Asphaltum Bummer!!

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Patrick Mackle
Posts: 471
Joined: Thu Apr 08, 2004 10:21 am
Location: Monrovia, Ca.

Asphaltum Bummer!!

Post by Patrick Mackle » Tue Sep 14, 2010 10:18 pm

I'm trying to console myself... some things lately are beginning to bring me down :cry: Some good 'ol ways are goin' away...
I went to my usual home supply store to get another gallon of asphaltum for making my own acid resist. I used to buy Henry's 108 lap cement. I've purchased it for many years and it was always solvent based and always waiting for me. NOW it is discontinued, and in its place they now sell a Henry's 107 "water based" "environmentally friendly" asphaltum emulsion. It is not at all like the 108 I used to buy. The newer 107 water based is globby and gritty and doesn't adhere to glass very well. Besides that, the additional materials I add to enhance the performance are now incompatible being that they are solvent based.
Asphaltum has been in use since the dawn of man, but you can't buy any in California anymore- for Pete sake!!
I'm gonna have to sneak down to the La Brea Tar Pits in Los Angeles in the dead of the night with a plastic bucket to "score" some tar!! Cause all the major makers had to limit their VOC"s.
I spent most of this day contacting petroleum companies and eventually finally found a kindred soul willing to explain the EPA move to water based products.
(I'm thinking that the chemical dispersant required to allow water to stay in suspension with tar is in the same family as those chemicals they copiously spewed onto the gulf spill and will come eventually come back to haunt us in the future with new reports of the spill now resting two inches thick on the ocean floor.)
All I wanted was my little can of asphaltum LEFT ALONE! :roll:
I may have to drive to Denver or Texas to buy a 55 gallon drum. And I'll have to pay a premium or beg for it at that. There may even be a minimum of a pallet of four 55 gallon drums.
I may find a supplier in Nevada. I did find a source in Dubai, but I don't think it can be shipped to California.
This may be another glaring "sign" to vacate California, yathink??
In the meantime I guess I will begin thinking in the realm of an asphaltum free way to make a screenable resist.
Oh the humanity!!

Posts: 231
Joined: Mon Sep 06, 2004 7:28 am
Location: Melbourne, Australia

Re: Asphaltum Bummer!!

Post by BruceJackson » Tue Sep 14, 2010 10:58 pm

I'm assuming that applies to all the other "types" of asphaltum.....I have bought it from car parts supply businesses where it is sold as "sound deadener"...similarly, from the paint shop as "Black Japan stain - old fashioned floor stain"...and also the artist's supplier, paying a premium for a small bottle of "artist's asphaltum" or "Brunswick black". They're all basically the same product...maybe a bit more pure and smooth for the artsy one, but all work the same.

I'm sure you've already hunted around for alternative sources, but it seems bizarre that it's so hard to buy.

I remember when whiting disappeared from the hardware shelves 10-15 years ago. It used to be extremely common, now i have to pay a premium for "gilder's whiting", even though it is exactly the same stuff you could buy for "101 household uses" for next to nothing.

Larry White
Posts: 1140
Joined: Thu Apr 08, 2004 4:18 am

Re: Asphaltum Bummer!!

Post by Larry White » Wed Sep 15, 2010 11:35 am

Easy, Twill, easy! The first thing an acid etcher needs to learn is to take things easy!

Looks like you made your first mistake...not stockin' up that 108 while ya had the chance.

Maybe you should think about gettin' out of the glass business....

Come need to do your part to save the planet....although a fella once told me
he figured our eviction notice has already been written... but I don't know....

Good luck, heh?...............


Robert Schwieger
Posts: 120
Joined: Wed Feb 07, 2007 12:38 pm
Location: Nebraska

Re: Asphaltum Bummer!!

Post by Robert Schwieger » Wed Sep 15, 2010 11:52 am

Printmaking suppliers stock liquid asphaltum. Graphic Chemical (IL) stocks it at around $12.00 at quart or $38.00 a gallon. Dick Blick also carries the small size (pint). I have found their material excellent quality. Bob

Patrick Mackle
Posts: 471
Joined: Thu Apr 08, 2004 10:21 am
Location: Monrovia, Ca.

Re: Asphaltum Bummer!!

Post by Patrick Mackle » Wed Sep 15, 2010 1:26 pm

Whew, I'm good. $11.00 a gallon. Bought 'em up- cleaned 'em out. Probably bury me in it. 8)
Pat (aka: Tar Baby)

"Good Morning," said Brer Rabbit, doffing his hat. "Nice weather we're having."

The Tar Baby said nothing. Brer Fox laid low and grinned an evil grin.

Brer Rabbit tried again. "And how are you feeling this fine day?"

The Tar Baby, she said nothing. Brer Fox grinned an evil grin and lay low in the bushes.

Brer Rabbit frowned. This strange creature was not very polite. It was beginning to make him mad.

"Ahem!" said Brer Rabbit loudly, wondering if the Tar Baby were deaf. "I said 'HOW ARE YOU THIS MORNING?"

