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Everything posted by Kang

  1. One could maybe try to make a case for Andre the Giant... His voice was too awesome not to show up somewhere... but yeah, I do tend to agree with you there, good call.
  2. Done it; worked great. Not nearly as nice as what the OP did to attach the bottles: I zip-tied Reaper MS paint bottles to the blade of my recip saw, just loose enough that I could wiggle the zip tie off afterwards to re-use on the next bottle but tight enough that it'd hug the neck of the bottle tight enough for it to not fly off and snug in between a couple of the saw blade's teeth to hold steady. Went through my whole collection of paints (admittedly not as huge as those of many here) a couple times before having to replace that original zip tie. This did not work on Vallejo paints (slightly different bottle shapes) and I did not even try on my few surviving GW's.. I may have to find my old Ryobi battery powered recip saw next time (though I really don't like those tools, the batteries never did last worth a $#!& but the multi-tool bundle it came in seemed like a good deal and the drill is still OK while the battery lasts), as my cheapo Princess Auto saw recently bit the dust (cutting down small trees in the yard) after more punishment (ie. said logging, cutting up aluminum car wheels once or twice) and improvised uses (most demanding: chucked up a long piece of steel bar in it instead of a blade and used it as what's most easily described as a concrete vibrator for a very dry mix with EXCELLENT results BTW) than it was ever designed for or, frankly, ever did anything evil enough to deserve other than coming from Princess Auto, Canada's answer to "Horrible Fright". I don't think the paint shaker idea harmed it at all though. I'd have used or at least tried my jigsaw instead, but the first time I tried it... the reciprocating saw AKA sawzall happened to be located on top of the pile o' tools.
  3. The minis in DSM's GRRM Masterworks line are insane, what with the accurate proportions. (Tom Meier is godlike.) Great job! Interesting how his shield is painted in Lannister colours when he probably hasn't even married Cersei yet at this age! Or has he? That happened soon after he took the Iron Throne, and although my copy of young Bobby B. is across the continent at the moment and I'm my phone right now so it's hard to see, it does sort of look like his prancing stag is already crowned on that sigil... Ok scratch that, what I meant to say was, interesting how his shield is painted in Lannister colours to honour his beautiful new wife! :) Kang
  4. Happy belated nameday TS, thats a really nice mini-mino. (Speed paint, he says, hmph. My speed paints take at least month and don't look near this good)... Kang
  5. This place had chunks of what they said were spruce trunks. Dad thought they looked more like ponderosa pine though. Before we began throwing, they sprayed them with water, apparently this keeps them from getting beat up too quick and helps blades stick in. Let me know if you find out any more about how that should be done, chucking axes is a blast! Kang
  6. Never really checked out this section much before, but it seems like a good place to put some pictures of the stuff I've been working on over the past few years. I'll start with the very beginning of my molten metal obsession which began 3 years ago during the 13th annual "Boys' Camping Weekend". Every year we try to have some sort of unusual and memorable activity planned. That year, it was seeing if we could get aluminum to melt in our campfire. Someone brought a crucible from the internet. Someone else brought a novelty ice cube tray. Yet another guy somehow got totally hooked on this molten metal stuff, and that someone would be me. Aaaand yet another someone brought his video camera AKA phone: https://vimeo.com/75917079 So that was it for me, I dove in headfirst and haven't really surfaced since, from the strange world of backyard metal casting. So, you see those ugly little skullules in the video? Pretty cool, but definitely hideous and not as intended, right? I just got back from Boys' Camping Weekend #16. Oh, how far I have come in 3 years! I brought a homemade bronze axe with me this year, so I could field-test it right back where it all started, by using it to cut wood to feed the very same fire that was responsible for its creation. First some background on the bronze axe though. I was inspired to make it by George R. R. Martin's world of Westeros, where in ancient times the First Men crossed the Narrow Sea wielding bronze weapons to make war on the Children of the Forest. I don't know much about axes, but