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Old 15th December 2004, 12:51 PM   #1
Spunjer
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Default Barong restoration suggestion...

i have a barong that, well, looks great. the only thing that's distracting the over all picture is the part where the handle connects to blade. it's not ovbious if i intend to just display it on the wall, but i'd really like to care of this wonderful piece, and that includes making sure everything is in tiptop shape.

the blade is still securely attached to the handle; there is no play at all. the only thing is, it look rotted where it meets. also, i'm worried that moisture might get in and further weakens the connection. my questions are:

a) how do i prevent it from rotting even further, and
b) how do restore this gap?

can i fill it up with some type of clay or is there anything i can buy over the 'net to remedy this problem? please note that my woodworking skills is between negative one and zero. it goes up to one when it's life threatening.

battara, i would love to ask for your service on this but i understand that you're very busy at the moment, and also, i figure sooner or later, i will have to learn this kinda stuff
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Old 15th December 2004, 02:50 PM   #2
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Hi Spunjer

There is a epoxy puddy you can buy in Home Depot it comes in a clear plastic tube. It is tan in color for wood or black for metal use. You just knead it like clay and press it into the gap of the ferrule smooth out the top and it hardens in about an hour or so. I have used it myself to repair an old barong and a dha sword it works nicely. I would use the tan one it can be stained after it dries to match the wood.


Lew

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Old 15th December 2004, 02:52 PM   #3
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is it paintable and waterproof?
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Old 15th December 2004, 03:16 PM   #4
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Yes it can be stained to match the wood and it is waterproof it hardens like epoxy.
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Old 15th December 2004, 04:06 PM   #5
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Instead of permanent epoxy, why not just refill with pitch. Color will be right, and its more traditional. Plus it can be repaired later on.
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Old 15th December 2004, 04:52 PM   #6
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Default Restoration of trashed barong

Hey Spunger, nice barong. The only way to really fix that is to pop the hilt off, straighten the punto, and then carved the little wood shims that fit between the punto and the blade. That's if you want to do it the correct traditional way. I'm sure Battara would agree with me about that.

BUT...

As Lew mentions, the wood epoxy putty works pretty good and is a lot easier than than carving those anoying little shims. Plus, you can stain them to whatever color you like.

Here's some photos of a barong restoration I did about a year ago. Shelley and I were at a collectors arms show here and this seller sold me this little talibon, a dagger from Luzon, and this junked barong for about the price of a carton on smokes and a few six packs (i.e. dirt cheap ) The barong was in such sad shape that Shelley passed it up. I couldn't refuse. Anyways, the hilt was off and there was a huge chunk of wood missing from the side of the hilt, the wrapping was mostly gone, and a little chunk of wood missing from the beak of the kakatua. The only redeeming quality of the barong was the blade...it was covered in cosmoline and it had a complete scabbard (which also needed work.) I took it home cleaned off the cosmoline and then etched the blade to find a wonderful damascus pattern. I then decided that since this is going to be a total restoration of the hilt or rebuild, I didn't care too much about traditional methods and opted for modern conveniences. It wasn't a datu class junggayan hilt, but your ordinary fighting barong. So here are some pics of the stages of restoration. The first pic is the hilt off the blade with some epoxy putty I used to build up the missing chunk of wood. The second pic is fitting the hilt onto the blade to size things up. The third photo is adding more epoxy putty to build up the grip area. The last photo is the grip area filed down and sanded into shape
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Old 15th December 2004, 04:55 PM   #7
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The next set of photos shows more work on the punto. The first phot show how mangled the punto is. The second photo shows me straightening out the punto on a miniature anvil I have with a tiny ball peen hammer...I got both of these at a gunshow awhile back. The last photo shows the somewhat better rounded punto on the hilt.
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Old 15th December 2004, 05:01 PM   #8
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These two photos show how I jigged up the blade and hilt for gluing. I used a putty type epoxy here as well, but the darker stuff for metal. I used one of those squeeze clamps to hold the blade in place to the hilt. I then clamped this upright on my little B&D workmate. This way the epoxy would seep out even though it was a putty form. Worked great.
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Old 15th December 2004, 05:07 PM   #9
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You could round out the ferrule edge by working a rod from the inside before you decide on pitch or epoxy. Pitch is traditional and easier take back out, also it gives when its ready to be changed again and good since the blade is still secure as opposed to hard epoxy. Clean and remove loose particles to get a better bond. I prefer the gel type epoxy on my practice swords but you only get one chance on the set. With the gel or putty you can buy a stain made for epoxy that you mix in before applying. Cover the blade and ferrule with tape when you're ready for the pitch/epoxy, keeps glue where you want it and makes for a neat clean up, if you over fill it you can still go back and sand it the desired shape, if you under fill it you can add another layer.
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Old 15th December 2004, 05:10 PM   #10
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This is the part that will interest you, Spunger. Once the blade is firmly glued into the hilt. I taped off the punto and the blade with some masking tape. This is so the putty wouldn't get onto the outside of the punto and on the blade. I then added some putty into this gap between the punto and the blade. Use a putty knife to smooth it out. I also had this jigged up just like before when I was gluing the blade to the hilt to keep it pretty level. Once the putty sets, sand down the putty to your liking. It's probably safer to leave the masking tape on until your done sanding. Once your done, remove the tape and do whatever sanding is necessary...I did more final sanding to the hilt.
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Old 15th December 2004, 05:21 PM   #11
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Finally, add your finishing touches. For this barong. I first did a single layer wrap with hemp. For added grip, I added a second layer of braided hemp in short sections. I would have done it the way the do this in Sulu, but I can't figure it out and is way too complicated. I could have asked my father, but it's been a long time for him do something like this. The next photo shows me laquering the hemp grip. Traditionally, you would use pitch, but since I decided to use modern methods from the beginning, I mixed up some clear laquer (believe it or not its the Testors model airplane stuff you get at hobby store) mixed with some black pigment (I used this India ink I had laying around in an old calligraphy set...HEY IT WORKED !) The laquer also helps bind the fibers of the hemp together and seals it. Finally, the last step was to stain the wood putty in the punto. I chose a dark stain...I forgot what color it was...I think rosewood. Looks real enough to me. The last photo is the completed barong. I wish I took a better pic of it. See...it wasn't that hard to do.
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Old 15th December 2004, 07:56 PM   #12
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mmmmkay. let's see, where was i? oh yeah, how do i remove the punto *scratch head* ?

