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Topic: Question regarding metal casting.  (Read 602 times)
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« on: January 12, 2006 07:08:58 PM »

I would like to try my hand at casting using metals, but I am unsure as to what kind of molds are and are not acceptable.  For example, I have a great mold that is used for casting polymer clay.  Do you think it would be ok to cast with it or should I make a cast, make a DIFFERENT mold of that cast, and use that? 

I would also like to try the mold with resin but I am fairly confident this would ruin the mold.

Advice? Huh

Diane B.
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« Reply #1 on: January 13, 2006 11:15:09 AM »

I'm not that familiar with casting metals, but I presume they get really hot, so could be different from molds you may have used with polymer clay.

There are lots of molds that can be used for polymer clay too (even other polymer clay), so which one do you have ... some might work and many prob. won't.  If you were using metal, glass, or even silicone molds, you'd have a better chance although as I said I don't know how high metal casting temps can get.

Diane B.
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« Reply #2 on: January 13, 2006 01:20:13 PM »

When I cast with metal I take my design and form it out of wax until it looks exactly like my finished project should, put it in the metal cylinder (probalby steel), and fill it with plaster, then either pour in the melted metal or use a casting machine. I don't know about your polymer clay mold, but if you make your own they are a lot more original.

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« Reply #3 on: January 13, 2006 01:57:21 PM »

I agree with Chelsa.  You wouldn't actually be pouring the molten metal into a plastic/rubber mold.  I'm a metalsmith and am most familiar with the process of lost wax casting.  You would want to make a wax of the design first, the wax becomes a sort of negative space in your investment (or plaster) and is where the metal flows. 

http://jewelrymaking.about.com/library/blcast.htm This link has step by step pictures, and I think it is pretty descriptive.  But I could explain anything if you don't understand it.

If you're interested in working with the wax, but don't have access to the equipment to cast metal, you might try to find a caster who could do the actual casting.

Hope that helps!

Oh, I have one more idea for you Smiley  This would be the easiest!  If you want to use plastic molds and have a metal object as the final result, you might try PMC (precious metal clay).  PMC is a claylike material made up of fine silver particles suspended in an organic binder.  You can push it into molds, roll it out, make snakes, cut it with cookie cutters...anything you can do with regular clay!  Then you let it dry and fire it in a kiln.  It's much faster (and only slightly more expensive) than casting.  And you don't need all of the metalsmithing tools as you would with casting... 

Ok, sorry I went on and on...but I love talking about this stuff, so let me know if you have any questions!

www.recycledstar.etsy.com --> Fine silver jewelry and other goodies Smiley

www.recycledstar.com --> Needs to be updated!
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