FORMULATION TAKEN TO THE NEXT LEVEL
MARINE GRADE FINISH - all applications for lakeside, seashore, and boat building; as well as...
GROUND CONTACT - at and below grade construction.
INTERIOR FINISH - also made with the same microbial and UV additives used in the Exterior Finish - additives that are safe, effective, and odorless.
For years I have been working to improve all of my finishes in several ways. My first goal was to completely remove all chemical UVA's and anti-microbials, replacing them with raw materials having concentrated, complex phytochemical profiles. These are safe, effective compounds that are produced by trees and plants, bees, and (coniferous) pine trees. Earth elements found in certain mineral deposits containing zinc, calcium, manganese, and boron are also used. They are safe, time tested products that are very effective as biocides and UV blockers.
These protect wood from decay, fungi, UV degradation, sapstain, and insect damage. These particular mineral and metallic salts are known and documented for their anti-microbial and UV efficacy, and they are found in all mammals. I have also upgraded the quality of the materials used, such as the linseed oil that now remains mucilage free, even after sitting outside my shop undergoing more than two years of intense UV exposure, decantation, heating, and freezing.
I have also added a second rosin that is optional; it can be added to any of the finishes. It is the premium of all tree rosins. The best is produced in only several areas globally. Its extracted in liquid form directly from the aged remains of only several species.
It is dark, with a strong, pungent odor (nearly identical to Lapsang Souchong tea), one reminiscent of the sights and smells of ship yards from a bygone era, where it was used on rope, sails, metal, and wood. It is one step away, albeit one of many, many decades, from becoming fossilized amber. It has been used by shipwrights for centuries in building all forms of wooden boatcraft. It contains neither creosote nor tar pitch.
The next step was learning how to make the rosins, minerals, and solvents into a rosin matrix that is bonded at the molecular level, instead of using glycol or ester based dispersing agents and micronized particles that merely produce a fine particulate dispersion, while adulterating the finish with these dispersants that impede both the absorption and the true curing - polymerization - of the finish into the wood fibre.
Because of the minerals in the rosin matrix, the drying time for land ark is now shorter. These combined minerals act as a safe, effective drying agent. The main complaint from customers - drying time - is no longer a significant issue. And with a good dual action buffer, the finishes can now quickly 'build' if desired as a true penetrating oil varnish without the cracking and crazing that is typical of synthetic alkyd resins, which are essentially a few steps away from being nothing more than a plastic.
Whether synthetic or organic, a resin-rosin base is the foundation of any high-grade wood finish. This is a brief summary of the composition of the rosin matrix of Land Ark Wood Finish. I know of no other finish using ingredients of this quality, combined with this centuries-old manufacturing method, that has ever before been formulated quite like this.
LAND ARK IS MADE FROM:
Tung Oil; superior Chinese: 100% pure with no additives; highest quality I have ever seen in forty years of finishing wood. It has a fresh, fruity, nut-like fragrance. It is purchased by a company whose owner travels to China by invitation to bid on 80 drum lots, much like buying tea or coffee. Tung oil dries harder and is more durable than linseed oil alone. Both of the oils used are drier-free, and cross-linked as an oil, rosin, terpenes, and mineral martix.
Cleaned, purified Raw Linseed Oil: Purified and refined by natural oxidation, straining, and decantation, with no remaining mucilage sediment. even after two years’ decantation in freezing winters and hot summers.; dries as clear or clearer than tung oil, with none of the characteristic discoloration that is typical of hardware store varieties. No other finishing oil penetrates as deeply into wood. When mixed properly in the correct ratio, the linseed makes the tung oil much more stable. I had to quit using linseed oil for several years, because there was none to be found stateside of this grade. Now, we have it.
Beeswax: Filtered, but unrefined. chemical and bleach-free cappings wax only is used; beeswax adds visual depth of grain, smoothness, and elastic durability to the finish; it also forms a skim coat that keeps the finish on the wood, slowing the evaporation of the solvent, and thus giving the oils more time for absorption. Beeswax has a very complex phytochemistry that is often removed from the wax by excessive refinement. Parts of Viking ships, 2000 years old protected with beeswax have been found.
Orange Terpenes: Food grade; apart from reagent grade, this is the purest form of citrus terpenes (citrus solvent), and it is extracted only from the cold-pressed oil of the orange peel. It is the main solvent used in Land Ark finishes.
Balsam or Pine Terpenes (Balsam Fir or Slash Pine): Only the best grades are used - none of the hardware store junk. It will bind with oils and rosins in ways that the citrus alone simply cannot do, becoming part of the rosin base, and integral to its formation.
Mineral and Gum rosin matrix: the same rosin as I used before, extracted from the sap of the pine tree; crystal free, water white grade; then cross-linked with zinc and other minerals that are bound to the rosin molecule.
Filtered, Unrefined liquid Rosin: This is the premium of all rosins, rich in compounds (phytochemicals) produced by the tree for repelling insects, repairing the cambium and bark layers, and killing disease spores. This is the rosin extracted in liquid form from only several particular trees that are cut, fallen, or left dead standing by an ancient manufacturing process that has been all but lost to to modern petro-chemical paint manufacturing. It is dark and quite pungent, but it is hands down the best single raw material that can be put in a solvent-based finish. It also stabilizes the entire formulation, reducing problems that can occur with nutseed oil finishes, such as hazing or blooming (absorption of water vapor) when drying. Because of this product, and the mineral-rosin matrix, there are now new products for extreme duty exterior and marine environments; ground contact and below grade treatment of wood; and for boat building and refinishing.