Friday, February 11, 2011

STONE ANGEL et al...

I got a new casting pot and a smaller ladle that pours from the bottom.  The pot holds the pewter temperature constant so it will pour more evenly, and when my ladle is empty I can just redip the ladle and keep pouring.
Today I broke the number one rule of metal casting. I was using a stainless steel spoon to remove the dross (dirty slag that floats to the top of the hot pewter) and i forgot i had earlier taken the spoon out of some water.  It couldn't have had more that a drop of water still on it, but when it hit the molten metal, the molten metal EXPLODED. I was lucky...i escaped with a red mark on my cheek and a minor burn on my shoulder.  Fortunately I had safety glasses on - I wish I'd had my face mask on like I normally do and something more protective that a halter t-top.
This is a SOLID PEWTER (over 1 pound!) stone angel i just cast.......the angel is about 4 1/2 inches tall and is rough finished just like a real stone angel.  Not sure what i'll do with it yet....I just wanted to try the mold....
and here are a few more items:
these pieces haven't been cleaned up yet.  I saved the birds, but the hand and lion medallion I remelted.
I brought out some of my other silicone molds....not all silicone molds are made alike.  the cheapy rubbery molds made by amaco I think...melt from the heat of the pewter.  the little wings are from an old mold i got ages ago from australia, but it poured too thick ... pouring pewter takes lots of practice ...the better the pour, the less you have to clean up.
here i am casting into a double sided round mold....these are the ones meant to be put on a spin machine  but i just clamp them together and pour, hoping for the best.  the penguin and both kitties from yesterday are from this type of 2 sided mold.  I didn't get enough metal into the mold fast enough, so this little guy goes back into the melting pot.
also some too thick pewter frames and a slew of skull beads.
I also ruined one of my new good molds.  it made a delightful mama fox and her kit and a papa fox....but  whatever it was made out of it started to bubble up brown goo.. . i thought it might have left over resin in it, but it turns out it was the mold itself melting and most of the detail in the mold was destroyed...  the mold itself is in the black long one in the first pic.  below are the pewter creatures that had smeared details.  they went back into the pot too.
live and learn.


Joanne Huffman said...

I'm so impressed with your casting work (see Etsy order). You really are going great guns with this.

Lisa said...

Those are so nifty! I love seeing the process as well...and am so glad you are ok. Yikes - I haven't gotten into dangerous arts yet. My paints don't explode (well, not yet at least). :)

Kathy L said...

Keep at it girl...THe angel was lovely and so are the wings!

Kathy McElroy said...

Glad to hear the it wasn't more serious. Love the work your doing. Thnaks for sharing your process.

Barbara Jean said...

I LOVE those birds!
Thanks for coming by my place. I'm glad I found you.

barbara jean

E Makes Art said...

Hi! Thanks for stopping by! This is so interesting to me! I know nothing about casting, but think it's so cool that you do it! Have fun and good luck!


Meredith said...

Be careful please!!!

Carmen Wing said...

Yowza, read this through my fingers, honestly. Ouch!

Unknown said...

Well done and helpful too