zel, nice job. definitely archive this thread. i'm afraid that's way too advance for me. this barong is too purty for me to screw up on. i think i'll settle with the pitch option. so where can i get this pitch? also, mabagani, can you elaborate a little bit more on "You could round out the ferrule edge by working a rod from the inside before you decide on pitch or epoxy"? thx in advance...
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Old 15th December 2004, 08:50 PM   #13
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Take something hard and round, like a small phillips or thick nail and slowly work the ferrule edge round. I'd tape everything up hilt, blade and edge to protect all the parts and just in case the sword wants to bite you...
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Old 15th December 2004, 09:00 PM   #14
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You can get pitch from any silver smithing shop. Just heat a knife, will melt the pitch and you can spread it in like butter. Should cool tacky in just a bit.
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Old 15th December 2004, 09:25 PM   #15
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thx federico. i'll post pics when it's all said and done...

mabagani,
will definitely try that. as you can see, i treat these sandatas very well

Last edited by Spunjer : 16th December 2004 at 01:19 AM.
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Old 16th December 2004, 04:12 PM   #16
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Talking

Good luck on your barong restoration, Spunger. Your old junggayan is still really nice and as Federico and Mabagani suggested pitch would be the best option and is quite simple to do. The barong I did the restoration on I knew would be swung around and used so I wanted the hilt to be really secure. Also, the hilt was pretty trashed under the wrapping and punto, but I wanted to salvage as much as I can. That was pretty much an extreme restoration. I didn't expect you to go to those extremes, but I wanted to give you an idea that it's still possible to salvage even a beat up hilt. In the end, that barong turned out pretty nice and is probably one of the best handling barongs I've swung around. I know the present caretaker of that barong is extremely happy with it and has done several cutting tests where it performed flawlessly. Again, good luck with that junggayan .
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Old 16th December 2004, 05:56 PM   #17
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One thing I have done on swords that will be used for hard practice, has been to do a pitch plug on the end. Essentially the sword will be held in place with a strong modern epoxy, but for aesthetics, I leave about a 1/4" room at the joint which I then fill with pitch for looks.
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Old 16th December 2004, 07:29 PM   #18
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zel and federico,
will the pitch hold the hilt in place? i can actually spin the hilt around so evidently it's no longer attached to the handle (wood shrinkage, maybe?). can i use something like superglue to hold it in place then add the pitch on top of that, or will the pitch take care of it?
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Old 16th December 2004, 07:53 PM   #19
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Question Repair

Good luck Spunjer on your resto project.

Nice job Zel on the restoration.