I did some googling to come up with a cool looking shape that would be believable as a battle axe yet still useful for chopping wood, which I am more likely to find myself doing. Then I made a wooden pattern to use in making the sand mold needed to cast it. Here are the two halves of the "split pattern" - each part goes in one half of the mold to form the mold cavity, then they patten is drawn out of the mold, the mold is closed, and metal gets poured in: (not the original pix, those showed the pattern halves repainted and sealed for glossy slick non-sand-stickiness) Here is the mold just after I poured in the bronze: (See? The mold is literally a 'sandbox', so I know I'm in the right section...) Here is the raw casting just after I shook out the mold. This side of the casting was in the cope, which is what we call the top half of the mold though I am not sure why. You can see the gating and 2 risers and the sprue here as well as the axe blade. Note the shrinkage on top of those risers. That is their function, to feed their own molten metal into the cast part, to compensate for the shrink that would otherwise occur on the casting itself. They will be remelted when I pour my next bronze casting: Drag (bottom half of the mold) side. You can see the remains of the hardened sand core I had to insert into the mold to create the hollow "eye" where a handle wiould later be fitted. I used sodium silicate (AKA waterglass) based woodstove gasket cement to bind the core, then catalyzed the hardening reaction by baking it in my oven on low for 15 minutes. The core was made in a small plaster mold I made from the core prints on the pattern before they got attached to it, which is visible above. Note, there is a visible screwdriver shaft-thick vent through the core in this pic, to allow gases to escape the mold Here is a big ingot I poured with the leftover bronze, to be remelted next time along with the risers, sprue, and gating from this casting. And here is it pretty much finished up. I put a sledge hammer handle from the hardware store on it because otherwise it would not have been ready for this year's camping weekend, but I did come home with a nice piece of hickory from our campsite that I'll use to make a new handle, now that I have had a chance to field-test the axe. I also ground off the flashing around the parting line and sanded the blade a little shinier than how it came out of the sand. There is a lot more sanding to do before it has a golden mirror-finish, but in terms of usefulness, it is all finshed up here in this pic. The edges were hardened by hammering on them. Bronze does not need to be heated up like steel for this sort of forging, and most bronzes are not hardened by heat treatment. Now. So far I have been discussing this like I used traditional bronze-age bronze - alloys of copper and tin. But the fact is, nowadays "bronze" refers to many different alloys of copper. The alloy I chose for making blades is aluminum bronze, AKA alloy C95400 (which in fact CAN be hardened by heat treatment, though I am not equipped for that). The aluminum bronzes are the toughest of the copper alloys, so they should make the most durable bronze blades, which should be able to hold their edges. Here's where the campsite field test comes in... Our usual campsite is surrounded by a forst of hickory and oak and maple (and the lake), so basically a lot of hardwood. We prefer to burn the fallen hickory logs, because the smoke smells nice, but mostly because one of those hickory logs burns hot (hot enough to melt aluminum, see video clip above) and burns all night long. I knew I wanted to use a big dry super hard thigh-thick hickory log to test the edges on my super hard (for a bronze) axe, so that is exactly what I did when we found on that size leaning dead against a couple other trees (rather than green and growing or rotting on the ground). (I have been unable to find the pix to replace the rest of these broken links, but the most interesting ones in this post are now restored... on to the next post. I'm not saying it was easy going, or even easier than using our camp saw... But the camp saw is also easier than using a store-bought forged steel axe, and what really matters here is that the First Men bronze axe works, and it held its edges! Both blades were used, and both came through it completely undamaged; the edges are as straight and sharp as when we began chopping ("we" because we took turns), no visible shiny spots or bumps or nicks can be seen or felt. I call that a 100% success, and I call this the greatest thing I have made in my backyard foundry so far, by far. Here are a few gratuitous fire shots of the burning test log