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refinishing the tub

Just some general advice please – the tub is looking tired and I was considering sanding it to bring back some luster to the wood.
I was planning on using an orbital sander and wooden sanding block. I have not oiled the tub and is this something I should be doing at least on the outside?
If so, what oil do you recommend?
I recommend to let the tub dry and sand with medium and fine grit.
Then, we recommend the application of a water-repellent which is colorless, matte finish and will not block the wood aroma.
It is a non-coating treatment and penetrates in the wood fibers letting it breath (like “goretex” for fabric…).
We recommend to finish the Hinoki tub with water repellent
KIHADAICHIBAN (preservative agent for wood) :

a) 7,000. JPY / 1L + 4,500. JPY (Packaging + EMS) + Paypal fee = 12,000 JPY
Please let me know.
Best regards,
iacopo torrini

Information package

1)Production and shipping time:
All our tubs are made in Japan by a skilled 4th generation craftsman. The standard production queue is about 15days . For the shipping and delivery consider + 30 days (ocean freight) or + 10 days (airfreight) for most world locations.

2) Payment contitions:
Invoices and payments will be Japanese Yen. This is to avoid overcharges to our clients due to currency exchange fluctuation risk. A prepayment of 50% of the custom items will be needed before starting production. Once the products are ready, we will send pictures for verification/approval and will require the payment of the reminder before proceeding with shipment. A Bank wire transfer is the most common option. Credit cards are accepted (thru Paypal). Checks are not available. For larger orders a Letter of Credit can be taken into consideration.

3) Shipping cost:
we will need the exact shipping address to be able to obtain the quote from our forwarder (Naigai Forwarding Co.)
We use DDU (Delivered, Duties Unpaid) conditions unless the client requires a different arrangement. Cost varies greatly according to size, country, delivery location. You are welcome to use your local forwarder for the shipment.

4)Installation recommendation:
In case of humid climates, we recommend to leave enough room under the tub to allow air circulation (about 10cm).
For dry climates, avoid direct sunlight exposure and abrupt temperature changes – especially when the tub is empty.

5)Maintenance recommendation:
Please refer also to the FAQ on our homepage and the “Japanese ofuro maintenance tips” notes.
Provide a satisfactory ventilation for the bathroom (natural air circulation with cross ventilation is the best), anyway avoid use of air conditioning in the bathroom, especially when it is empty and not in use. A A/C can dry up the natural humidity of the wood in a matter of few days…!
As soap, detergents and dirt are responsible for the insurgence of mold and fungi, we recommend not to use soap inside the tub, and to wipe it after use with a soft sponge or towel.
Unless otherwise specified, we apply one layer of “Kihada Ichiban” which is an hydrorepellent treatment, based on the nanotechnology. It does not create a coat, it actually penetrates inside offering lasting protection whithout occluding the pores of wood.

6) Installation: the tub should sit on 4 concrete blocks or bricks placed at the perimeter (corners) of the tub. Supports are not needed in the center. This detail allows for air circulation under the tub while preserving the wood from prolonged direct exposure to water.

7) Recommended sanitary fixtures:
Water fixtures can be installed on the wall (directing the water into the tub), on the floor (long hook type), on the tub ledge or thru a spout. In the first two cases, you do not need any interaction with the tubs and can choose the taps freely (Philip Stark design taps for instance are a common choice). In the 3rd case (on tub ledge) the issue
is similar to the first two as you can open a hole where needed in top ledge as it is all solid wood. In case you consider using of a wooden spout, please let me know and I will explain you the options.

8) Certifications:
We can provide declarations stating the origin and quality of the wood.
If you need an official “certificate of origin” from the japanese chamber of commerce or a “phytosanitary certificate” from third party laboratory it may be available at a cost.

slanted ofuro 3D

Is the ofuro free standing?
Or is it built into a ledge?
Since it has a slanted edge, do you see it from outside?

We had problems explaining the image to the client so we resorted to sketchup and everything was easy!

It is drafted quite roughly, but if you want you can download the model below from the sketchup warehouse.
We also have another couple of models in the warehouse. Search with “bartok” as keyword, you should find them.

161019-ofuro-3D-side

161019-ofuro-3D-top

161019-ofuro-3D-front

2 times water repellent?

Is the product that you use to make the wood water-repellant available to purchase for continuing the practice – or is it a one-time product (only to be applied when the tub is new) ?
The water repellent “Kihada ichi-ban” this is used only to finish the new product. Since it penetrates inside the wood fibers it would not be absorbed if applied multiple times.

step/bench for ofuro

Do you have a photo of the step/bench as it relates to the tub?

Step-benches (as the name says) can be used both to easily enter/egress the tub and as a place to sit and relax after the tub. Of course it can be used also to hold some towels or even your champagne bucket…
The sizes are custom made to match your space and way of use.

Please find here below some examples of tub/bench combinations.

Hinoki 500x400x400H

http://www.bartokdesign.com/japan/hb-gallery/IMGP8109.JPG”>
Hinoki 400x320x300H


Hinoki 609x450x648H
This is particular. We made it with the height to match the height of the tub.


