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Everything posted by Kang

  1. First time I ever saw anyone summon a mount with a built-in passenger compartment! . . . . . wait for it... . . . . Howdah he do that? (so sorry) Kang
  2. Advanced skills on display here, super cool! Kang
  3. Alfyn Crowkiller will always be a Wildling from beyond the Wall to me, but he looks awesome as a Viking! Very well done. Kang
  4. Here is a (~15 minutes) video I just uploaded to accompany my entry in one of the home foundry forums for metal casting hobbyists I am a member of. I am not sure if I can post the URL for the forum. It is not attached to a business like these forums, but they do accept donations from members in exchange for extra upload space for pix as well as posting permissions in a few special subforums, to help keep the lights on, the software upgraded, and the bills paid. A grey area in my mind, rules-wise... To be safe I will not post a URL unless someone asks or tells me it's OK. 'The Home Foundry' is quite a new forum, not "Alloy Avenue", which I know some of our members here are already familiar with. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k5FkA22RWr4 Hope you guys enjoy stuff like this! The video is just part 1, showing how I made the Styrofoam pattern for a spooky new cast aluminum belt buckle. I tried to make my project something that anyone could do who has some kind of a way to melt and pour metal and who owns a bucket of sand, so that the video could be more interesting for casting newbies and old timers alike. You will see me using a band saw and a belt sander here, but I still could have done this project even if the only tools I own were a hacksaw, a file, and a sheet of sandpaper. Oh, and a hot glue gun. In part 2 I will use a drill press and a drill as well, but the press is also optional I would have liked to enter my foam-cast aluminum electric Jack-O'Desk Lamp, but the rules of the contest ask for a new project that hasn't been shown online before, which rules Jack out. For this project I am using lost foam casting because, as you will see in the video, I have a sizable hoard of styrofoam skulls and other Hallowe'en décor I've been gradually accumulating over the years, which is perfect for casting stuff like this. Which of course is the reason I've been hoarding the stuff. Part 2, showing the pour and the finishing of the belt buckle will be going up sometime before Hallowe'en, barring some unforeseen disaster. I know I am not the only one on this site who casts metal, so I just thought I'd share the info about this contest going on in case anyone wants to try and beat me to that sweet, sweet prize money. I am not even sure we have enough entrants for judging to take place yet. Better sign up quick if you're interested! Here's another video where Dave, the new forum's owner, announces the contest and gives a little more detail about how to enter: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eqaGUePrM28 Kang
  5. 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
  6. Saw hot glue guns at the dollar store yesterday, so I looked up "wax pens" to see how much you saved yourself. Does $29 seem about right? Who knew, "wax pens" is also what some kind of drug paraphernalia are called?! Had to scroll past a bunch of electric vaporizer cannabis oil inhaling devices or whatever they are, to get to the kind of wax pens that are meant for sculpting. Can't these stoners come up with any original ideas? Oh, wait, yeah, right, dumb question, never mind... :) Best decision to take a DIY approach in my foundry projects ever was spending $200 on a tiny little flux-core welding machine that only goes up to 80A, which is barely powerful enough for what I used it for. I made my own crucible lift-out tongs and a pouring shank out of scrap metal I had lying around. Each of which goes for more than what my welder cost me, if you buy them new from foundry equipment suppliers. Now I have a perfectly functional set of crucible tools custom made to fit my #12 crucible, AND I still have a very crappy little underpowered welding machine (I don't even have to unplug the stove or anything to use it; just uses a normal plughole) that I can use to make more foundry gear. Long live DIY! The woodburner to wax pen conversion idea is a great one too; very nicely done, y'allz. Kang
  7. Ron Young recently came out with a second edition of his book, Contemporary Patination, My buddy who cast those dog-hooks for me bought it (despite cringing over the price tag), but now that he has it, he says he has no regrets and highly recommends it. Real recipes, not just "order patina mystery mix #34 from my online store and apply hot" type of stuff (there may be a it of that too but not an excessive amount). Sounds like a winner. Just FYI. Kang
  8. Yeah, I had tried to prime my rubbery plastic toy frog with Tamiya fine surface primer IIRC, a waste of the good stuff as it turned out. That may actually have been the final straw that made me give up using anything on minis that comes out of a spray can. Brush-on everything for me ever since, just too many hassles with dullcote, primers, you name it. Holy moly that elder brain scene pic is amazing. Thanks for the update, Shin! Kang
