Thursday, 30 November 2006


I thought I'd post a tutorial on how to pitch stuff. Not rocket science, but there are a few handy tricks. Sorry for the poor quality on the pictures. I shouldn't have used the flash.

First you need pitch. Old dry, crumbly stuff is not very good. Use as soft and fresh pitch as possible. Here are some small lumps on a Norway spruce.

Have a flat rock by the fire, finely crush some charcoal and melt the pitch ontop of it. Mix it together when properly melted.

Though the name is pitch glue, my most frequent use is as a sealant. On fishing hooks to avoid knots and lashings loosening in water. Smear the glue over the binding you want sealed and quickly run over the pitch with your moistened fingres to smooth it over. Repeat the process until all is covered.

If the results aren't satisfyingly smooth and/or the layer is too thick, pull the rock out of the fire and use one of the hotter sides to gently roll it against so the pitch will even out and the excess run off. While it is still hot, quench it on your moist fingers to achieve an even smoother finish.

The rest of the pitch can be rolled up around a stick and be stored for later. Here is an image of the pitched hooks. The pitch stick is on the right.