A Pine Pitch Thread
A search didn't turn up any topical threads specific to this.
Recently, a tree went down in a storm here. Unfortunately, it was on someone else's property and they got to harvest the wood. Fortunately, they allowed me to have at it a bit and harvest some of the pitch deposits on it:
It's a pretty good batch. Now I'm looking for methods to strain and clarify it, to produce cleaner, smaller pieces.
I'm finding some online descriptions of ways to do so, but wanted to check with folks here about their ways and experiences and maybe consolidate the info in an easily identified thread for this purpose.
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Bush Class Intermediate Certified
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When I have made pine pitch before, I usually just boil it in a container over a fire or camp stove, and the scum comes to the top and I just scrape it off.
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Purifying pine pitch
The easiest way I have found the purify pitch is to take two containers that will only be used in preparing pine pitch, and an old T-shirt with two sticks (about 2 feet long). First I tie a stick to the base of the T-shirt, you can use either tape or any cordage you want to. Next I run another stick through the armholes of the T-shirt and secure each arm with tape or use cordage so that it doesnít fold in whenever you pour the pitch mixture through it. Next start a fire using one container to place the pitch you wish to purify in and place it on the fire. Also, I donít know if this is true or not but I have been told you should not allow your pitch to come to a rolling boil, I only allow it to come to a boil and start the next process. The next step is easiest with two people. You should already have your secondary container ready to receive the mixture and have your T-shirt strainer nearby. As soon as your pine pitch begins the boil, take it off the fire (carefully so that you donít get burned) and pour it through the T-shirt. You twist one way, and your helper twist the other way over the container you wish to catch the material in. The T-shirt catches all the debris and your container is left with purified pine pitch. I did not invent this method, this is the way I was taught. I hope that I have explained this well enough for you to understand it, I was born without the teaching bone.
Edit; there are quite a few videos on YouTube that shows several methods of doing this. This man does his primitively but I enjoy his videos. gotrocksinhead
Mods. If I'm not allowed to name someone on YouTube just delete it.
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Put it in a sock or something that can take the heat of melting it
Then once liquid just remove the sock that's filled with the junk
works for beeswax
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Thanks for the tips, so far, everyone. Some here, along with others I've seen elsewhere have raised a coupla' questions/concerns in my mind. Granted, I haven't yet tried any of these, but before I do and in the process of choosing which way(s) to go, I'm wondering:
1. Some folks seem to be advising mixing the pitch with other substances in the process, before making "ingots", cakes, etc. Stuff like beeswax, charcoal, critter poop, etc.
2. Some folks caution about both the pitches high flammability and noxious fumes when heating.
3. Some folks describe heating/boiling the pitch in water and then somehow "skimming" it off/out, rather than just pitch boiling.
4. Some advise wrapping pitch in some type of cloth before/during immersion and then pressing that down while in the solution to squeeze filter the pitch out in the container. Others advise pouring melted pitch through filters or lifting filters from bottom of pot once heated/melted.
Lots of these seem sensible to obvious, which is why I'm hoping for more actual personal experiences and, of course, a disasterous but hilarious account or two.
Again, thanks all.
Now I have to redo my resin stick. Didn't think about sharpening the end.
Originally Posted by Jonah L. Archer
That article was amazing. I can report that pine resin, rabbit droppings, and charcoal work
very well together also.
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