keeping our campfire burning hot all night long: So that is my latest creation. I have posted my cast aluminum weirwood tree here somewhere before and I think my little rabbit-robots. I'll try to link those here if I can find those older posts. Otherwise, let me know if you guys want to see more and I can dig up some more pix of my castings. Spoiler warning: mostly it is a lot of aluminum skulls. Or you could try googling "Ghost Vines Band". It's not my band, it's one of my camping buddies, and I just learned he's wearing one of my skull belt buckles in one of their promo pix which I had no trouble finding. But I also have pictures of all the foundry equipment I've built over the last 3 years, everything from my oil-fired melting furnace (Balerion the Black Dread) to Big Bucket Mull the sand mixing machine to my cast aluminum sand rammer (King Robert's Rammer) to Lightbringer, my homemade waste oil burner, and on and on. So it's not ALL metal skulls Not bad for some crazy Canadian computer programmer tinkering in his shed for kicks, eh? I even got an "order" for another bronze axe from one of the guys I camp with, which is a huge step for me. This has always been just a hobby, but this opportunity will allow me to try and make an even better axe without having to pay for the bronze myself. Who knows, maybe someday I'll be able to make my casting hobby start paying its own way in the world instead of costing me money... Kang
  7. Ha! I am currently on holiday at my parents' place out west in Kelowna, BC, and the other day my dad and my son and I actually went to one of those places where you can go throw axes at targets for an hour. Now that is some kinda fun! Been documenting the stuff we've been doing here on my YouTube channel, so there is axe throwing footage online there if anyone is interested. Also, deadly giant birds! And a lot of swimming. Don't worry, it's pretty safe to watch - I did my best to edit out as much footage of me with my shirt off as I could... https://youtu.be/Xcnbslifguc This place actually allows people to bring their own axes to throw, unlike the place back home in Ottawa that I checked out several months ago, which considered that to be too much of a liability. Ottawa, go figure... If I still had my bronze axe, I'd have been a little sad I didn't bring it along. I'm definitely setting up some targets in the back yard when I make the next one though! Kang
  8. Ralph Bakshi mentions get auto-like'd by me, but the pigface orcs would have earned one anyhow. Amazing! They can take away our pigface orcs, but gamorrean guards are forever... Kang
  9. Pochi, I don't know about the rest of the spiders, but all these Cadiriths posted lately are clearly the universe's way of mocking me for failing to ever complete mine. Ebon, keep working that airbrush! Whatever you're doing, it is really working. Kang
  10. Thes, the one you linked is really amazing (thanks for arranging for me to see it)... But I would not say it looks to be made of lava or even to be particularly lava themed. Not that I have any better suggestions. Still, I'm glad I got to have a look. :) The usual suspects look great; Slipshadow the rogue was the mini I used for one of my D&D3.5 PC's once upon a time, (KiA, IIRC, and since the party fled so that no body was ever recovered, he stayed that way. I think it was a zombie grey render that softened him up for the necromancer bbeg's enervation spell to do him in in the end) and I thought mine was one of my better painted minis - there's a pic of him in slightly beat-up condition that can be found via my old (linked) reaper minis index post - but yours totally blows it away. Great work! Kang
  11. Coming along great! That thing looks really excited about whatever awful and bloody thing it is about to do... or eat. Love the big toothy grin on its face and the bugged out eyes, they are both equal parts frightening and adorable. It's kind of hard to look away, very nice work! Kang
  12. Update: Hahaha, I did get worldtraveler's mailing address (see previous post); I'll be sending the original iron dogs casting I've been trying to copy and the plaster light switch cover for him to lost-wax-ceramic-shell-cast in bronze for me as he promised, perhaps not expecting me to hold him to it. He can come off as a bit mouthy when criticizing YT content creators when he concludes they are a bunch of "elf-hats" (there's a lot of "foundry" videos of guys acting like they know how to make a casting safely but don't, they're pouring on their knees a foot away from the mold on a wet cement floor in sandals and shorts wearing flimsy gardening gloves and no face shield etc., inexplicably spraying water on everything