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Miniatures silver human figures

I am looking for advice about how to create small silver human
figures, about 1/2 " high, that have sharp identifiable features. I
want to integrate these into necklaces, pins, earrings and small
scale found metal sculptures. I do not yet know how to do lost-wax
casting. Do you know anyone who has created these? and would PMC be
a good way to make these?


Mr. Volker Kracht of B. Kracht, Inc. has made all of these using the
lost wax process. I have part of his finished collection and he has
the molds for all of the men. Volker is a master jeweler and his work
is outstanding. He has designed everything from these little guys,
necklaces, rings, charms, etc.

I am a porcelain artist who has used PMC & Art Clay…this is why I
went into Lost Wax. You could make them from PMC but your not going
to get the detail you could achieve by using wax.

Email me if you would like more about the little guys.

Dawn Vertrees

If I were you, I think I would contact an accomplished wax carver
and a good caster, and have them create the figures to your


Jerry - I’ve done small scale human figures in wax. If you need the
wax master model cast and polished I can provide this service as
well. Let me know if you want to see additional photographs of
samples. Mostly I’ve done soldiers in the past.

Margie Mersky

a good way to make these? 

Railroad hobby store, plastic figures, cast them

Richard Hart

Hi Jerry,

Although you don’t do lost wax casting, you could still carve your
own waxes then send them to a caster. If you want some made up right
now I would be glad to be of service. I make micro miniature dog
sculptures as well as “portrait” carvings from photographs by carving
wax and I do my own casting. Examples of my work can be seen on my
website if you’re interested.

Marta Irvin

Railroad hobby store, plastic figures, cast them

I agree that this works quite well. I’ve seen them cast and added to
a variety of pins and brooches (and even for chess pieces that had
uniform bases) when Bridgette Clavette was doing a series with them
(head of the Metals department at NBCCD – school I studied at).

72 pieces, unpainted (note HO scale == 1:87… Approx. 1.9cm (0.75")
in height):

versus 6 pieces painted:

It’d worked with plastic, then when you are happy with the piece
cast it (or have it cast). Although you can’t really pin (drill a
hole and glue a small piece of steel wire) the piece in these cases,
they also won’t be taking much abuse before you cat them and then
they’ll stick together just fine (being a solid piece of metal is
good that way).

Glues used in plastic craft:

I am not sure how any of these puddies would burn out, but 2 part
epoxy burns out fine:

Misc sampling of people figures:

Common Scales:

Dollhouse Scale 1"=1’ (1:12)
G Scale Modelling 3/8"=1’ (1:22)
Half Scale Modelling 1/2"=1’ (1:25)
O Scale Modelling 1/4"=1’ (1:48)
HO Scale Modelling 1/8"=1’ (1:87)
N Scale Modelling 1/16"=1’ (1:160)

“In Scale” is the relationship between the size of two items. In
model railroading, it is generally expressed as a ratio.

For example: HO scale is 1:87, that is one inch on the model to 87
inches in the real world.

Best of luck,
K. David Woolley
Fredericton, NB
Diversiform Metal Art & Jewellery

Railroad hobby store, plastic figures, cast them 

I’ve cast these as an experiment (in a class I was taking) and they
work great – but these little figures are copyrighted. (The ones I
bought from a railroad hobby store have copyright notices on the
plastic bars that hold them together and all over the packaging.) It
would be unwise to use these in a line of jewelry.

C Rose

Good point about the copyright. Maybe I can find some that are
public domain. In casting, what’s the process? making a plaster mold
first and then wax from that and then lost wax?


Why can’t one just burn it out and cast it? When you buy one copy, I
think that you have the license to own one copy. Burning it out and
casting it seems to me the be about the same as throwing a paint job
on it and selling it. One can’t enhance someone elses work?

Copyright not withstanding, I would suggest either:

  1. Sprue the plastic figure and burnout as you would wax
  2. Use Room Temperature Vulcanizing (RTV) to make a mould, inject
    with wax and sprue the wax model.

Advice for RTV:

  • Use a wax with a little hear to attach to the feet.
  • Place suspended in a frame.
  • Place a piece of square wax, or other place holder in each of the
    four corners.
  • Half fill and let fully harden (about 24 hours for some).
  • Remove corner holders.
  • Lightly coat top/corners in Petrolium Jelly (Vasiline/etc)
  • Fill to complete mould and let stand.
  • Remove from frame and open and remove original, do clean up.

In this way you will not have to use a knife to separate the two
halves as is the case with Vulcanizing rubber moulds.

Best of luck,
K. David Woolley
Fredericton, NB
Diversiform Metal Art & Jewellery

same as throwing a paint job on it and selling it. One can't
enhance someone elses work? 

Absolutely not! Not legally. It’s unlikely that the copyright police
are going to go find your couple of bracelets and bring action
against you, either. You’re not “enhancing” anything, your pinching
their design, plain and simple. If you credit them for it and
possibly pay royalties if needed, that’s different, but you can’t
call it your own and I don’t know why you’d want to anyway, 'cos it’s
not. For myself, I can see that the idea of using store-bought
figures is attractive, but then again it defeats the purpose of being
an artist, doesn’t it? It’s easy enough, if one has sculpting skills,
to just make your own…

This type of application is perfect for PMC or Silver Art Clay. If
you do not feel your figures are great, then hire an artist to create
these for you, paying them for the original and all rights to
reproduce them without additional money paid to the creator of the
figures. Can also be done in wax. I have no problem with you looking
at the figures you admire for the inspiration and scale that seems
important in your project when you create your own handmade figures.

Beth Katz