First we are going to fill this cup with rice chaff ash. The ash need to be pure, new, free of fillers or fiberglass strands. Of course we recommend the ash sold by the Baieido dealers because we selected this ash for it’s purity and it is the same ash used my many of the Incense Teachers in Japan. Not all ash is equal and we have found several stores selling inferior ash to save a few penny’s.
Next you want to fluff the ash with the metal chopsticks that come with most koudou utensil kits. Chopsticks are on the right next to the box.
Next we are going to create a hole in the center to place the charcoal. Note: The charcoal should be glowing with a white covering before placing in the ash. Next, place the charcoal level to the ash and begin to lightly cover with ash. Keep the ash fluffy and create a small mound over the charcoal bu pulling the ash from the edge of the cup to the center.
Later we will learn how to arrange and tamp the ash but for now I want you to place a mica plate at the top of the un-tamped mound and place a piece of sandalwood or aloeswood on the mica.