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Japanese lantern made of Hypertufa

11 years ago

Just wanted to say thanks for the help making my first Hypertufa project a successful one and share my progress. Maybe it can help someone else in the future.

So this project started because I wanted a Japanese lantern in my garden but once I found out you can't find one for under $1000, at least the size I wanted, I decided to try making my own. At that point I never heard of hypertufa and was going to use concrete. Once I started researching I found out about hypertufa and then this forum. Anyway, I learned a lot here and decided on what I thought was a good recipe, adding my own touch of course and couldn't be happier!

The mix:

1 part peat moss
1 part perlite
1 part portland cement
1 part black blast(looks like black sand)
1/3 concrete bonding additive
and a handful of synthetic fiber mesh for the larger pieces that I thought could use the extra strength, base & top

So far it seems to be working out as the perfect mix I was looking for. I wanted strong, heavy and to look like granite stone. So far it seems strong, it is very heavy but not quite as bad as concrete and the finished look is pretty nice in my opinion, of course it doesn't look exactly like granite but way more interesting than concrete.

I started simple, just tried the little round topper piece to make sure the mix was good and see what I was getting myself into. I just used a medium size bowl, filled it about 1 1/2" and let it set for a day. Popped it out and was pretty dissapointed with the look. Then I found out the trick, electric drill with a hard wire bruch bit. Sanded down all the dull finish and got a pretty nice looking spotty with black specks and little craters finish. Very cool stuff, but a lot more work than I thought.

Next I started making molds for all the other pieces, most out of wood but had to get creative for a few, grill cover, large planter with carved styrofoam mold and so on. I have everything made except the top which I'm still designing but wanted to share my progress so far. I have a ton of pics but I'm not sure how many I can post. I'll try a few to start and add more later including a finished product eventually.

If you have any questions let me know.


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