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Showing posts from November, 2016

Casting the Medallions

Now that we have some wax models from the injection molds, it's time to turn them into metal. I do investment casting, which uses a gypsum "investment" to make the mold around wax models, which are then melted out. This is opposed to other forms like sand casting, where green sand (not literally green, but a fine sand that has been mixed with a binder, like water and bentonite clay for traditional green sand or oil to make petrobond) is packed into a frame around a model, then the mold is separated and the model gets removed by hand.

At a high level, there are four phases of investment casting:
Mold makingBurnoutCastingCleanup Phase 1: Mold Making The first step in mold making is to create a "sprue tree." Essentially, you're creating a system of pipes to deliver molten metal to your models. An incorrectly sprued model can get casting defects. 
If the sprue connected to the model is too small, the metal in the tube will solidify before the model does. This is…

Fox Masquerade Mask

I've had the idea of making a metal fox mask for a few years now, but haven't really had a reason to do it until this year. Work decided our holiday party would be a murder mystery masquerade, which makes a great excuse.

The basis for the mask was Wintercroft's Fox Half Mask. The half mask is perfect for the masquerade use, and I thought the papercraft/low poly look would translate well to the metal.
I took the mask template and glued it to 22 gauge copper sheet with spray adhesive.
Then after about an hour of work with a jeweler's saw... I had the pieces, somewhat resembling a fox mask, but mostly a Batman logo.
The paper templates were attached to the other side, so I could use the dotted lines for initial bends. These were mostly done on the corner of an anvil or over a piece of 1"x4" clamped in a bench vice. A rubber mallet was used instead of a metal hammer, since the rubber won't leave indentions in the surface where the hammer strikes.
After the i…