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Old 23rd July 2021, 08:47 AM   #1
Anthony G.
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Default etching of Balinese keris

Hi folks, if you have no access to warangan or lab grade stuff to etch your keris, what other options will you take? Will using home type of vinegar be suitable?
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Old 23rd July 2021, 11:08 AM   #2
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Hi Anthony, I've used the sulphur and rice water method and have been happy enough with the result: http://www.vikingsword.com/vb/showthread.php?t=26696

You will also find extensive discussions on using realgar in this forum.

But my several attempts to buy realgar online, from several vendors, has never resulted in any staining whatsoever.
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Old 23rd July 2021, 01:32 PM   #3
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Yes, Jagabuwana's very well presented post on staining with sulphur and rice water is probably the closest alternative i've seen to a good staining with warangan.
I did note that you titled this thread "Staining a Balinese Blade". Jaga is showing his process on an old Bugis blade with a fairly topographical surface. So i'm not sure what sulphur and rice water will do to the smooth, polished surface we find on most Bali keris.
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Old 25th July 2021, 12:24 AM   #4
A. G. Maisey
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All the keris that I have used the sulphur & rice water method on were blades that had been previously stained. I do not know, but I feel that what this method does is to reactivate existing traces of arsenic left of the blade from previous applications.

The first keris I tried this method on had a polished surface, similar to a Balinese keris, but it was Malay, not Balinese, the method worked well.
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Old 26th July 2021, 06:04 AM   #5
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Thanks all for your valuable advice. I have to figure it out.....
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Old 26th July 2021, 07:08 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by David View Post
Yes, Jagabuwana's very well presented post on staining with sulphur and rice water is probably the closest alternative i've seen to a good staining with warangan.
I did note that you titled this thread "Staining a Balinese Blade". Jaga is showing his process on an old Bugis blade with a fairly topographical surface. So i'm not sure what sulphur and rice water will do to the smooth, polished surface we find on most Bali keris.
In fact, after processing a polished blade with sulphur and rice water (and salt if you like), we can observe that iron appears corroded, while iron/nickel resists much better. In my experience, even polished Bali blades become rough after this treatment. The effect obviously is related to the length of immersion.
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Old 28th July 2021, 02:33 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by GIO View Post
In fact, after processing a polished blade with sulphur and rice water (and salt if you like), we can observe that iron appears corroded, while iron/nickel resists much better. In my experience, even polished Bali blades become rough after this treatment. The effect obviously is related to the length of immersion.
Thanks Gio, that is what i was curious about since the surface of the example Jagabuwana showed did indeed look somewhat eroded. I would not want a Bali keris to get this kind of surface if it indeed started with a polished blade.
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Old 28th July 2021, 04:09 PM   #8
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Thanks Gio, that is what i was curious about since the surface of the example Jagabuwana showed did indeed look somewhat eroded. I would not want a Bali keris to get this kind of surface if it indeed started with a polished blade.
That is why I dare not try becos my bilah is polished smooth and expensive.
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Old 28th July 2021, 06:29 PM   #9
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That is why I dare not try becos my bilah is polished smooth and expensive.
Can you post a photo of it?
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Old 2nd August 2021, 06:42 AM   #10
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It's worth noting that the corrosion that you can see on the blade that I shared was not due to the sulphur treatment.

From my eyeballing, the blade didn't appear to get worse after this treatment, compared to how it was before. Something that I have noticed and has been difficult for me to control is the appearance of brightly rust-looking patches on the blade after a sulphur treatment. It's easy enough to remove with a brush, water and detergent, but this also removes some of the staining.

But I can understand why you would be reluctant to do this on a blade that you value, or one that you would otherwise not want to treat in this way.
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Old 3rd August 2021, 03:44 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by jagabuwana View Post
It's worth noting that the corrosion that you can see on the blade that I shared was not due to the sulphur treatment.

From my eyeballing, the blade didn't appear to get worse after this treatment, compared to how it was before. Something that I have noticed and has been difficult for me to control is the appearance of brightly rust-looking patches on the blade after a sulphur treatment. It's easy enough to remove with a brush, water and detergent, but this also removes some of the staining.

But I can understand why you would be reluctant to do this on a blade that you value, or one that you would otherwise not want to treat in this way.
I think i probably will use this method on old average keris but not new keris
Thanks for sharing.
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