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I made pine sap plastic...what do I do with it? Answered

 I went out to my woods are got a huge lump of pine resin. I melted it in a steel tin, and fished off the top layer of woodchips with a nail. After that, I made what looks EXACTLY like maple syrup...so I poured it onto a parchment sheet. After it cooled, it looked like amber! I seems to shrink a microscopic bit as it cools, so it practically fell off the parchment sheet as a rock hard lens.

At this point, it's an amber colored plastic lens. It's hard as a rock, and chips if you drop it.
I put it in warm water...AND IT GETS AS SOFT AS PLASTICINE! It has a fantastic texture...like taffy. It's hard to resist the urge to eat it...it looks like candy!

Anyway, I shaped it into all kinds of things and let it cool down (in like a second, it's hard again)
When it's cooled, it has a mild tackyness to it. I made a marble out of it and put a tiny bit of lip-balm on it. Not sticky anymore!

This material has OBVIOUSLY been discovered before, so does it have a name? Amber gum? tar?




Best Answer 8 years ago

Have you read the Wikipedia article on resin?  From your procedure (in particular melting to liquid) it sounds like you made rosin.

 It sure is rosin! This stuff reminded me of something, but I couldn't quite put my finger on it. Then your post reminded me... my sister used to play violin, and she had a block of 'rosin' for the bow. This feels and looks exactly like it!

What can you do with jack fruit sap in making an insect trap?

I knew someone who used to chew pine tar as a substitute for chewing gum. I really wouldn't recommend that until you do a health check, though; plants can have some nasty chemicals in an attempt to discourage things from eating them.

 Before it's been heated, the pine sap tastes AWEFULL. It's quite possibly the most bitter thing on the planet. After it's been heated, it tastes like nothing..

Welcome to the wonderful world of science!   Don't stop now that you have found your stride!  Use what you learn from Google and keep experimenting.

What you've got is called copal.  If it's left for a long time under pressure it fossilises and becomes amber.
If it hardens enough when cool (there may be ways of making it harder) you could embed insects in it and make ornaments or jewellery like THIS.  Insects from millions of years ago have been found trapped in amber, perfectly preserved.

Wow sounds awesome, sounds similar to rosin (as kelseymh suggests) but sounds slightly different. I'd like up stone age uses for rosin / tree sap for things to do with it!

You can use it to fix (e.g. flint) blades to sticks = weapons.
Pine tar


That's cool!!!!