Have you or anyone done any Plume or Beak Restoration on the kakatua pommel on a barung? Any help or suggestions would be appreciated?
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Old 16th December 2004, 08:05 PM   #20
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Old 16th December 2004, 08:18 PM   #21
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Spunjer, what are you planning on using your barong for? Practice or display or collection? Pitch alone (if you removed the loose hilt, cleaned of loose particles, and re-filled) is a good enough adhessive. For security, for practice swords, as I noted in my post above, I have used epoxy (such as JB weld) and left a small gap for pitch to be placed so that superficially it will appear like it is held by pitch. I would not recommend superglue to fill any large cavity. A slower drying 2 part epoxy would probably work best. I prefer JB weld myself, but the drawback is that mistakes cannot be corrected as it can only be removed mechanically (eg. breaking the hilt).

Ibeam the only real cockatua restoration would be to recarve the cockatua down or to replace it completely. I would not suggest tacking on a new crest or beak, as there would a number of problems.

A. finding the banati would in the first place is difficult,
B. finding banati of similar grain and color
C. hiding the joint

One could try staining to hide, but as the wood ages, the contrast would become apparant. Ironically ivory is easier to do this with, as joint lines can often be mistaken as stress cracking. But, with wood, I really havent seen anyone add pieces that werent obvious replacements. The only thing I could think of, if you really want a bigger cockatua, perhaps add silver tips (eg. beak and crest) to the cockatua. Jose/Battara could probably whip something amazing up.
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Old 16th December 2004, 08:49 PM   #22
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federico,

it will be purely collection/display...
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Old 16th December 2004, 09:10 PM   #23
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ibeam, I would suggest the following:
  • a) leave it alone
  • b) carve a small piece of wood to match the rest of the wood and glue
  • c) glue a piece of wood and then wrap the piece with some twisted silver wire
Here is one of the pictures missing in the post that I think Spunger is refering (thanks Spunger). It is a pic of some of the work I did for Ian on his barong - I created a silver cockatoo head that was missing on his barong:
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Old 17th December 2004, 05:19 AM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Spunjer
federico,

it will be purely collection/display...

If it is going to be just display, why not just go with pitch? It is very easy to work with, at least in my opinion, and best of all very repairable. If something goes wrong, or if you need to adjust things later on, a little heat and boom it off. No damage to blade or hilt. Vs. modern epoxies, depending on the type, it can be a real chore to remove. Either harsh chemicals or mechanically (essentially breaking the hilt off).
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Old 17th December 2004, 03:01 PM   #25
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Default Thank you

Thank you Federico and Battara for the suggestions.

Battara,
Do you have any pictures you can share that you have done restorations similar to items #b & #c

# b) carve a small piece of wood to match the rest of the wood and glue
# c) glue a piece of wood and then wrap the piece with some twisted silver wire

BTW, excellent job on the Silver Kakatua on Ian's Barung.
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Old 18th December 2004, 08:37 PM   #26
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Thumbs up finally...

well, for one, can't find any pitch in this great metropolis of chillicothe. even went to columbus. no such luck. so i ended up using this product called "plastic wood", epoxy, testors flat black paint and emery board. i would like to thank you all for your great input...
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Old 18th December 2004, 09:02 PM   #27
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Came out nice !
Another material that could be used to fill that area is black sealing wax .
Google for sellers .
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Old 20th December 2004, 11:16 AM   #28
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thank you rick. if it wasn't for this message board, this would've been impossible. i'll keep that sealed wax in mind...
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Old 20th December 2004, 01:59 PM   #29
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Turned out nice. Though I suppose I should have provided a link at least to a place to get pitch. I apologize for not thinking about it ahead of time. Just figured a silver smith or jewelers supply would have some in your area, as it is used in chase/repousse for silver smithing, and often for bezel setting in jewelry. Anyways here is a link to a site where I got mine. They are located in my hometown of Rochester, MN. I know its kinda too late now, but just in case in the future. Anyways, its fun stuff to play with. There are other sites out there, but I have not dealt with them. There are also formulas on how to make your own cutler's pitch, usually mixing some other stuff into the pitch for added hardness. Anyways heres the link http://www.bernieslapidary.com/indexwork.htm

Once again, nice work, and nice barong.
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Old 20th December 2004, 09:25 PM   #30
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Spunger

Nice work on the barong! Can't tell that you used concrete at all!

ibeam

For a picture of a piece with twisted silver wire, please look at the silver pommel I did for Ian. No other pictures of "snout work" besides this. However, here is a picture of my barong before restoration:
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