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About Kang

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  • Birthday 01/17/1973

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  • Location
    Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
  • Interests
    My wife and kids, backyard metal casting, A Song of Ice and Fire, minis

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  1. 625K, eh? Jeez, you could almost buy a tiny little house with no driveway and barely any yard in Toronto with that! Almost, but not quite... Just ask my sister, who the house number plaque I've been working on is for. I'm sot sure which I'd rather have TBH. I'm not set up for (or much interested in) casting jewelry, but on the other hand, big city living is really not my taste either - some of my hobbies don't seem like they'd mix too well with incredibly close proximity neighbours, who would more than likely send the PD and the FD right up my, er, nose, every time I fired up the Black Dread to melt something. I mean sure, sometimes it'd be nice to have places to go that I could actually walk to... But I value having a little more elbow room and privacy more. I guess I'd probably just take the cash instead. It wouldn't be enough to retire on yet, but I could pay off my debts... Pretty sure there'd still be more than enough left over to build and equip a nice heated workshop out back too... with a little more elbow room than the 2 cramped and frozen sheds I'm using now. I'd definitely sink some of it into foundry upgrades. Like a big boy sand muller and a much less pathetically underpowered welding machine, a big air compressor, and a nice big kiln for heat treating stuff and curing refractory and burning out lost wax molds in so I could try some of that... Maybe even build a small forge, so I could play around with hammers and red hot metal! Of course then I'd need some really good ventilation too... OK, now you've got me dreaming about winning the lottery! Kang
  2. Boxer Rebellion: Box-Turtle Folk, WIP

    Aluminum would be too brittle, at least without some fairly complicated heat treatment. I think you are on the right track using bronze. It probably would seem weird to some people to use bronze, ie. a type of metal that is normally saved for the most desirable final products in the world of artistic metal casting, as an intermediate step on the path to producing pewter castings that are easy to think of as mass produced toys, but your reasons are sound, and knowing how much work goes into your greens, it totally makes sense. Frankly I am surprised I haven't heard of others trying something like this. Kang
  3. Boxer Rebellion: Box-Turtle Folk, WIP

    So if I understand correctly, you're gonna finish sculpting the feet... but is the idea that you'll leave the legs (and arms) as just wire so the cast armatures can be easily posed before slapping putty onto the bronzes to finish them up? You might even be able to bend some of the waxes themselves to pre-pose some of the armatures before investing... or maybe that's not as easy as I'm imagining - I'm not familiar with the wax you're using. Anyhow, good luck with the wax work and casting, looking forward to seeing the results! Kang
  4. Happy Birthday Kang !!!

    Aww shucks, thanks guys :) The big 4-5. Kang
  5. Testing out Shapeways new Extreme Detail Material

    Cool mini! Acetone smoothing to reduce print lines may or may not work, depending on what type of plastic filament was used to print it - ABS plastic, yes; PLA plastic, no. Not sure about other printable plastics, and I have no clue what the default filament choice from commercial printing services might be. Most home 3D printers come with a PLA filament sample; not sure if that is any indication of what the pros use though. ...After reading MojoBob's post more carefully, I should point out that acetone still may be useful for removing traces of wax support material from a PLA print. That is beyond the scope of what I've learned about 3DP so far. I'm leaving in the bit about smoothing print lines with acetone even though it seems not to be relevant to what Bob was talking about, just for the sake of general knowledge. Carry on... Kang
  6. Geez, looks like I missed a couple replies! Thanks, and sorry to all for not checking back sooner. Fluxes are compounds that reduce the melting points of other things so they will flow better and farther. Other things like metals... or like crucibles and furnace linings. Borax is a flux that is used for bronze foundry as well as brasses and other copper alloys, and (I believe) precious metals. I know it is not used for the type of aluminum foundry work I normally do, but the explanation of the reason why would be boring. I do not plan to melt the chips from sawing up my ingots. Extra flux (to help clean metal flow out of the dross more easily when it is being skimmed off) means extra wear and tear on my crucible and furnace, so if I'm only wasting a dollar or two in shavings by tossing them in the recycle bin or just shelving them, it's not worth the effort and the wear and tear on my gear that reclaiming it would entail. The shavings would probably cause more trouble than they're worth anyhow; the chips would almost instantly become dross (due to being almost entirely surface area), and when I skimmed that out of my crucible, I'd be taking some more clean metal out with it no matter how well I fluxed the stuff. I have tried melting aluminum cans once when I was just starting to play around with foundry work. Waste of time, that metal is so thin that most of it burns (oxidizes) rather then melting. Literally more than half of what you get is dross (junk) that needs to be skimmed off before you can pour anything, and that is after crushing the cans as much as possible to reduce surface area and taking the time to push each can beneath the surface of the melt to reduce oxidation. I'd expect melting chips/sawdust to work about as well. If I had been using some kind of cutting lube (I wasn't, but it's probably advisable), then that would mean getting even more junk in the pot to become dross and/or cause porosity defects inside the resulting casting. I save the dross from my aluminum melts. I could turn it in at a recycling center, not sure what it's worth but note, aluminum oxide is what the grit on most sandpaper is made of, so it does have some value. Perhaps it could also be used in the making of refractory products used to line the next guy's melting furnace. Probably some day I will try to melt a bunch of it down (well, melt the clean metal out of it would probably be more accurate) and flux the heck out of it to see how much metal I can squeeze back out of it. I'm in no rush though. Don't precious metals (gold, silver, etc.) come as shot pellets or something small like that, rather than ie. 30# gold bars (about the size of my ~15# bronze ingots, near as I can guess)? Hey, if you actually do ever find yourself cutting up 30 pound gold bars with your chop saw, you should definitely shoot some video... Me and the other internet weirdos I mentioned in that video would truly enjoy watching that! :) Kang
  7. I picked up a couple of those old RAFM kits at my FLGS a couple years ago for surprisingly cheap when I found them covered with dust looking lonely and forgotten on a high shelf, I am 90% sure this was one of them. Also there was a cool dragon and a skeleton war wagon of some sort. Did you have much trouble assembling this thing? It looks awesome... Great job! Kang
  8. Coffee Dwarf Caffine Canon