in sight like that makes them safer (a wonderful recipe for steam explosion powered airborne molten metal), and someone imitating could/would get very badly hurt), but I can say for sure now that I called him on his promise, he's not afraid to put his money where his big loud mouth is, and it does seem like he criticizes mainly with helping others (whose hats he deems less elfy) succeed and stay safe in mind. Bit of a character, you might say, but a good guy deep down so far as I can tell... I can't wait to see video of how his process works! He seems to find the whole situation hilarious, as do I. All in good fun, and it gives him an excuse to cast something - his WiP waxes for the next bronze gas lamp he'll be making aren't gonna be ready for months anyhow, so really everyone gets to have a little fun. I'll post pictures when I receive the bronzes! Although he's already talking about making the wax patterns he`ll pull from mine thicker than the originals, which will make it a little less challenging to get the molds to fill. Sounds like cheating to me... :) Geez, I haven't even mailed them out yet and I'm already making excuses why he'll succeed where I failed! Ceramic shell casting works a lot like Talespinner's lost wax casting adventures posted in the sculpting subforum, but the molds are made differently. To put it in layman`s terms, investment molds are poured with a plaster-like substance, whereas ceramic shell patterns are repeatedly dipped in a ceramic slurry and dusted with fine sand and allowed to dry completely until a thick enough shell is built up to contain the molten metal. Both mold types need to have the wex melted out, then both types need to go into a kiln before the pour, but for different reasons (calcining vs. sintering). The mold materials are generally not reusable in either method.
  13. Nice bunch of ruffians, I'd pick another alley for sure! :) Kang
  14. Nice! Old lead gets my attention every time. I still have that helmeted skeleton in the middle somewhere too I think. Probably also wearing Testors enamels! :) I remember when my suburban hobby shop (which was amazing for us to have in a small neighbourhood like ours, it was some parents of kids about my age that opened it and kept it going not so much to make money but mostly for the sake of the neighbourhood kids) got in the first batch of Citadel "Creature" paint sets too, my first acrylics, no more paint thinner cleanup - I remember the box cover had a painting of a monster kicking back at his paint desk painting a mini, lol, that stuff was a life changer for me back then. Wish I'd known not to keep them open and be dipping directly into the pots, some of which dried out a lot before I got too many figs done. Enamels never dried out so quick, and there was no www to learn from so how were we to know? The public library? Believe me, we would have found any books on painting minis if they were there. :) Thanks for the memories! Kang
  15. This deserves a Like, even just for the successful assembly alone. Mine was fully pinned and epoxied and everything, posed like a tarantula in attack posture (ie. rearing up a bit more), I had such awesome plans for her, yet she still started to come apart under her own weight before I was even finished priming it... Now, several years later, she still sits in her box of shame. (the shame is mine, not hers) And in pieces (hers). I should probably also mention that my players had long since defeated the monster I bought her to represent by the time she started falling apart... I'm no speed-painter. That beastie sure is one heavy chunk of pewter, eh? I like the colour scheme you chose, it really suits her. Kang
  16. Well, I took another shot at molding and casting the doggy key hooks and the light switch cover plate, using the little nuggets of cast aluminum I made in the previous post. I managed to pull a decent sand mold of the dogs with only a little broken sand. Aceptable for a demo on using followers to mold iregular parting lines, I thought. I kept the crucible in the hot furnace while skimming the dross this time after seeing that recommended by a youtuber and former expert molder for the US navy who goes by the handle Sandrammer, who has forgotten more about foundry work than most hobbyists will ever learn - this prevents the molten metal from losing too much heat during this process. Since the last mold did not fill and I'm pretty sure hotter molten metal would have done the trick, this seemed like a great idea. If you watched part 4 of my Greensand Molding Using Followers playlist, you might have noticed you can literally watch this heat loss happening - the crucible in the close-up shot goes from a