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Re: Chinese pounding brushed


Those cylindrical pounding brushes are made of the fibrous bark of palm
trees and arestitched together with that same fiber rolled into cord.  The
Chinese name is literally "Palm fiber tiger" (zong laohu).  These brushes
are used for exactly what everyone has said they are using them for, to get
two surfaces to adhere well.  In China scroll mounters use this cylindrical
style brush for small places when the larger flat brushes made of the same
palm fiber would be cumbersome.

    You can get these guys to stop shedding bits of the bark by boiling the
brushes in a salt solution, changing the water a couple of times until the
brown color no longer comes out into the water.  Then boil the brushes in
plain water, changing the water once or twice.  Let the brushes dry in an
airy place.  Some binders in China will also trim the outer rim of the
brushes a bit, much as one would trim a moustache, to get rid of any sharp
edges.  But then, use will wear them in a bit, too.

    The flat brushes made of palm bark fiber are great for laminating sheets
of paper, especially thin Chinese calligraphy paper.  Despite their seeming
stiffness, they don't tear the paper.

Bookbinding tools are so great.

Nancy Tomasko

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