastic and reading random research articles is so pleasurable for me, yes)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Interesting note on the cancer thing ,I will pass that on..My wife works in the health care field (lucky me ;)) and has been doing quite a bit of study of essential oils recently. being her on call BS meter, I get to hear all about it,and from what I see there is some hokum... yes ....but also a fair amount of truth as well. the science is incomplete at this point, but large sets of subjective data are coming to the attention of some major underwriters for real in depth investigative study's to begin .  I understand the Mayo Clinic in Rochester MN is currently doing some work/ research with Frankincense on cancers ,,,... coconut oil is an antibacterial .. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That fiddle in post 104 looks awesome.  

 

" essential oils recently. being her on call BS meter, I get to hear all about it",  

 

  I'm in the same situation.  No matter what ails you, there's an oil for that.   (facepalm)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Interesting note on the cancer thing ,I will pass that on..My wife works in the health care field (lucky me ;)) and has been doing quite a bit of study of essential oils recently. being her on call BS meter, I get to hear all about it,and from what I see there is some hokum... yes ....but also a fair amount of truth as well. the science is incomplete at this point, but large sets of subjective data are coming to the attention of some major underwriters for real in depth investigative study's to begin .  I understand the Mayo Clinic in Rochester MN is currently doing some work/ research with Frankincense on cancers ,,,... coconut oil is an antibacterial .. 

 

No one believes me about coconut oil until their tooth hurts and they would swish with rat piss if it would take away the pain.  Oh, guess what.  Coconut oil and clove.  Works *almost* every time. 

 

The thing with mastic is that it kills cancer cells in a petri dish, but that's not the same as killing cancer cells in the colon. But it's still cool.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That fiddle in post 104 looks awesome.  

 

" essential oils recently. being her on call BS meter, I get to hear all about it",  

 

  I'm in the same situation.  No matter what ails you, there's an oil for that.   (facepalm)

 

Yup. . . Popeye had spinach and Olive Oil.  :P

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
Sign in to follow this  

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.