The wait is over! This week, I successfully finished my bronze castings and I can now share the results with you!
The spruing was quite a challenge, and I’m still not looking forward to cutting them off next week, but this is how they looked before the ceramic shell was applied:
The first one needed all of the sprues entering from the back, so that I didn’t compromise the texture, and the second one I could sprue on the outside, as there was breaks in the texture.
I then applied the 7 layers of ceramic shell, which is a long process that takes roughly 4 days, and requires lots of patience!
Next, the moulds are placed in the kiln for a burn out cycle. This time, I put them in for a longer burn out cycle and used compressed air to clear the shell at different stages during the burn out.
The pour was on Thursday and I managed to catch some cool photos of the techs in action!
We've finished pouring! Took this little timelapse of the techs… #bronze #bronzecasting #pouring #moltenbronze #crucible #metal #metalsmithing #casting #foundry #metalfoundry #technicians #university #UCAFarnham #wecreate #creativearts #creativeartsstudent #sculpture #craft #contemporarycraft #craftstudent #explorecreaterosie
Unfortunately, de-shelling down in the foundry isn’t as easy as it is in the jewellery department, and we can’t just submerge the piece in water to release the shell. Instead, the ceramic shell then has to be removed with a hammer and chisel.
However, I was extremely pleased to see the results! The castings came out almost perfect, and it seems that we successfully managed to remove all of the wood residue from the mould before pouring – leaving a really high quality texture in the bronze.
I think the combination of a longer burn out and the use of compressed air to clear the mould have been the two factors which have made this casting so successful.
I can now progress with this technique in the new year , knowing that it is going to give me the results that I want!
I am now very excited to start spruing up for the January pour!