The Tar Baby said nothing. Brer Fox curled up into a ball to hide his laugher. His plan was working perfectly!

"Are you deaf or just rude?" demanded Brer Rabbit, losing his temper. "I can't stand folks that are stuck up! You take off that hat and say 'Howdy-do' or I'm going to give you such a lickin'!"

The Tar Baby just sat in the middle of the road looking as cute as a button and saying nothing at all. Brer Fox rolled over and over under the bushes, fit to bust because he didn't dare laugh out loud.

"I'll learn ya!" Brer Rabbit yelled. He took a swing at the cute little Tar Baby and his paw got stuck in the tar.

"Lemme go or I'll hit you again," shouted Brer Rabbit. The Tar Baby, she said nothing.

"Fine! Be that way," said Brer Rabbit, swinging at the Tar Baby with his free paw. Now both his paws were stuck in the tar, and Brer Fox danced with glee behind the bushes.

"I'm gonna kick the stuffin' out of you," Brer Rabbit said and pounced on the Tar Baby with both feet. They sank deep into the Tar Baby. Brer Rabbit was so furious he head-butted the cute little creature until he was completely covered with tar and unable to move.
Br'er rabbit meets the Tar Baby Pat
220px-Br'er_Rabbit_and_Tar-Baby.jpg (8.33 KiB) Viewed 3307 times

erik winkler
Posts: 1063
Joined: Sat Feb 23, 2008 5:48 pm
Location: Amsterdam Netherlands

Re: Asphaltum Bummer!!

Post by erik winkler » Wed Sep 15, 2010 1:34 pm

Ok I know our little Irish chemist makes great stuff in his laboratory, but.....
What about the Nazdar acid resist glass inks?
They must stick to the glass great and as the name says 'resist acid'.
Just an idea.... if it can be whiped off with that horrible enviroment unfriendly thinner substance :wink:

Enrique Winklairias
de Hollanda
Realizing we are in the 2nd renaissance of the arts.
Learn, copy and trying to improve...
Still in the learning phase ;-)
Amsterdam Netherlands

Patrick Mackle
Posts: 471
Joined: Thu Apr 08, 2004 10:21 am
Location: Monrovia, Ca.

Re: Asphaltum Bummer!!

Post by Patrick Mackle » Wed Sep 15, 2010 1:48 pm

As a matter of fact I have several NazDar resists in quarts on my shelf. One is an "experimental sample" for me to evaluate. The resists are light blue in color.
I was not thrilled with their performance as they dried in the screen and if I added retarder to them for open time, they left too thin a layer of resist. I hate to have to print each piece of glass multiple times to make the resist thicker. Registering each time is too difficult and time consuming. I gotta do it in one pull!!
So that's why I make my own. That's why it is so frustrating when life (and legislation) throw wrenches on my tracks.

Ingrid Mager
Posts: 75
Joined: Mon Jan 18, 2010 12:23 am

Re: Asphaltum Bummer!!

Post by Ingrid Mager » Wed Sep 15, 2010 2:24 pm

Pat, that's a decent price! Where in Denver? (I googled, but must have googled wrong)
I am living about 45 miles up the hill from Denver now...

Patrick Mackle
Posts: 471
Joined: Thu Apr 08, 2004 10:21 am
Location: Monrovia, Ca.

Re: Asphaltum Bummer!!

Post by Patrick Mackle » Wed Sep 15, 2010 5:57 pm

Hi Inga,
Found a dusty cache in a corner of San Berdu. ALOT nearer than Denver thank goodness.
"Rocky Mountain hiii-iiighh- Coloradoooo"
Pat Denver

vance galliher
Posts: 307
Joined: Mon Apr 12, 2004 11:38 pm
Location: springfield, or.

Re: Asphaltum Bummer!!

Post by vance galliher » Thu Sep 16, 2010 1:49 pm

Pat, I never knew about using Henry's 108 for asphaltum. I have several gallons in my shop that I've used for flat roofing repair. I just checked with my local hardware and #108 has been replaced with #203. Went to Henry's website and called.......the rep said that #203 would be more fiberess, but #101 would probably work just as well as #108 for glue chipping. My question to you Pat is how do you use #108...........straight from can or thinned with paint thinner ? Thanks in advance for reply
dimensional and glass art signs

Patrick Mackle
Posts: 471
Joined: Thu Apr 08, 2004 10:21 am
Location: Monrovia, Ca.

Re: Asphaltum Bummer!!

Post by Patrick Mackle » Tue Sep 21, 2010 5:34 pm

Hi Vance,
As per question #one, I have never used the asphaltum/glue chip method. I generally chill the panel, then cut and peel away un-needed glue.
As to the second, I do use it for acid etching in which I use mineral spirit, turpentine, and/or naptha depending on how I need it to behave.
I am currently experimenting with compatible materials to fortify asphaltum.
Using 108 straight from the can seems to thick for doing any kind of fine art work.

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