Black Grounds

Black grounds for japans may be made by mixing ivory black with shellac varnish; or for coarse work, lamp black and the top coating of common seedlac varnish. A common black japan may be made by painting a piece of work with drying oil, (oil mixed with lead,) and putting the work into a stove, not too hot, but of such a degree, gradually raising the heat and keeping it up for a long time, so as not to burn the oil and make it blister. This process makes very fair japan and requires no polishing.

Black Japan

Naples asphaltum fifty pounds, dark gum-anime eight pounds, fuse, add linseed oil twelve gallons, boil, add dark gum amber ten pounds, previously fused and boiled with linseed oil two gallons, add the driers, and proceed as last. Used for wood or metals.

Brunswick Black

1. Foreign asphaltum forty-five pounds, drying oil six gallons, litharge six pounds, boil as last, and thin with twenty-five gallons of oil of turpentine. Used for ironwork, etc. 2. Black pitch and gas tar asphaltum, of each twenty-five pounds, boil gently for five hours, then add linseed oil eight gallons, litharge and red lead, of each ten pounds, boil as before, and thin with oil of turpentine twenty gallons. Inferior to the last, but cheaper.

Blue Japan Grounds

Blue japan grounds may be formed of bright Prussian blue. The color may be mixed with shellac varnish, and brought to a polishing state by five or six coats of Varnish of seed-lac. The varnish, however, is apt to give a greenish tinge to the blue, as the varnish has a yellowish tinge, and blue and yellow form a green. Whenever a light blue is desired, the purest varnish must always be used.

Scarlet Japan

Ground vermilion may be used for this, but being so glaring it is not beautiful unless covered over with rose-pink, or lake, which have a good effect when thus used. For a very bright crimson ground, safflower or Indian lake should he used, always dissolved in the alcohol of which the varnish is made. In place of this lake, carmine may be used, as it is more common. The top coat of varnish must always be of the white seed-lac, which has been before described, and as many coats given as will be thought proper; it is easy to judge of this.

Yellow Grounds

If turmeric be dissolved in the spirit of wine and strained through a cloth, and then mixed with pure seed-lac varnish, it makes a good yellow japan. Saffron will answer for the same purpose in the same way, hut the brightest yellow ground is made by a primary coat of pure crome yellow, and coated successively with the varnish.

Dutch pink is used for a kind of cheap yellow japan ground. If a little dragon's blood be added to the varnish for yellow japan, a most beautiful and rich salmon-colored varnish is the result, and by these two mixtures all the shades of flesh-colored japans are produced. .

Green Japan Grounds

A good green may be made by mixing Prussian blue along with the cromate of load, or with turmeric, or orpiment, (sulphuret of nic) or ochre, only the two Should be ground together and di -solved in alcohol and applied as a ground, then coated with four or five coats of Shellac varnish, in the manner already described. A very bright green is made by Laying on a ground of Dutch metal, or leaf of gold, and then coating it over with distilled verdigris dissolved in alcohol, then the varnishes on the top. This is a splendid green, brilliant and glowing.

Orange Colored Grounds

Orange grounds may be made of yellow mixed with vermilion or carmine, just as a bright or rather inferior color is wanted. The yellow should always be in quantity to make a good full color, and the red added in proportion to the depth of shade. If there is not a good fall body of yellow, the color will look watery, or bare, as it is technically termed.

Purple Japan Grounds

This is made by a mixture of lake and Prussian blue, or carmine, or for an inferior color vermilion, and treated as the foregoing. When the ground is laid on and perfectly dried, a fine coat of pure boiled nut oil then laid on and perfectly dried, is a good method to have a japan, not liable to crack. But a better plan is to use this oil in the varnish given, the first coat, after the ground is laid on, and which should contain considerable of pure turpentine. In every case, where oil is used for any purpose for varnish, it is all the better if turpentine is mixed with it. Turpentine enables oils to mix with either alcohol or water. Alkalies have this property also.

Black Japan

1. Asphaltum three ounces, boiled oil four quarts, burnt umber eight ounces. Mix by heat, and when cooling thin with turpentine. 2. Amber twelve ounces, asphaltum two ounces; fuse by heat, add boiled oil half a pint, resin two ounces; when cooling add sixteen ounces oil of turpentine. Both are used to varnish metals.

Japan Black For Leather

1. Burnt umber four ounces, true asphaltum two ounces, boiled oil two quarts. Dissolve the asphaltum by heat in a little of the oil, add the burnt umber ground in oil, and the remainder of the oil, mix, cool, and thin with turpentine. Flexible. 2. Shellac one part, wood naphtha four parts, dissolve, and color with lampblack. Inflexible.

Transparent Japan

Oil of turpentine four ounces, oil of lavender three ounces, camphor one-half drachm, copal one ounce; dissolve. Used to japan tin, but quick copal varnish is mostly used instead.

Japanners' Copal Varnish

Pale African copal seven pounds, fuse, add clarified linseed oil one half gallon, boil for five minutes, remove it into the open air, add boiling oil of turpentine three gallons, mix well, strain it into the cistern, and cover it up immediately. Used to varnish furniture, and by japanners, coachmakers, etc. Dries in 15 minutes, and may bo polished as soon as hard. 5*

Tortoise Shell Japan

This varnish is prepared by taking of good linseed oil one gallon, and of umber half a pound, and boiling them together until the oil becomes very brown and thick, when they are strained through a cloth and boiled again until the composition is about the consistence of pitch, when it is fit for use. Having prepared this varnish, clean well the copper or iron plate or vessel that is to be varnished, (japanned,) and then lay vermillion, mixed with shellac varnish, or with drying oil, diluted with turpentine, very thinly on the places intended to imitate the clean parts of the tortoise shell. When the vermillion is dry brush over the whole with the above umber varnish diluted to a due consistence with turpentine, and when it is set and firm, it must be put into a stove and undergo a strong heat for a long time, even two weeks will not hurt it. This is the ground for those beautiful snuff boxes and tea boards which arc so much admired, and those grounds can be decorated with all kinds of paintings that fancy may suggest, and the work is all the better to be finished in an annealing oven.

Painting Japan Work

The colors to be painted are tempered, generally, in oil, which should have at least one-fourth of its weight of gum sandarach, or mastic dissolved in it, and it should be well diluted with turpentine, that the colors may be laid on thin and evenly. In some instances it does well to put on water colors or grounds of gold, which a skilful hand can do and manage so as to make the work appear as if it was embossed. These water colors are best prepared by means of isinglass size, mixed with honey, or sugar candy. These colors when laid on must receive a number of upper coats of the varnish we have described before.

Japanning Old Tea-Trays

First clean them thoroughly with soap and water and a little rotten stone; then dry them by wiping and exposure at the fire. Now, get good copal varnish, mix with it sonic bronze powder, and apply with a brush to the denuded parts. After which set the tea-day in an oven at a heat of 212° or 300° until the varnish is dry. Two coats will make it equal to new.