Blog

ofuro for Cape Town -2- start work

Continues from a previous post. Open the blog about “choosing the lumber” in a separate window.

We have been contacted by a private client in South Africa about 3 years ago.
He was going to build a new house overlooking the sea and wanted a japanese bathtub.
Apparently it took more than expected for the permits and to start construction but he got back to us and placed the order. We have a comfortable time frame but since we will ship by ocean freight we started construction:
IMG_0054
First the planks are planed

IMG_0057
Then the material to compose the side walls is selected also considering the grain direction (both to avoid warping and for the aesthetic balance)

IMG_0060
Then thru-holes are opened in the sections of the planks

IMG_0061
and the different parts are composed together with the aid of wood dowels and waterproof glue (only on the matching sections)

IMG_0063
The laminated side walls are pressed and left to rest for few days to dry and stabilize

<will continue…>

shipping using DHL, FEDEX, USHIP

IMGP9058

We shipped the round tub to singapore using DHL.
Recently Fedex and DHL are becoming more and more competitive costwise.

Also, we learned from a client a new way to find a competitive shipping company.
See the link below.
http://www.uship.com/ca/shipment/wooden-bathtub-httpbartokdesigncomproduc/657797908/

Basically, if I understand, you put tentatively your infomration and some shippers or other users (a kind of group-on?) contact you if there a good option of the possibility of consolidating the shipping.

Best luck!

koyamaki tubs for singapore

We produced 3 tubs for a spa in Singapore.

As we did not have stock of hinoki (it takes at least 2 months to natural dry the lumber) we proposed to use koyamaki wood.
Koyamaki is the most prized of the “5 trees of the kiso valley” (koyamaki, hinoki, asnaro, sawara, nezuko) and is even more rot-resistant (and more expensive) than hinoki.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sciadopitys

In this case, we used Koyamaki-B grade, with small knots on both sides. Koyamaki is more knotty than hinoki, thus a knotless koyamaki tub really becomes a premium item.

IMGP9087

I did not have time to take the photos in advance since time is tight and the tubs are being packaged.

IMGP9085

We are placing the accessories inside to contain the shipping volume as much as possible.

IMGP9086

The tubs will be equipped with ledge mounted spouts.

I am looking forward to see the tubs installed and of course … to rush to Singapore for a relaxing and aromatic plunge!

IMGP9046

Here are the specs for the tubs:

Material: Japanese Koyamaki B grade (quartersawn, small knots)

sizes: L1800mm x W1200 x H640mm (ext. dim.) 560mm(deep)

details: wooden dowels, copper apron, iron brand at top-right cornerHinoki

accessories: wood wall/ledge mounted spout D type

Sawara wood ladle with handle (180D 290H)

Hinoki wood traditional stool (300x180x200H)

Update!

Our clients, the Elements Wellness Spa in Centrepoint, Singapore have created a fun video showing the spa experience. It’s gorgeous!

“princely” ofuro for hong kong

A Japanese living in Hong Kong kindly coordinated on behalf of the owner the order or a large hinoki tub for a residence.

IMGP9025

The installation will be in a ledge so the also supplied the external panels to be mounted on site.

Yoshiyaki is now holding the front panel to show how to position it. I am skipping the photos of the other sides…

IMGP9031

Here are the pictures of how it looks before inatallation, with a double shell construction,

IMGP9041

the other side will be recessed in a tiled ledge.

IMGP9042

since the tub top frame is recessed on one side to direct the overflow in this direction, we added a base on one side to the cover planks.

IMGP9039

Finally, here are the specs:

Material: Hinoki wood AB grade tub
Size: L2000mm x W1000 x H1050mm (ext. dim.) 930mm(depth)
Details: wooden dowel, copper under apron, iron brand at front top-right over flow top cut,
Options: Apron boards panels (supplied separately)
1) Short side: 960 x 508 x 25t
2) foront side: 2000 x 508 x 20t
3) back side: 150 x 508 x 20t
Hinoki wood a removable internal seat W400mm

Accessories:
Hinoki wood traditional cover 1020*x200x21 (10pcs)
Hinoki wood traditional stool (300x180x200H):
Sawara wood ladle with handle (180D 290H)
Sawara wood large bucket(230D 120H)

IMGP9044

Replacement tub for Dallas

The client is going to replace his previous american made wooden tub which is leaking.
The tub is recessed in the ground so this tub matches the size exactly.
(Of course wood swells and contracts according to the seasons and air humidity so the dimensions allow for some clearance.)
IMGP9022
I think we exchanged 3 mails with the client: he had some questions about the thickness of the planks and the corner joint construction to compare with his present tub.
It was very pleasant to deal with him as his words were precise (even without using specialized terms) and his purpose was clear. I imagine he is very busy businessman but very efficient with his time.
This inspires me to be more focused and calm when taking decisions!

1)About the issue of the thickness of the planks, I added a FAQ which I hope may be of reference to those of you with the same doubt. -> https://bartokdesign.com/9-faqcomment/about-the-thickness-of-planks.php

2)For the latter, I addressed him to our videos corner in the “reference” section: https://youtu.be/ZDesC_Bk4iA
IMGP9024

And here are the specs for this project:

material: natural Japanese Hinoki AB grade bathtub (quarter sawn)
sizes: L1219mm x W660 x H710mm (ext. dim.) – depth 620mm
details: nat. oil apron, wood dowels. Iron brand on both sides
options: Hinoki wood traditional cover 680x203x18 (6pcs)
IMGP9026

Let me post here again a technical note about our mail server: we had some mail problems: for some reason, some emails I send to hotmail or gmail accounts are rejected without error messages. (I wonder if it is a keyword-based spam filter: some mails get thru, some don`t…). I am working on it. Meanwhile, if you are having problems in reaching us: please use my alternative mail address: iax1213 at gmail com.

