Texture Wood to Highlight the Grain
Modern tools make it easy to mimic an ancient Japanese finish.
Synopsis: Learn a fast and simple way to replicate the ancient Japanese Jin di sugi finish using an angle grinder fitted with a wire brush, some stain, and this technique. The process works best on boards with a dramatic difference in density between the early and latewood growth rings.
I’ve always liked the textured look of weathered cypress. It reminds me of old playground equipment where the wood’s texture has been polished by thousands of small hands. It turns out that traditional Japanese craftsmen loved this look too. They called it jin-di-sugi and created it by burying the wood in the ground and allowing it to decay for several years. I wasn’t about to invest that much time, but I was determined to incorporate the look in my furniture. after some experimenting, I came up with a fast and simple technique using an angle grinder fitted with a wire brush.