My mind is continuously blown away about all the woodworking and metal projects that are done all over the world. There are so many sanding and etching techniques that aren’t even on my radar. One in particular is a burning effect called the Shou Sugi Ban.

This Japanese method has been around for many years, several hundred according to those that specialize in this, and involves taking a torch and burning your building materials as a first step. Shou Sugi Ban experts explain that many used this technique because it’s more fire retardant, seals the wood and helps it become resistant to rotting and insects.

There are YouTube videos of people walking through this process and the different variations of it. One in particular I found was from nationally known builder, Matt Risinger.


He ran a few boards with light contact with the nylon head and then tried the wire head to see the difference. The lighter contact looks best in John’s opinion, but you can create more aggressive results with deeper contact of the brush head.

board effects

“With our machines, you can really dial it in as far as how you want the wood to look once you brush it. You can adjust the RPM of the brush head, the contact and the infeed speed,” he said. “This gives you many options as far as how aggressive you want to be on the boards.”

Photo Credit: Remodelista
Types and shades of Shou Sugi Ban | Photo Credit: Remodelista (More information)