About the thickness of planks

My current ofuro is constructed with is 41.39 mm and you propose 33 mm that is 8.39 mm thinner.
From your experience is 33 mm sufficient?
The next size we use for planks after the 33mm thickness is 42mm.
In case of a L=1200mm tub, unless for design reasons (beefy look) the
client asks for thicker planks, 33mm is more than enough.
Thinner planks will result in a lighter tub (which is easier to handle
at the time of assembly and maintenance/cleaning under the tub.)
Also thinner planks are less prone to cracking due to dryness.

We use a top frame construction for tubs longer than 1400mm and 42mm
planks for tubs over 1500mm.

Anyway, for your reference I prepared a quote in case of 42mm thick planks.
(…)

ofuro for Cape town -1- lumber choice

IMGP8951Today we prepared the lumber for another tub going to South Africa.

The material is asnaro (also known as hiba) wood.
We are currently working on other units so the lamination and assembly work will actually start at the beginning of september and should take about 2 weeks.

IMGP8954You can see some stains. This is not water but natural oil contained in the wood. This is the source of the aroma!
Also, the fact that the plank is blackish is the proof it is well seasoned and fully dry. Of course once planed it will show its white face. It is a very high quality lumber.

IMGP8956You can see the lumber is quarter sawn (parallel wood grain lines) and Mr. Ikeda is optimizing the cuts to mach as much as possible the bent line of the trunk
IMGP8958the sapwood area close to the bark is reduced as much as possible.
IMGP8963finally, this is material to build one ofuro  1500x750mm.

Tanoshimi ni matte kudasai! (Look forward to see it complete!)

Japanese ridge beam on Washington shore

I would like to publish here a mail I received from a lasdscape designer based in Portland.

image2

Hello Iacopo,

I’ve enjoyed your newsletters and information about your business. I thought I’d share this with you, as I begin to design a small structure using this ridge beam I extracted from the driftwood on the SE Washington shoreline yesterday. I believe it certainly is from 2011 tsunami. I’d like to honor its history and journey by giving it a renewed use, following the lines it dictates.

As I research how

it was used, I wonder if you would have a resource for me to consult that could indicate a likely representation of its position within a structure? I may have it figured out, but a few comments from a carpenter there would be quite meaningful.

Than you for any consideration and dialog.

Best,

Jon Ensign
Portland, Oregon

image1


I am so humbled and grateful! Thanks to this homepage I have the opportunity to get in touch with amazing people who share their passion for handcrafts and for japanese culture.
Life is wonderful! 😉

For the curious, here below is my answer:
(more…)

try yourself this ofuro in australia!

rb-australia
Customer`s comment:
Hi Yoshiaki-San,

I hope you are well. My house is now finished and the Japanese bath looks beautiful. Below is a link to the house. Please pass onto Torrini-San and let him know if he is in Australia he is welcome to stay at my house and experience the tranquility.

RB from Australia
http://www.greatoceanroadholidays.com.au/accommodation/2064


Iacopo`s answer:
Dear R:
The photo of the japanese tub is superb!
Did you use a professional photographer?
Also, do you think I can post it in the “testimonials” section of our homepage?

It would be great if I can post the link to the accomodation page: I am sure that ofuro lovers in Australia would have a great excuse to stay at your place.

Of course I appreciate your kind invitation.
I have never been to Australia yet, though it has been on the very top on my list of countries I would like to visit since my childhood!

Congratulations for your beautiful house and let`s keep in touch!

Best regards,

iacopo torrini

asnaro tub for Virginia

Everything started from a very kind and warm mail from a couple who “spent a little time in rural Japan and came to love the entire experience of Japanese bathing.”
We supplied some alternative quotes for asnaro and hinoki wood.

Here is a picture of the back side (scroll below to see the front side and accessories)

IMGP8940

Here is a photo of the immaculate interior with the drain along the long side (quite rare detail but actually very smart if you consider 2 people using the tub together):

IMGP8941

Here are the specs for the project:
material: natural Japanese Asnaro AB grade bathtub (quarter sawn)
sizes: L1300mm x W760 x H660mm (ext. dim.) – depth 565mm
details: nat. oil apron, wood dowels. Iron brand at front side top-right
option: ball-type drain plug

accessories:
– Asnaro wood tray 840x350x21 (apparently the client likes to read books while soaking! They must have found the secret of how to reach happiness while on this world!)
– Hinoki wood traditional stool (300x180x200H)
– Sawara wood large bucket(230D 120H)
– Asnaro wood floor grate 1440 x 900x H55mm (split in 2)

IMGP8943

A technical note: we had some mail problems: for some reason, some emails I send to hotmail or gmail accounts are rejected without error messages. (I wonder if it is a keyword-based spam filter: some mails get thru, some don`t…)

Anyway we could happily catch-up thru my personal gmail account (iax1213 at gmail com).
Everybody who has having problems in reaching us: please use the mail above.

Back to top