bright red glow to no glow at all by the time I poured it. I also put a stick under one end of the mold (the end with the cover plate) this time, since being poured "uphill" is supposed to help thin castings fill better. I had such high hopes... I think I will weld a longer handle on my dross skimmer so I can do the skim with the furnace still running. Sadly, this time when I shook out the mold, I was once again one dog short. A different dog this time, which seems strange, but he was missing no matter how you look at it. The dog next to the missing one had a too short tail also. It's the puppy who isn't on the left and the missing far end of the fence he isn't sitting on that did not fill. The part that did fill looks pretty good at least... The light switch cover was SOOO close to filling, I can't believe it failed again... Eventually I'll probably mold a couple of those together with gating specially designed for these thin castings (a runner and gates on each side of the cover plate(s) rather than just on one side), instead of shoving them in the extra space in another mold; maybe that'll work. I might be done with trying to cast those dogs, it was all only for molding practice anyhow, and it wasn't the mold that caused it to fail (well, maybe a different gating system could have helped...). I can only take so much discouragement... The up-side of it is, another youtuber named Worldtraveler commented on the last video that if I mail him the iron dogs, he'll cast one for me in bronze using lost wax ceramic shell casting, and he'll make a video of the process. So I have reasons to stop trying to do it myself. Worldtraveler goes by a different name on the backyard metal casting forum I'm a member of, and he is the guy who started (and has kept going) a thread called 'YouTube "winners" of metal casting' (the "winners" is sarcastic, not so much to mock but to help newbies avoid making the same mistakles others have, not that you can tell by his tone sometimes. Anyhow, he only has like 2 videos himself, so we were bugging him to make more videos himself if he's gonna judge others like that... :) So I am gonna try to get his address to mail it to him and hold him to that, should be fun to watch him show me how to do it "right". I haven't posted my video yet, it'll be up tonight as part 7 of the playlist *(called "Greensand Molding Using Followers"). The final part, where I challenge WT to make good on his word and show us all how it's supposed to be done. :) All in good fun though, he's a subscriber to my channel (one of 8, not many but it has quadrupled in the past few weeks LOL) and although I joke about it sometimes, I am not actually worried about ending up in the "winners" thread or anything. ...Although in part 6 I did have an oil line failure that perhaps should have won me a spot there... Since I forgot to record the pour this time, I included footage I shot of La Machine here in Ottawa on Sunday night. So there will be some giant robotic dragon action as well. My furnace, Balerion the Black Dread, is named after a dragon... so that seemed to make sense while I was editing things. I had hoped to have a successful casting for part 7, since I know a few guys who've watched the whole series and probably want closure like I do. But I just don't have the heart to keep cracking away at the same molding job when I don't really even need the casting, I have other foundry projects lining up after all. (mainly: another bronze axe that I will need by late September for my annual "boys' weekend" camping trip. Same trip I got hooked on molten metal during, back in 2013.) edit - video now up: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ewRHjE4cjdo Kang
  17. Makes me want to finish painting my big green worm, the old metal version of this one with the separate tail piece. I took completing it off my high priority list once my players defeated the ulgurstasta from the Greyhawk arena battle early on in Dungeon's Age of Worms adventure path. Not the first nor the last monster mini of mine to be defeated half-naked... I wonder why none of the plastic versions kept that tail piece? That I have seen, anyhow. You could move it farther away from the head end to make it seem bigger or smaller. Great job on yours, and the rats too! The cow-spotted one made me laugh when I pictured one of my neighbours having to milk it (I live out in the country near a little town whose main employer is a cheesery... which may not be a real word, but I'm gonna run with it anyhow) Kang
