Original recipes for black military Leather-Lacquer

b.loree

Administrator
Staff member
For paints, VT gives an enamel gloss and strengthens the paint film. It is also used in violin varnish. I would expect that for horses, it would be used to shine up hooves for show. For our purposes I would expect that it provides shine and strength to the shellac. I have had problems with finish wrinkling due to cold or heat, one of the reasons why I am buying these ingredients.
 

Sandmann

Well-known member
Just because we discussed it in another post, I found another receipt for military black.
Chemisch-Technisches Rezepttaschenbuch, Page 146 (Author: Alvin Engelhardt / Year 1893)
https://books.google.de/books?id=zp...k seite 146 chemisch-technisches 1893&f=false
Prussian Military-Black to polish Leather:
40 parts of Borax
12 parts of Shellac
10 parts of Nigrosine
800 parts of Water

and another one to polish Helmets and Cartridge hangers (same book, same page):
Prepare a saturated solution of bleached shellac in gasoline. Add Nigrosine to make it deep black. Next, let the lacquer settle. The finished lacquer (attention: it‘s flammable) will be applied carefully and evenly thinly by using a soft sponge.
When repainting, the old lacquer is previously sanded off with pumice. The paint generally dries quickly and gives a pitch black sheen.
 

Naprawiacz

Active member
Hello everyone.Today I got this recipe: yellow beeswax 40g

powdered mastic 25g

rosin powder 30g

shoemaker's tar 10g

Syrian asphalt 25g

hard all ingredients grind thoroughly

in the first vessel dissolve the first four ingredients

Dissolve the asphalt in the second vessel and pour it from the first vessel into the second

to make it more difficult add 3-4 parts of sheep or beef tallow for 5 parts

you can also add shellac instead of rosin

It is dissolved in turpentine.
 

Sandmann

Well-known member
Dear Naprawiacz,
thank you for your additonal recipe, but would you please add the contemporary source? Intention of this post was to conserve original recipes of Pickelhaube-Lacquers, from the time of manufacturing. I believe that these helmets are history and when restored, they should be restored as original as possible. That's why I started this post, to help that restorations could be as contemporary as possible. It's not just the look of the helmet which should be conserved. Thank you again.
 

Naprawiacz

Active member
Dear Sandmann, the recipe comes from a German art restorer born before the war, who was told the recipe by his father, who worked around 1910 in some manufacture. After the war he stayed in Poland and worked as a professional art restorer.That's all I know,but I will try to find out more.Regards Wojtek.
 

Naprawiacz

Active member
The backing recipe from Sandy was slightly modified.Paper glue was mixed with wood glue and water was added.The whole thing was mixed and black from the vine was added.Three layers were applied with a paint roller.The polish scraped off the helmet was dissolved in spirit and applied with a paint roller and polished with pumice stone dust.
 

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Sandmann

Well-known member
Hmm, looks like this recipe was not successful because there is no shiny finish. Sorry for that, but thank you for testing.
Was it the last one?
 

Naprawiacz

Active member
Sandy the photos show the primer for the actual polish.This is what the structure looks like after painting with the original shellac from pickelhaube mixed in spirit,
 

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Sandmann

Well-known member
Ah ok, I thought the left picture shows the polished finish :eek: . In this case the result looks great, well done (y)
Wojtek, have you also seen the variations of the leather lacquers below my last recipe, on the following pages? Very interesting with wax or Asphalt to get a slightly thicker consistency.
 

Naprawiacz

Active member
Sandy we are using your 1845 recipes with a colleague.We are testing three recipes and the results are promising.When we finish testing I will do a full description and send you pictures.Regards
Wojtek
 
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