Introduction: Making Pine Rosin

Picture of Making Pine Rosin

Are you a violinist, cellist, athlete, artist, electronics pro or plumber? If you are you might use Rosin for grip, making better sound and all that kind of stuff. Does the rosin you use cost money? Well today I'm gonna try my best "WINK WINK" to teach you how to make it on your own.

Step 1: Supplies

Picture of Supplies

You don't need that many supplies, but you need some, you need...

- Resin

Find a damaged pine tree and gently collect the resin with a dull knife. The stuff is sticky and hard to wash out, so rubber gloves can really help.

- Resin Burner

We used a small tin can (2″ diameter), turned the lid into a sieve using a hummer and a nail to pierce it. Make sure it’s plain uncovered tin inside, otherwise the coating substance would melt down and spoil your rosin.

- Aluminum Foil

Step 2: Getting the Resin Burner Ready

Picture of Getting the Resin Burner Ready

Line the inside of the tin can with aluminum foil.

Step 3: Burn It

Picture of Burn It

Assemble the resin burner and place your resin into the ‘sieve’. Fire it. Crude resin does not start burning right away, be patient.

The high and quite impressive flame is produced by turpentine. All unneeded inclusions will burn out. It melts, smokes and boils, and your pure rosin leaks down through the holes onto the foil.

Step 4: Enjoy!

Picture of Enjoy!

Here is your finished product. HOPE YOU ENJOY!


lukas_goossens (author)2016-11-30

is the rosin clear? can you see thru ?

It is semi-transparent, you may see light coming through it, but not as clear as a glass.

JeffS38 (author)2015-07-24

I plan on making some as we have a pine tree in our backyard. I want to see if this will add some friction between the rubber belt and wooden roller brush on our vacuum cleaner. A new belt is probably all I need but I thought that by adding some rosin it will help even more. I got the idea after noticing the belt slipping on the roller while vacuuming my parents thick carpet yesterday...

overcomer8 (author)2014-10-26

I'm still a little confused what I would use this for since I'm not a musician...are there purposes I could use it for in the home?

blooming_fern (author)overcomer82014-10-27

I'm not sure the rosin is a useful *household item*. It has multiple uses not only for those who play violin or need a reliable dance floor, there are people who use it for soldering, artists use rosin for their oil paints, etc. As for me, I knew rosin since I was born, because my grandma, a theatrical makeup artist, used rosin to glue fake noses and beards onto actors faces. And I added rosin into my own home made soap. Looks like endless opportunities, that rosin. But not about a home, I'm afraid.

overcomer8 (author)blooming_fern2014-10-27

Thank you so much...thanks for sharing your talent and knowledge! = )

MINECRAFT IS AWSOME (author)2014-10-27

I can use it on my cellos bow and its safe to use it on the bow without it damaging the bow. And if you comment saying you could get another one really the bow can cost $30 to $100 dollars depending on the way its made but thanks for this tutorial.

Jugfet (author)2014-10-14

I use methylated spirit to remove pine resin from my power tool blades, router bits and my hands. Works a treat.

eruger (author)Jugfet2014-10-14

I'm glad I'm not the only one who still remembers that pine pitch will dull and pit your tools if you don't clean it off :) Never heard of that solvent, have to look it up thanks!

Jugfet (author)eruger2014-10-15

Jugfet says:

I'm in the UK and Methylated spirit is basically Methyl Alcohol. It is sold with an added purple pigment and an emetic to stop people from drinking the stuff and going blind.
The stuff really stinks and hangs about afterward, but it's cheap and cleans circular saw blades a treat.This stops the resin burning and overheating the blades, or your router bits, and keeps the cutting edge clean.
It may well be known under a different name in other parts of the


kymyst (author)Jugfet2014-10-21

Methylated Spirit is not Methyl Alcohol, it is approximately 95 % Ethanol with a little denaturant and dye added, plus some water. The denaturant may or may not be methyl alcohol, other substances are commonly used. The additive to stop people from drinking it is a quaternary ammonium salt called "Bitrex", it makes it taste extremely bitter.

stoobers (author)eruger2014-10-15

This is also called: methyl alcohol, methanol,wood alcohol, etc.

eruger (author)stoobers2014-10-15

Cool, thank!I forgot to look it up.

eruger (author)Jugfet2014-10-15

Finally looked it up and here in California it's sold as Denatured Alcohol. I've used it as fuel and a solvent in waxwork, but never tried it on pitch. Oddly, my Dad an Grandpa, fairly knowledgeable guys, both used turpentine (turps, mineral spirits) which really doesn't work very well.

kudzu63 (author)2014-10-16

I'm thinking that this rosin is the same thing as what we call sap from a pine tree. If you get it on anything, you can get it out pretty easily with a squirt of WD40. Just a little rubbing and it's all off.

blooming_fern (author)kudzu632014-10-16

I'm afraid you're confusing three different things: pine sap (clear liquid, serves nutritive functions in the tree), pine resin (gooey substance, protects the tree's wounds) and pine rosin (translucent solid product made from resin).

kudzu63 (author)blooming_fern2014-10-19

Well either way clean up is easy with a squirt of WD40.

