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sculpting for production?

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Hey I might be sculpting a mini for a new company with un-advanced casting capabilities. I have sculpted many times before but never anything that will be cast. I know a little about how casting works and they happen to be casting in resin but i'm still a little confused about how to know what will need to multi part and what constitutes as an undercut and other important things i should know. Anyone have any good articles or tips. Any advice will be greatly appreciated. Thanks.

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I haven't sculpted for resin-casting, only pewter (with vulcanized rubber molds). I don't know how the moldmaking process differs. But here's some advice for pewter.

 

If you aren't sure, discuss things with the person who will be doing the casting. Send sketches and ask for advice on how to make the design more mold-friendly. If the caster is new, he/she should forward your questions and ask advice of someone else with more experience.

 

Do your homework and look at existing figures. They were successfully cast! :;): Look at how the sculptor worked out the pose, the arrangement of cloth, weapons, equipment, teeth and horns and spikes, etc. Imagine how the two halves of the mold had to wrap around the figure and meet at the mold-line.

 

If you turn the figure so the mold-line is perpendicular to your line of sight, then an undercut would be a void that you couldn't see because there was metal in the way, which the mold would have to wrap around in order to fill the void. The underside of a skirt/loincloth is a typical area that gets filled with putty so it doesn't create an undercut. A lot of figures have pouches or miscellaneous volumes because the sculptor recognized a potential undercut and eliminated it. Minor undercuts (1mm or so) are acceptable for pewter-casting because the rubber mold bends when the caster is removing the newly cast figures from the mold; I heard that casting in styrene plastic, however, was unforgiving because the molds are metal.

 

Make a second part whenever the 3-D shape of the figure prohibits using a single two-piece mold; or when you want to give options for heads, arms, weapons, etc.; or when the figure is so bulky that it would be cheaper to make the figure in two hollow halves and omit the material in the middle (see Reaper's Fire Giant Queen and Frost Giant Princess). When sculpting for pewter, sometimes you can flatten a pose slightly in order to sculpt a figure as a single piece, and leave it to the buyer to bend the metal copy out-of-plane to a more interesting shape -- buyers rarely do, but it's always an option.

 

Good luck,

Derek

 

Hey I might be sculpting a mini for a new company with un-advanced casting capabilities. I have sculpted many times before but never anything that will be cast. I know a little about how casting works and they happen to be casting in resin but i'm still a little confused about how to know what will need to multi part and what constitutes as an undercut and other important things i should know. Anyone have any good articles or tips. Any advice will be greatly appreciated. Thanks.

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That's cool. I gather you are still in town. This guy does Tom Meier's mold-making and casting. I'm sure he'd give you a few tips.

 

Majestic Mold Making

Brian Hitsman

513-863-3334

 

Also, call the guys at Ironwind Metals they do casting for lots of people. Email me if you get a figure cast. I'll buy a few.

 

Christian

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