In this episode of Bits we discuss charring wood and the benefits of purposely lighting your projects on fire. There are really two different popular reason to expose your wooden work to an open flame; aesthetic color contrast or to add a protective finish.

Many people enjoy the look of charred projects, it gives an otherwise blond wood a more rustic and weather appearance. But charring wood for protective purposes comes from a Japanese technique called Shou Sugi Ban. By applying a thick layer of char to the wood’s surface, you are making it resistant to moisture and insect infestation. Many home goods manufacturers try and replicate this blackened wood look on flatpack furniture. It is popular because you can still see the grain and feel the texture without using paint.

This episode of Bits was sponsored by Bernzomatic.

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