  18. If anyone is curious where all this cast aluminum comes from, I get it by recycling old car wheels. They are (edit - almost) always made of cast aluminum alloy A356, a wonderful general purpose casting alloy with low shrink, good flow, etc. But they're so big, how do I get them into my crucible, you may be asking. Well, I have to break them down first. There are many ways to do this. Some backyard foundry guys toss them on a bonfire, wait for them to get crumbly (technical term: hot short), whack them into pieces, and drag the pieces out of the fire. Some will melt, that gets retrieved out of the ashes later. This creates a fair bit of dross (losses to oxidation) in my experience. Some use a big log splitter, which I do not have access to. Sounds fun though, and a little scary. Some use power saws. I don't think I have the right saw or blade for that, but I've used a reciprocating saw with a blade for metal demolition - that works, but it's a bit of a slog that leaves the hands numb for an hour afterwards. That saw broke a couple weeks ago and I haven't had a chance to replace it (or maybe cast a new part and fix it? Nah, it was a cheap one) So I built a wood fired bath stack melter for scrapping wheels and other large aluminum scrap a couple years ago, which works very well. It is a 55 gallon drum with no top or bottom which sits on a grate on a stand with a big bucket of water under it. I put wood in the barrel up to the halfway point, then stack up to 3 wheels on top of that, then I light it from below. An hour and change later, here's what is in the bucket: There is a ~15 minute video of it in action on my YouTube channel, Tobho Mott, if anyone thinks that might be fun to watch. The sound the drips of molten aluminum make when they hit the water is really freaky, like Star Wars blaster sound effects sort of. And there is even a steamy red hot firefly love scene part way through. (Apparently they find my phone's camera light irresistible!). My videos are pretty much all either backyard foundry stuff or weird creatures (mainly bugs). This one has both! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RHPOSQmfwmA (edit - I forgot, I already posted a really short clip of this furnace in action early on in this thread.) And when I cast my next bronze axe to chop down my giant parasitic wasp-infested dead tree, that will tie them all together. I hope... Kang Edit - forgot to mention, the wood I used was most of the rest of the waste cuts from my friend's dead beetle killed ash tree. So the only thing in this entire melting rig that I did not save from the landfill or a slow boat to china to get melted down and turned into cheap lawn chairs was the 1/2" bars the grate was made of. The stand was made out of an old bed frame, and I got the barrels from a scrap yard. Even the wheels themselves were no longer wanted by their former owners, who were all but desperate to have them disappear, since the cars they used to go on died with their winter tires and cheap steel rims on. I really like the idea of making as much of my gear out of old junk as possible.
  19. Not familiar with the source material - what does the M stand for? Mentucky? Amazing mini, holy bazoley! Kang Exit - just reread the thread title, it's Midgar, isn't it?
  20. Maybe cover it up with some gloss sealer? The pics look great, I bet you could bring back that shine without too much trouble. Kang
  21. Do you mean the snake ring cast in silver? (It's a snake ring cast in silver). Or the Delft clay? (It's molding sand for casting metal jewelry) Talespinner's adventures in lost wax casting thread in the sculpting section shows some similar equipment to what may have been used to make the ring if you want to learn more, though the lost wax method TS uses involves a different way of making the molds which takes more time to set up but can produce castings with undercuts, etc., more easily and with slightly finer detail. Kang
  22. Cool idea! Hoser has it right. Guys who make plaques do this all the time, they have a blank plaque pattern or maybe a bunch of patterns with different commonly used details sculpted on them, but no text. The text is attached temporarily, the plaque is cast, then the letters are removed and used on different patterns, and the pattern is used for different letters. Mind you that is for sand casting, but I don't see why the same could not apply for lost wax. Except for the reusing the pattern part, obviously the wax pattern is "lost" before that could be possible. Kang
  23. Wow, cool stuff! Interesting approach with the pupil-less eyes. I'm not sure how I feel about that, but it is well executed. As for the rest... I know for sure, I like it a lot! PS. Good luck with the auction! Kang
  24. Awww, he's so adorable! :) I think there might have actually been a beholder on Futurama at some point... Kang