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Everything posted by Kang

  1. 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
  2. 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.
  3. Nice bunch of ruffians, I'd pick another alley for sure! :) Kang
  4. Kang

    Some of my first minis

    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
  5. 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
  6. 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
  7. 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
  8. 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.
  9. 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?
  10. 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
  11. 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
  12. 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
  13. 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
  14. Kang


    Awww, he's so adorable! :) I think there might have actually been a beholder on Futurama at some point... Kang
  15. Took another shot at casting those dogs with the key hook tails over the weekend, this time with a plaster light switch cover plate pattern also in the mold. One of the dogs did not fill, nor did part of the fence they are sitting on. I think I made the gate into that dog's head a little too small. Also, I should have maybe poured it a little hotter to get the very thin section of the cover plate to fill before freezIng off. But other than not filling, it was the best mold of those dogs I've been able to pull so far. No broken sand; I was so sure it would work! There is video of the molding, melting, pouring, and the shakeout of the mold on my YouTube channel which is called Tobho Mott, if anyone is interested. It is parts 5 and 6 of my "greensand molding using followers" playlist. I embedded it above, then removed it, then restored it as just a the link. Pretty sure I am within how the mods have said they'd like this sort of thing done based on a thread called "culling" in the KS subforum. I have decided to start using YT more because of the ongoing photobucket ransom debacle, which has decimated this thread. That is the reason why I am back in here now, editing the missing pix and links back into almost every post... For non-foundry hobbyists, part 4 and 6 might be the most entertaining - red hot crucible and molten metal footage, plus the molds being shaken out. The rest will be of interest too, if you want to learn about how sand molds for metal casting are made.
  16. Well, I'm Intrigued. And completely stumped. Can't wait to see what you're making! Kang
  17. Keep'em coming, I'm loving these vintage minis! Kang
  18. Wow, great translucent effect on the abdomens! These are some really awesome gross bugs. Well done. Kang
  19. Tried to reproduce another iron casting in aluminum over the weekend. A key hook shaped like dogs sitting on a fence, with their dangling tails being the hooks. The tails were a problem, since their parting line was not lying flat on the molding board like the rest of the 'pattern'. There are a couple of ways to mold parts like this - "coping down", where you carve away the sand to accommodate the irregular parting line, is the simplest and normally the most appropriate for one-off castings like this. I tried it, but it was hard to carve out the right parts of the sand in the tight spaces between the dogs tails and their butts. So I use another method that is more suitable for casting several of a given part or for situations like this where coping down is too hard: I made some followers. Followers are loose pattern pieces that change the parting line to make it flat for easier molding. You ram them up in the mold with the pattern, then remove them before making the other half of the mold. I made them out of polymer clay, baked them, then carved and sanded them so they "followed" the parting line as closely as I could get them to, and gave it another try. The followers worked really well - they totally were not the reason why the casting failed! But I did get a nice casting of a candle holder out of the pour that I put in the same mold simply because there was room for it in the flask. (See attached pix) Since I can't just dump a bunch of pix on photobucket to share on forums anymore, I dumped a bunch of video on YouTube instead. That was more work but kind of fun, I may do it again some time. The "movie" is in 4 parts, adding up to something a little less than an hour. Which is longer than the subject of molding with followers really needs. I tried to cut out or speed up the boring parts though, and really it is all covered in the first 2 parts... But if seeing me totally screw up the mold out of sheer laziness followed by a little glowing hot crucible action footage sounds good, by all means feel free to skip ahead to parts 3 and 4. :) So, if anyone's interested in seeing how sand casting works (or sometimes doesn't), here's a search string to help find the youtube playlist I made of my attempts to cast these dogs: 'tobho mott youtube greensand molding using followers' - I think the URL I had posted here before might have been illegal, many apologies. Channel is linked in sig also, at least for now. edit - I did some searching and it seems like youtube links are ok, with links preferred over embedded videos. Spend some time today adding in links tha I'd avoided using or had removed after that discovery. Here is a link to my "Greensand Molding Using Followers" youtube playlist: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zVQuZmsu2c8&list=PLo6k_ZP-VFj4lIa_xNc7b3RrkijFD_HEa Hope you enjoy it as much as I enjoyed making it! Later on in the weekend, my daughter and I began painting some plaster of Paris boxes, I guess maybe they could be jewelry boxes(?), That I made as test patterns for molding and casting. The one I'll eventually try to sand cast is made of hydrostone (just like the candle holder in the attached pix), for better chances of surviving getting rammed in a sand mold. But I had cast a couple in PoP to practice when my molds first arrived, and they were just sitting around gathering dust until we started painting them with my old craft acrylics. No pix of those yet but I'll post some when we finish them. My son wanted to join us and work on one of my old minis (his 2nd ever) that he started painting a while back, but perhaps unsurprisingly, he had misplaced it. By that time the kids had started fighting anyhow and would not stop when I warned them, so I had to take the paints away for a bit. Such is life wih young children some days... :) Kang
  20. Nice mini, the effect you pulled off on the eyes really works - there's a glow, but it's dull. Just like his wits. :) Kang
  21. It worked - I really can see the stink... Great job! Kang
  22. Finished! Flashing ground/filed off, screw holes drilled out, then I hit it with a wire brush drill bit to give a satin finish (edit - and to blend in the file marks from where I took off the flashing): edit - since taking this pic I got it to take on a darker, more lustrous shine by giving it a quick wipe with a paper towel and some 'Mothers Mag-Aluminum Polish'.
  23. I had a long weekend due to Canada Day, and it even held off on raining for part of it! So I got out and cast those antlers... Video of the shakeout: (youtube link removed - navigate via link in sig or search for "tobho mott youtube first shakeout on my new molding bench" if you are interested) Kang
  24. Thanks for confirming that. I would "like" your post but I just can't make myself do it. :) BUT... I just remembered I can upload pix here! Not sure how I forgot that; got used to having to use external hosting on some other forums I guess. Here's the first mold I rammed up on the new bench. Just for practice, I won't be casting it yet, and I did not bother cutting any gating or a sprue. I just wanted to see how the height of the bench works out in practice (works out great) and also figure out how to mold this moose antlers coat hook, which has an irregular parting line. I had so use some more advanced molding techniques - a temporary "false cope" to act as a "follower" in order to mold the drag, then copious "coping down" to establish the parting line on the drag before ramming up the cope. (I said it before but do not expect people to memorize all the terminology - the cope is the top half of a sand mold, the drag is the bottom half.) Kang
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