Dave5020 (author)2014-10-15

Rubbing alcohol (Isopropyl alcohol) works very well to wash off pitch. Then its just a matter of washing with soap and water.

blooming_fern (author)2014-10-14

We are no short of pine trees here, eh. Industrially, they extract rosin with chemicals and save turpentine which is a valuable product, too. We opted for burning just to amaze kids and propel their interest into the projects where we planned to use rosin.

carver166 (author)2014-10-14

The simplest way to remove pinesap from your skin or clothes is to rub in a little bit of oil or fat. Butter, olive, mineral, animal fat. This will dissolve the sap and is then washed away with plain water and soap.

my wookie (author)carver1662014-10-14

of course then you have to figure out how to get the oil or fat off

carver166 (author)my wookie2014-10-14

That's where the soap and water comes in...all gone. Then dry.

carver166 (author)carver1662014-10-14

Emphasis on "a little bit of oil".

AC0KG1 (author)2014-10-14

"Find a damaged pine tree and gently collect the resin"

A picture of this step would be helpful.

blooming_fern (author)AC0KG12014-10-14

Here, in my blog:

snoopindaweb (author)2014-10-14

I've Got about a half pound or so in one of My junk boxes stacked in one of the closets "efficacy apartment:. Now I'll be searching for it moving and digging through every box till I find it. ~(:-})={ --- ]

who1buffy (author)2014-10-14

That's really cool!

repworth (author)2014-10-14

One word of warning, do provide plenty of ventilation while cooking the stuff. Some people become allergic to the fumes of colopheny, which is why it is banned in modern solder. Prolonged exposure can can cause a severe allergic resonse in the form of asthma.

My friend (who had been soldering in a confined space for some weeks previously) only discovered this when he tried to dig up a Christmas tree. The slight Pine resin fumes triggered a big asthma attack.

blooming_fern (author)repworth2014-10-14

That's a good notice, thank you, I forgot to mention that in my instructable. We did the cooking outdoors for a reason.

rpotts2 (author)2014-10-11

And you can use it for soldering also! just crush the refined stuff into as small of pieces as you can, then dissolve them in alcohol. you must experiment with the strength, but this makes an excellent rosin for cleaning traces as you lay down your chips and caps!

sydkahn (author)rpotts22014-10-14

Some more information on how to make DIY solder flux...

spark master (author)sydkahn2014-10-14

the link (and others ) say to use isoproply alcohol, unless it will not dissolve in Methanol , use that instead. As someone who has alky stoves, isopropyl alkie stinks just use methol alcohol, yellow bottle of HEET for your car. Or buy it in paint section of any big box store. No soot, no stink. give it a whirl. You could also use Ethanol, but you must use 130 proof or so, and do you want to give up drinking spirits for rosin?

blooming_fern (author)sydkahn2014-10-14

Cool! Thanks for sharing!

agis68 (author)2014-10-14

every summer i collect atleast 5-6pounds (2,5-3,2kg) of natural pine rosin. I am using it in electronics, (masking the finished pcb and parts) and in hobies (jewlery, and staff) it's very simple to collect it and its free....

blooming_fern (author)agis682014-10-14

Wow, 5-6 pounds! I thought I was lucky to collect about a pound of it last summer...

agis68 (author)agis682014-10-14

forgot to tell an excellent use is to make your own ecological flux for your soldering iron. As liquid diluted with alcohol in 20% dilution. And then just touch the hot nose of the soldering iron to the flux (colophonioum) Anyway thnks for sharing

kewpiedoll99 (author)2014-10-14

is it really blue or is that just a trick of the light in the photo? if so, why is it blue?

That's a reflection of the sky. The rosin is like a piece of deep brown glass, clear with no inclusions, it produces a mirror effect under a certain angle.

Beautiful! I remember that lovely deep brown color of rosin from when I played the cello as a kid. Nice i'ble!

DDW_OR (author)2014-10-14

Baby oil is also good for removing Resin "tree sap" from your hands

kewpiedoll99 (author)DDW_OR2014-10-14

agreed! and the residue from athletic tape as well.

vreinkymov (author)2014-10-11

Great design! I found that ammonia (ammonium hydroxide) that you can use for cleaning works well for washing the sap / rosin off of things.

Locomiguel (author)vreinkymov2014-10-12

Another excellent product for removing sap and the like is the skin cleaning product called TECNU that is marketed for removing the Urusiols (the poison part of poison oak, ivy and sumac) from the skin after exposure. I believe it is available only in the US and Canada however. An interesting aside is that this product was developed in the 60's to remove radioactive fallout from the skin, back before the days of mutually assured total destruction made that idea something of a naive thought.

I wonder if Fels-Naptha would also work then?

Gregbot (author)2014-10-12


Random_Canadian (author)2014-10-11

As an electro mech designer, I approve!

tinaciousz (author)2014-10-11

I have fond memories of sprinkling powdered rosin on the dance floor to keep me from slipping in my pointe shoes. Now I use rosin to make aquatint prints in my printmaking class. Such a versatile substance!

blooming_fern (author)tinaciousz2014-10-11

And we used it for soap making!

MsSweetSatisfaction (author)2014-10-11

That's so cool that you can make that! Thanks for sharing your amazing knowledge!

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