Transform Charcoal Ash Into Homemade Putty

Charcoal ash can be used for the surprisingly utilitarian purpose of concocting homemade putty.

| February/March 2014

While cleaning my barbecue grill, I noticed that the gray ash of the charcoal has the same feeling as whiting, also known as calcium carbonate (or chalk). 

Whiting is sold in paint stores and is the basic ingredient in window putty. I mixed the ash with some linseed oil and I got working homemade putty! This reminded me of my grandfather’s old adage: “A little putty, a little paint, makes it look like what it ain’t.”

Robert J. Raynor
Merrick, New York

mother earth news fair 2018 schedule


Next: April 28-29, 2018
Asheville, NC

Whether you want to learn how to grow and raise your own food, build your own root cellar, or create a green dream home, come out and learn everything you need to know — and then some!