Posts tagged: casting

Jun 09 2010

Castings in progress

The new work order sheet is helping hugely. I’ve got them listed by resin type, rather than by order. I start at the top, then look at the list to see what moulds are still free that there’s an entry for, then do that.
Makes for some odd bed-fellows, but with the FAR shorter degassing times the bench-top de-gasser’s giving me, it’s easy to manage interleaving the different mixes.

Mondays castings:

Tuesdays castings:

Yes that’s an anvil. I thought it was overkill last time, but since they last couple haven’t bonded to the velcro right without it, it’s in play again.

At this rate, all orders should be complete and shipped at the latest, Monday. Phew.

Please keep an eye on the Twitter feed for up-to-the-minute updates if you’re concerned about your order.

[20/06/2010: Amalgamating old posts from “Dreamwidth Creative Blog” into sci-fi-fox.com to re-purpose DW blog account.]

May 28 2010

Back to casting

So back to casting again, now the mini degasser’s working (and working well at that!).

Success in casting the hemispheres in water-clear styrene!
Last night I carefully trimmed the silicone moulds back to make the walls very thin, so they were drawn in with the surface tension as the styrene shrinks. This meant no streaks anymore, and there doesn’t seem to be any noticeable distortion of the shape.

The biggest problem us then actually getting the styrene out of the tin, especially in small amounts. It’s provided in a paint-tin, so unless you’re using the whole lot in one, you need a way to extract small amounts, and a plastic mixing cup is too big to fit in. So today I quickly brazed together mini ladle out of the stainless lid from a cocktail shaker and a long bolt with a couple of nuts for grip.
I’m keeping it in a glass jar, since I only have one sort of styrene to use, and apparently it’s not hygroscopic like the PU resins are. So this’ll keep it from needing repeated cleaning.

Colour mixing
Tonight I finally got a really rich chocolate colour for the only remaining casting order from before Confuzzled. “What would a melted KitKat look like?” was a good visual guide.

10pts Green, 4pts Red, 1pt Black

The resin claws and footpads are setting overnight. As tomorrow is MCM Expo and I don’t know what time I’ll get home, casting will probably resume on sunday.

T-shirts
I’ve been making enquiries into new variations on the standard UKFur design shirts. I’ll be getting a few “4XL” in in the unisex. Technically they’re still 3XL, but of a shirt type where it corresponds to a 54/56″ chest rather than a 50/52″.

Also been gaining interest in getting some shirts in fitted ladies sizes. Currently looking at getting some in standard black.. but also pink. And other colours too, of course!

http://www.promotional-store.com/%28ec5bicj0gpbrwr45b3qfzt45%29/product.aspx?sqs=5lBamEO6TJFdo0YhKUaoMLQ1W5R4IEWzphCPIqTnTSY%253d

Oddly enough, this one is a heavier weight of cotton than the one I was previously looking at, but much more affordable, and should put the ladies shirts at £12 in whatever colour.

As the next LondonFurs meet is only a week away, I’ll likely make the next order after that (as I may need the extra cash I’ll hopefully earn there, to make this increasingly large order).

[20/06/2010: Amalgamating old posts from “Dreamwidth Creative Blog” into sci-fi-fox.com to re-purpose DW blog account.]

May 27 2010

Some experimental pretty things

I recently took a £20 commission from a dear friend to make a basic modification to a set of driving goggles. She wanted them “steampunked” and I had a lovely bit of filigree from a 1920/30s wall clock. I’m sad to see it go, but it did seem to be the perfect use for it. So on with making some Winged Messenger goggles.
The first thing I had to do was cut out the middle of the “sun flare”, as it had an odd number of points.

I then filed and put it on the sanding disk to get the burrs off and round the edges. The natural tarnish looks good and authentic, so there didn’t seem need to polish it.
The brass is also thicker than I remembered, so it didn’t seem like it would need extra reinforcement, and I just drilled out the existing holes to put in some rivets.
Standard rivets? Yes. But the frame on the goggles is silver, so the aluminium rivets fade in very well. Okay they’re not real metal (aluminised plastic frames), but the mix is pretty good and it drilled nicely. Too nicely. It was hard to stop the drill pulling through and through the padding.

Still, basically turned out nice. :)

Will be dropping it to them at Expo at the weekend rather than posting it as the timing’s not right for postage (will be refunding the postage, of course).


I’ve also just tried styrene water-clear resin for the first time, and have learnt a few things.

  1. It’s cheap.
  2. It STINKS. The whole workshop. Even after airing it for several days.
  3. 6% shrinkage is a problem when casting eyes, unless you’re costuming as something from a Rob Zombie music video.

The latter is actually an interesting effect, though likely to be hard to reproduce exactly. The pulling away from the mould due to shrinkage during gelling has left river-delta style patterns down the sides, with a clear centre underneath.
It may be avoidable by using a double-fill to take up the slack (but that may increase optical distortion), or a very thin mould that will pull in with the shrinkage due to surface tension (but may distort the shape).
The urethanes are more expensive, but looking more reliable. Will be making a comparison set tomorrow. The cure time is much shorter on PU’s compared to styrenes (3-5min vs 15-20). Gives much less time for proper degassing. May be doable degassing in-mould in a small fast chamber.

[20/06/2010: Amalgamating old posts from “Dreamwidth Creative Blog” into sci-fi-fox.com to re-purpose DW blog account.]

May 04 2010

More prep progress

Pink rubber nose has come out perfectly. OMFG it’s so cute. And soft like real skin.
Need to make a black one next.

Think I shall make a poll for CF. Currently I have some rough nose prototypes sitting here. Let the users decide what I should do next? Generic triangle? Squirrel? Small or medium canine? Others?

Rainbow selection also come out well. And replacement velcro heel-pad is done, cut and fits with the rest of the set.

Have trimmed up Razor moulds. Will cast more shortly. Gonna add the three Razor sizes to the main claw display first tho. And get on with the special order display.

[20/06/2010: Amalgamating old posts from “Dreamwidth Creative Blog” into sci-fi-fox.com to re-purpose DW blog account.]

May 04 2010

1:14am

finishing up in workshop.

now unhappy with chocolate colouring. Too red. Will remix after CF most likely now.

Rainbow demo set setting in heated cabinet.

Razor series claws first mass casting, setting. Pink Shore 40 nose also, replacement 80S black heel-pad for Velcro footpad display.

Cargo pram also modified and probably sound. Must check allocated train seat and judge position relative to baggage storage. Will carry as much by backpack as possible.

Naruto headbands also almost complete. Hope to be shot of them after so long!

Order of 20 DPFs also being shipped by 1st-class tomorrow. Should arrive in time.

Several displays still need a lot of work, also need to type up, print and laminate point-of-sale, and also print product information leaflets.
Additionally, must work out how to change IRQ assignment for laptops wifi card. Hotel has free wifi apparently and will make uploading icons much easier and cheaper than using phone as modem.
Also must complete and print door art.

Will see about acquiring a haircut tomorrow. Must finish catching up with finances also so I know how much I have in way of food budget.

Mum also intending to provide necklace making materials for my defective claws to sell.

Need to make up several bags of each type for direct sales.

1st Razor batch; 75g leaves underfilled. Go 100g next. Place large end slightly elevated to float level. Learn new fill levels and clean mould lips. Otherwise, good reproduction.

[20/06/2010: Amalgamating old posts from “Dreamwidth Creative Blog” into sci-fi-fox.com to re-purpose DW blog account.]

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