Hello Marguerite - Any stainless steel burnisher will do. When I
took the kum-boo workshop with Komelia Okim - as I recall, she used
the standard jewelery burnishers that are available through all
suppliers. I don’t have a memory of her using burnishers
specifically from Korea.
Through trial and error, one of my favorite burnishers is a
stainless wax tool - the one with a small oval spoon shape on one end
- with a bulge of steel just to the back of the spoon shape for the
purpose of holding heat to keep wax melted. I polished and rounded
any sharpness in the edges of the bowl of the spoon - to make it very
smooth for the kum-boo process. (I no longer use this particular
tool for wax.) When I dunk this tool in the water (as is necessary
throughout the burnishing process) I will carry water in the bowl of
the tiny spoon to the piece and let it bubble off while burnishing.
The great theory here is that perhaps it keeps the steel a bit cooler
for a little longer! At any rate, the tool works well for
burnishing small pieces of gold.
Another of my currently favorite kum-boo tools is a broken stainless
dental tool that I rounded off by sanding and polishing the broken
end. It works great as a holding tool - by stabilizing the gold
while burnishing with the other hand. It also works well for final
touch burnishing of small bubbles. This one is just a straight tool
with a tapered end - so, the polished end is really very small.
If I am burnishing larger pieces of gold foil then I would use a
standard jeweler’s burnisher with the wooden handles. And, through
experience, I have found that keeping the burnishing tool nicely
polished makes a difference.
So, I would look just check through your tools and see what might
work and give it a try! Just clean and polish the burnishing surface
nicely. Perhaps the Korean burnishers have longer handles to keep
your hands a little further from the heat source - that would be
helpful. But, these others have worked well for me.