Saturday, December 12, 2015

Ninja Turtle sculpts on their way to the caster

I shipped out the greens of the turtles last evening to a professional resin caster. The sculpts are now on their merry way to be cast up :)

It's going to be about 6-8 weeks before the resin casts are all done and in my hands; say end of January, beginning of February. I'll keep you all posted.

In the meanwhile, time for me to go back to practice my sculpting and hopefully some gaming during the upcoming Holidays (you know the original purpose for sculpting these guys in the first place, before I got sidetracked with trying to get them cast up) ;)

Happy Holidays!

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Casting the Other Two Ninja Turtles

Got the remaining two turtles cast up.

Here's the first half of the mold in progress:

The finished mold:

First pull:

The left hand sai didn't turn out so I cut additional air vents into the mold:

 Second pull:

Third pull:


Fourth pull:

Overall a large improvement over the previous attempts at mold making and casting. I'm rather happy about how these casts turned out.

The one bad thing is that the mold for the katana didn't turn out properly; the casting of the katana blade is too thick and doesn't have the right blade geometry. I'm going to have to file them to give them the proper edges and point by hand.

Here's more pics of the casts from this mold:

While I was cutting apart the sai from the fourth pull, the exacto-knife cut right through the cast and sliced opened my left middle finger-tip  :(

I had to go he hospital to get stitches for the wound. I need to go back to get the stitches out in a week.

It was a painful reminder to be very cautious when working with sharp blades and not to let familiarity make you careless with any potentially dangerous tool :(

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Second Attempt at Pressure Casting

Since the main issues with the casts from the last pulls were the weapon arms, I figured I'd just cast up a few more of the weapon arms to replace the bad ones. 
So I placed the syringe tip into the pour vent that leads directly to the weapons arms, expecting to at least get a clean cast of the weapon arms. 
Turns out that doing this allowed the resin to flow through the mold in a way that resulted in clean casts for the entire figure! 
Pull 5:

Pull 6:

Pull 7:

Unfortunately the mold is already tearing at places and won't be good for many more pulls  :(
The mold was poorly designed for flow of resin/air as well as the placement of the parting lines for casting. The way I sculpted the originals have too many deep undercuts that makes it hard to get the casting out of the mold; resulting in more wear and tear on the mold.
I did manage to get a hold of Jacqualine, the very talented and experienced caster who did the casts for the female space marines, so I'm plan on contracting her to make the mold and create quality castings to share with my friends :)

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

First Try At Casting Under Pressure

Results of the first pull:

The resin didn't make through to the left nun-chuk hand and to the bottom of his shell. The upper half of the staff also didn't turn out. So I cut a few more air vents in the mold to improve the flow. 

Second pull:

The additional vents in the mold did the trick but the resin didn't make it into the left staff forearm for some reason this time.

Third pull:

No clue what happened this time; the entire lower torso of one of the figures was missing as well as the staff :(

Fourth pull:

I didn't make any changes to the mold from the last pull, but the result here was pretty good (except for the left hand nun-chuk of course).

Here are the castings from the first 4 pulls with a quick removal of the flashes:

Broke the right hand nun-chuk while cleaning the model; the resin seems more brittle than I recall.

Overall I have enough clean casts to make 2 sets of miniatures with the result :)

Still have a lot of kinks to work out but not a bad start overall to learning how to cast using a pressure pot.

Saturday, October 31, 2015

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Ninja Turtles: getting ready to make the mold

Got the first 2 sculpts set halfway in the clay to the parting line. 

My pressure pot has a 9" diameter at the bottom, so I had to resize the green Lego base to fit. I can only get 2 sculpts in per mold at that size. I need to go buy more Legos before working on the remaining 2 sculpts. 

Speaking of pressure pots,  I've been getting my pressure pot and compressor set up while I wait for my order of the mold making and casting materials to be delivered.

Monday, October 19, 2015

Ninja Turtles minis; preparating the sculpts for mold making.

Another quick update.

I had to cut off the weapon arm to make them separate parts in order to prepare the model for mold making/casting.

 Test fit; the arm fits snugly enough to stay on without any blue tac or glue.

Here's the rest of the Turtles with their weapon arms ready to go.  I probably should of separated the right forearm on the Quarterstaff one as well but I'll see when I make the mold. The Turtle with the Katana should be fine as is.

And finally, removed from the cork base and ready to be placed into clay for the first step of making the 2 part mold for casting.

Monday, September 28, 2015

Update: Ninja Turtles Sculpts done!

Just a quick update: finally finished sculpting the little turtles. 

Took me awhile to finish sculpting the weapons; for some reason, sculpting weapons takes me the longest time for me.

Now it's onto mold making and casting.

My last attempt at mold making/casting didn't fare too well but I did a bit more research, so hopefully things will go better this time around. Wish me luck!