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DIY Shou sugi ban burning / charring of wood

Junior Contributor

DIY Shou sugi ban burning / charring of wood


This is the way i do Shou sugi ban. It is a Japanese tradition of burning the wood to make it water proof and fire proof.  There are many stages to this process..

EVERY ITEM HAS BEEN PURCHASED AT BUNNINGS. Including recycled pallets.  

so please be patient lol.

1st step is picking the piece of wood  / timber. I work with recycled materials mainly old pallets. 

2nd step Burn the wood untill it stops burning, run the burner over the wood to make sure you have cocered all areas.  This is the old tradition that makes it fire proof. Over the past couple of month i have increased the size and intensity of the nozzle and gas. If your going to give this a go start with ultra gas and trade flame propane tourch.  

Let it cool down over night.  

3rd stepI start with a josco wire wheel and remove all the charcole. I go over it a couple of times. 

4th stepI then use a josco nylon wheel to assist wth removimg the charcole. 

5th step Then a josco abrasive nylon  fan grinder brush. 

6th step Then i use a pressure washer to give it a good clean out. 

7th step Then go back over it with the fan grinder brush. 

Then let it thoroughly dry. Atleast over night. 

8th step For this item I used teal RIT fabric dye as there are a large number of colours. 

I make up 1/2 teaspoon to 1/2 cup of boiling water. 

I then paint it on attempting to cover all areas and leave it over night. 

9th step I then put a layer of feast watson wipe on poly, to give it a bit of shine. Let it dry.

10th step Then a layer of varnish.  

It is such a long, time consuming process. However so worth it. 

The item i made was a hallway / entrance stand. 

Enjoy. 20200515_170211.jpg20200517_123753.jpg20200517_113056.jpg20200517_112941.jpg20200517_121748.jpg20200517_124244.jpg20200517_125020.jpg20200517_174038.jpg20200518_123332.jpg20200518_123314.jpg


Bunnings Team Member
Bunnings Team Member

Re: DIY Shou sugi ban burning / charring of wood

Hi @Jojo69.


Many thanks for sharing the full process on how you make Shou sugi ban! It is truly amazing the effect you can achieve from the timber and dye.


I'll have to give this a go myself sometime soon.




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Trusted Contributor

Re: DIY Shou sugi ban burning / charring of wood

Hello @Jojo69 


I have always wanted to try this but using a blow torch! Looking at online techniques and entire fence areas done in this technique should be perfect for oz weather conditions. Somewhere in pops shed is an antique kerosene blow torch, possibly used to melt lead for galv gutters or burn out the odd hornets nest. Otherwise I'm sure to find one at the sunday market!

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Junior Contributor

Re: DIY Shou sugi ban burning / charring of wood

Hi @redracer01 ,

That looks impressive.  I am definitely wanting / needing  better techniques with the burning process. It is such a slow process however worth it.  


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