  9. Oh man, I think he would have a stroke if he heard you say that after all the trouble he went through getting his videos to stay public AND have music in them, LoL... You can post all the ingredients in common patina reagents you want, but Liver of Sulphur is always gonna sound like a potion ingredient to me... (seriously though, that info is much appreciated, thanks) Kang
  10. Somehow I missed this thread. Awesome stuff! Kang
  11. Sweeeeeeet! Also creepy. In a good way! Great castings TS. Thanks for showing the trees etc., too. Was the multi-part design of these critters necessary for your lost wax casting setup? Guessing not, and that maybe you cut them up like that because you wanted them to be ready for spin-casting one day if the opportunity arises. But I am no lost wax expert, just a casting hobbyist and always eager to learn about different techniques... Was that you I saw mentioned in DSM's October newsletter as well? If so, congrats on that! Kang
  12. Scythe and Squid look great! Thanks for sharing them. Kang
  13. What moonglum said. I have this guy at home in a box somewhere and... well, what malefactus said! (ie. I would not have expected this old sculpt to look so good painted) Kang
  14. I'm not normally an 'army guy', but I really like these. Makes me want to re-watch HBO's Rome again! Well done. Kang
  15. Very nice work CO, I can't even get a base coat I'm happy with in 2 hours. Kang
  16. As promised, Worldtraveler sent me the ceramic shell molded lost wax cast silicon bronze dogs and light switch cover. He also made a 4-part youtube series showing the entire process. the first 3 parts are an hour long each, so it is a big time commitment, but there is a lot of detail and some great tips in there. I know we have a couple people here doing lost wax casting, so this may be helpful to them even if they are not using the shell molds. He shows some of the techniques and tools he uses for working his waxes and everything. Another channel that would be even more helpful to those members would be Thehomefoundry, formerly known as aonemarine, AKA my buddy Dave, who does some really cool lost wax and lost PLA casting in block investment molds using vacuum assist casting. He (I'm back to Worldtraveler now) would not release his part 4 until I posted video of unboxing the pieces he sent me, and now that has happened, so his complete series is now available on youtube. He is not a youtuber really, he's more of a guy who makes fun of people who call themselves that, who backed himself into a corner where he had to make these videos or look like a big hypocrite (haha). So it was fun to see him give it a try himself. He had a lot of issues with his stuff getting pulled offline due to copyrighted music, but they are all publicly available now on the Worldtraveler channel for anyone who's interested: Here are links to Worltraveler's videos. They follow my 7-part series on 'greensand molding using followers' which can be found linked in various posts above, where I tried and failed 3 times to sand-cast those same dogs in aluminum. Shell Casting part 1: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uIWYNM4gR-o Part 2: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=12PxMan5qG0 Part 3: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T5G4uaMUC34 My unboxing video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1RCuf7h9PpM Shell casting part 4: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D6mUFNLn-24 Here are the still images of both the dog-hooks and the light switch cover plate. Amazing patina! He says he did it using heat and 'liver of sulphur', but that the method of applying the LoS is a secret... Heck, the ingredient itself sounds secret, or at least semi-magical. Definitely sounds like a potion ingredient! Kang
  17. Love the bunny rabbit btw! :) I bet you could investment cast an actual (dried) seahorse. Burnout would be long compared to lost wax or lost PLA but I've seen lost insect castings, lost flowers/plants, etc. I believe even bone can be burned out of a mold, though at some point it's likely easier/faster to just make a silicone mold of the subject and cast a wax to invest. Youtuber worldtraveler, a friend of mine, has posted 3 parts of a 4-part tutorial on ceramic shell casting if anyone is interested. Lot of good tips there in the early parts for working on waxes. Kang
  18. Yes please! Never too many pix in a casting thread... :) Kang
  19. <something something> when pigs fly. :) Awesome stuff! Kang
  20. ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn! Translation: Awesome! :) Kang
  21. Nice! Love the heraldry on the shields. Kang
  22. My group met and overcame that exact struggle a couple levels ago... The solution: a portable hole! These days we spend more time making sure the furniture contains no hidden sharp corners or extradimensional spaces than we do checking for traps or discussing how our moves could be done in a slightly different path to avoid attacks of opportunity in the middle of someone's turn! :) Beds and pic look great! Nice work. Kang
  23. Haha, she looks like she just caught a glimpse of a tarrasque swarm coming over the horizon. Thanks for posting this, I love classic old minis! Kang
  24. A lot of great work in here but that oozing lava w/OSL really stood out for me too! Great stuff... Kang