Shou-sugi-ban / by Joe Malboeuf

We did the shou-sugi-ban on the Passive Palatine house siding ourselves.  In addition to adding an amazing richness to the wood, this process supposedly protects the wood from burning, bugs, aging and such.  We used cedar, but other kinds of wood work as well.

  • Burn wood boards with a propane weed inferno torch. Turn the flame up high and find a comfortable angle and distance from the wood.  You want to achieve a silvery sheen on the black charred wood. Different parts of the wood and different pieces of wood are going to react differently.  Remember to do the edges and back if you are doing trim pieces. 
  • Clean off with a wire brush. A lot of the char is going to be removed.
  • Wipe down with a rag and water if you want.
  • Rub Penafin (Brazilian rosewood oil) into the wood.  We used the Verde one.  This will darken the wood a bit.
  • Dry.  The penafin needs a couple hours to settle into the wood.  If it pools up though it will need to be wiped off.  Don't leave drying wood out in the hot sun or freezing temperatures.