Metals: Sandcasting Part 1

After talking to the Dallas, the metal technician, we decided that the most time efficient method to produce my Bronze and Aluminium casts was Sandcasting. This will bypasses the whole wax tree and ceramic shell process meaning a mould can be ready for casting in 2 days as opposed to 7. This is only possible when the piece doesn’t have any undercuts, so can be cast as a simple 2-sided mould, otherwise lost wax casting should be used. However, my forms are simple surfaces with no undercuts which will be straightforward to produce a 2-sided mould from. Nevertheless, the bronze will penetrate the sand to some degree, so the surface quality will deteriorate which will require more bronze cold work. Below is a video of making the first side of the moulds. This stage involved making a blue foam surround which supported the form inside it, allowing one to pack the sand down around the form and created a nice key for each side to fit into. One also needed to brush the surfaces with graphite to stop it sticking to the sand, which looks really nice, see below for images. Once the sand has been compacted, one exposes the sand to CO2 gas which reacted to the silica in the sand mix and makes it go like concrete. Unfortunately, my first mould of Venus broke when I took it apart due to lack of CO2 gas, which has set me back a bit, but it is a quick and easy process so I will simply re-do the mould.

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