Hinoki 600x300x300H

ofuro for the elderly

Nowadays wooden bathtubs are popular in rehabilitation facilities and retirement homes for the elderly.
Wood is soft and warm and it is very appreciated especially by people with pain or physical limitations.
Here below are two examples. it is easy to mount railings or neck holder fixtures.
elderly3
Also, it is common to install a movable partition inside to adjust the size. This way it can be used by multiple people as well as singularly.
elderly2
The worry is that if the tub is too big, elderly people may slip inside the tub and drown.
For this reason it is recommended to use a size so that you can reach the back end of the tub with your feet.
elderly1
This thinking is recommended in general while it is not really necessary for an adult/fit person.

approx cost for sushi counter

Hello,
I am interested in a custom hinoki sushi bar counter ( 21’x2′) for a restaurant. I would like to find out a rough estimate (cost of the item as well as shipping, tax, etc). Please let me know.
Thank you!
Thank you for your inquiry!
Are you looking for a counter in solid lumber or veneered?
Let me give you a rough idea about the 2 options.
1) solid counter (imagine a sushi bar in Tokyo Ginza…):
it is difficult to find lumber to match exactly the request.
You would have to cut the length or the width which is a waste.
Usually designers look for a lumber of a size close to the request and then match the design of the shop.
For your reference a lumber 20 Ft. long would be around 8-10 million jpy .

2 ) laminated counter covered with hinoki thick veneer(5mm).
In this case of course we can make a counter to match your sizes (maximum length is 22Ft.) in this case the cost would be about 3 million JPY.

We are looking forward to working with you and remain at your disposal for any question/problem.

“longed for” ofuro to australia

Sometimes we deal with architect offices or construction companies, often we deal with end users.
Some clients are rationally minded business owners who have an organized mentality.
Some clients are carrying on their house remodeling and are very excited about the details.

Each tub has its own story which is what makes my work of “bridge between two cultures” so meaningful and rewarding.
IMGP9188

This tub belongs to very enthusiastic client who knows what she wants and can communicate it very well.
Every email from the client it is like an energizing potion that leaves me fully recharged for the whole day…!
After about 3 weeks from the first email the tub is completed and ready to be shipped! It is a beautiful custom size kadomaru tub (see the details below)
IMGP9186

Material is sawara cypress. The difference of color between the different planks is minimal, but because the wood fibers reflect the light with different angles when taking a photo the contrast appears increased.
IMGP9189

Hot water will release a soothing aroma out of the straight grain of this sawara wood.

Here are the specs:

material: japanese Knotless Sawara cypress wood bathtub

shape: kadomaru with customs sizes

sizes:  L1100mm x W630mm x 740mm (630mm deep)

details: stainless steel wire bands. Iron brand at front top-right

P.S.

I just sent the photos to the client who immediately replied:

“Please send as soon as you can!”

I am sure the ofuro is going to be pampered in his new home in Australia!

flooring for Singapore house

We were contacted by an architect renovating his home in Singapore.
The client was keen on hinoki material but did not like the traditional “white-pink melange” look of japanese evergreens.
After considering several options, the client opted for a more expensive “all heartwood” material.
The sapwood is eliminated before sawing and milling the planks so the color is more uniform and the lumber itself is harder.
IMGP9158
We milled a tongue and grove on the long sides but did not manufacture the end matching joint (the planks would have become about 4cm shorter and would not fit the module of the project)
IMGP9155
Also, we were requested not to bevel the edges. Our grumpy carpenter was quite uneasy about this (eliminating the corners make the flooring look more regular and prevents indenting of the edges during installation)
But we agreed that everybody would manipulate and install the planks with the utmost care and were able to manufacture the custom “perfectly flat” product.
IMGP9153
The specs/sizes of the flooring are:
material: hinoki (Yoshino-Nara pref.) all heartwood
size: 2000mm x 150mm x 15mm.

I am looking forward to seeing the completed room!
IMGP9150

remote control system for ofuro

Our current tub has a section on the side with filter, pump, heater, cleaner, and controls. I would prefer to have a remote system that would drain the tub after use into a temperature controlled, insulated holding tank, that would have a pump to refill the tub just before using. I saw that you had a drawing of a similar system. Would it be possible to get an email link with the people who did or used that design? We also would like a cutout on the top of the tub for controlled overflow to a drain.
How would you recommend doing that in such a way that it looked good and the water wouldn\’t stain the tub? Ideally everything I do will last 50+ years (except for the electronics – which is unrealistic for now).
Thanks in advance
About the equipment part (pump, filter, disinfection system, post-heating etc.) we cannot supply it.
You will have to ask a spa equipment company in maui to custom make for you a system. I hear that most people use ozone purifiers for wooden tubs.

About filling, heating and recirculating systems (very common in japanese households) we cannot supply it as we would not be able to do the maintenance/send spare parts. So again, you will have to have a custom made one. You can set up very easily a system with solenoid valves and magnet switches or software controlled (LAN) automation.

About the longevity: we treat the tubs with a water repellent full penetration product which add to the natural hinoki performance against rot and mold. Said so, I think that you should consider a life-span of 10-15 years for a tub used outdoors.

We are looking forward to working with you and remain at your disposal for any problem/question.

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