    I know caffeine supposedly stunts your growth, but that's ridiculous! :) ...Because they are dwarves, and dwarves are short?... <somewhere a cricket chirps> Hey, I tried, and I haven't had my own coffee yet... Awesome stuff! I don't know how some of you folks come up with these great creative ideas. Kang
  9. Here's the new portaband saw in action, making quick work of turning a giant (~15lbs) silicon bronze ingot into more reasonable sized pieces. Talespinner, if you are watching, I'm curious how the amount of dust/shavings produced compares to the new ingot-cutting metal chop saw that you recently mentioned over in your awesome box-turtle-folk scuplting thread. Thanks, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7l8sRws_tAk Kang
  10. Hey everyone, hope you all had a great holiday, whatever you may or may not celebrate. Here's wishing everyone a safe and happy new year! I got some new goodies for the foundry under the tree this XMas - some high-temp aluminized gloves that should allow me to skim dross off a hot crucible of bronze without getting a burned pinkie finger, and about 50lbs of Everdur (a silicon bronze favoured by art casters)! I can't wait to try casting that stuff... Also picked up a new portaband saw, which should help a lot with removing sprues etc. from castings, and also if I decide I need to cut those huge bronze ingots down to a more reasonable size. Also, here's a quick video update on the house number casting project: (spoiler alert: the insane cold still has it on hold for now. Probably a good time for me to get back to some of my miniatures projects, which have been on hold far too long.) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KxIdScuacIo Kang
  11. Filling gap

    The key to mixing epoxy properly is: step 1: once you're absolutely certain you've fully mixed the two components... Keep mixing. Then when you're done that, see step 1. :) I like epoxy for pinning too, never having had any real luck with CA glues, and I use Jester's old spit-and-poster-tack method to locate the second hole so it lines up perfectly with the first. There's a tutorial on CMON somewhere but I haven't been there in ages, I'm sure everything has been helpfully reorganized over there by now in order to make it impossible to find... Kazmania7 posted above advising gluing first then drilling all the way through from one side and installing the pin that way and puttying over the hole, OMG that's genius! Why did I never think of that over the years?!? Kang
  12. People use vegetable glycerine to make that transparent soap and (along with propylene glycol) e-cigarette liquid, presumably it has other uses as well; I'm sure it can be had online. Can't recall where we got ours back in the 80's when we tried this... Might have been from the drug store or something. If I can find those old instructions I could try to post something here if you like, but no promises - that model RR book is probably either long gone or taken to some faraway place by now. Clever idea, the hairspray thing I mean. Kang
  13. Cash's 2017 Art

    That's really cool... The first one looks happy and the second one looks angry! Kang
  14. Those trees look great, I especially like your birches, the trunks look just right. Anyone here ever try pickling and dying your own lichen for foliage? A friend and I found huge patches of the good type of tree foliage looking lichen (IIRC one name for it is Norwegian Lichen, though we live in Canada) in the woods near his Dad's house and followed a pickling recipe from an old model railroad scenery book years ago, I remember glycerine being one of the pickling ingredients to keep the foliage from drying out and crumbling, and we used fabric dye for the colours. We never had much luck getting the pickling to work right, but we sure did have fun trying... Lot of good scenery projects in those old train hobby books, we made some cool rock molds too with liquid latex and gauze strips. Smelly and very time consuming, but it worked better than pickling the lichen... Kang
  15. Grenadier C'thulu-esque monster

    Nice work! Looks like an Otyugh to me. The Otyugh is the portcullis of monsters. Meaning, people have come up with an astounding number of ways to pronounce it. To me it's an "oat-you" "Por-tic-you-liss"... Seriously?!? :) Anyhow, nice work on this guy... whatever he's called. :) Kang