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[Looking for] Copper Caster


#1

I would like to have a cuff bracelet cast in copper, but so far have
not been able to find a caster in the NYC area who supplies castings
in copper. Can anyone recommend a local supplier - or anywhere else
who will work with copper? Thanks for your help, Penny B.


#2

Hi Penny,

Is there a reason it has to be cast? If you describe the item you’re
looking for to a metalsmith, s/he may be able to fabricate/forge it
for you. Just a thought.

Dave


#3

Most casters will not cast in copper for a number of reasons… the
first being that they have very little experience doing it… the
other is that copper does not lend itself well to the casting
process with standard machinery… We cast a fair amount of bracelets
in Jewelers bronze ( silicone bronze) which has kind of an darker 18k
color when it is polished . If you would like your bracelets cast in
this material, we could help you out. We also cast in gold, silver
and pewter ( different process ) as well as finishing. Best wishes,
Daniel Grandi Please contact us off list at sales@racecarjewelry.com


#4

Hi Penelope, I have done copper casting with good results. It
requires a lot of heat and also a high temp investment. Not seeing
the piece, I cannot give you any particulars. I would be glad to help
you if you can’t find anyone in NY. My shop is in Brunswick, Maine.
Email me offline at @John_A_Henkel to discuss further. John, J.A.Henkel
Co.,Inc., Moldmaking Casting Finishing


#5

Daniel I have run into the comments about copper being difficult to
cast a number of times. It is only laziness that has kept me from
about learning why it is difficult to cast. Time to begin learning.
Why is copper difficult to cast? You mentioned a number of reasons.
What are they? I am doing some metal sculptures (best term) of
Pitcher Plants out of sheet copper; Jack in the Pulpits will be
coming soon. Some aspects of some of the species would be much
easier to do if I could cast them. Comments?

Bill


#6

I don’t cast metal for others but I have seen copper sucessfully
cast using a platnum caster. That is the type that is vertical
rather than horizontal. It takes off very fast and throws the
copper in well.

Pauline


#7

Bill One reason is that copper is not very fluid when molten. Second
if you do not keep oxygen away from it when melting you will make
lots of insoluble copper oxides that make it even less fluid.
Thirdly all pure metals are difficult to cast due to the fact that
they transition from liquid to solid instantaneously with no
intermediate slushy state. As the metal cools in the mold it shrinks
and if there is no slushy stage you tend to get significant
shrinkage porosity. This is because the casting can’t draw metal
from the sprues and runners to fill the shrinkage. One way around
this is to use sprues that are larger than the casting so that the
casting will solidify before the sprue.

That being said you can cast it but it will require attention to

all the details and most likely much trial and error to get your
process right.

Jim


@James_Binnion
James Binnion Metal Arts
360-756-6550


#8

Jim thank you! It all makes sense. Now to speculate. Would I want to
use a “platinum” investment instead of regular investment? What
would I want the flask temperature to be when casting? For example
use a 15dwt man’s nugget ring. Any screwups would not likely show in
this case!

Bill


#9
 Daniel I have run into the comments about copper being difficult
to cast a number of times. It is only laziness that has kept me
from about learning why it is difficult to cast. Time to begin
learning. Why is copper difficult to cast? You mentioned a number
of reasons. What are they? I am doing some metal sculptures (best
term) of Pitcher Plants out of sheet copper; Jack in the Pulpits
will be coming soon. Some aspects of some of the species would be
much easier to do if I could cast them. Comments?  

Hi Bill, Copper requires higher heat as just one criteria… The
metal does not flow well. It can be cast, but requires
experimentation with the piece so there would be some losses … I
would suggest sand casting at an artists foundry such as the paul
king foundry ( do an internet search as i don’t have the address)
particularly if your designs are somewhat on the larger side… Hope
this helps. Daniel Grandi

We do casting, finishing,soldering, cnc, stamping etc… for people
in the trade