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Water soluble wax question


#1

As I was exploring different lost wax casting info, I came across
water soluble wax, and I was curious as to wether one could use this
kind of wax to make the pattern. To my understanding its normally
used to create a hollow space inside of regular modeling wax. I have
never done any investment casting, just lead casting bullets, and I
want to try some but at the moment I can’tafford to buy/build a
burnout oven. So my thinking was to use the water soluble wax in
place of the regular wax, that must be burnt out, there by skipping
the burn out phase. I realize that I would run into other problems
withother steps, but I was wondering if my uneducated theory might
work (theoretically)?

First time trying to post a question in the community, so if I’m not
doing it in the correct fashion please forgive me.

Thanks,
Erik


#2

Hi Erik,

Unfortunately, no. You can’t use the water soluble wax for much of
anything detailed. It’s soft and flakey, and likes to come apart.
Not at all like a proper carving or modeling wax. It’s sort of like
a flakey candle wax. Once you start working with real modeling
waxes, that’ll give you something to compare against. Vastly
different.

Nice thought though.

Regards,
Brian


#3

Erik, I am not sure your method would work as I have never tried it.
However, if your main interest in using the water soluble wax is
because you don’t have a burn out kiln, I do have a suggestion. You
can easily improvise a very very inexpensive kiln using a clay flower
pot and a small electric portable burner. Line the flowerpot with
aluminum foil. Place your invested flask which contains your wax
model on the portable burner, sprue hole down. Put the flowerpot on
top of the flask, and set the burner on high. It is best to do this
outside as you will have smoke from the burning wax. It should take
about an hour or more to burn out the wax. Then, you will be ready to
cast—assuming you have a means of casting. If not, check out Lost
Wax steam casting. There are several excellent tutorials on the
internet with detailed instructions.

Alma


#4

Erik- Welcome to the group. I’m guessing that water soluble wax
would dissolve while being invested in water based investment.

When I was in school we used to just put the flasks on top of a
metal screen, placed them over an old gas burner and placed a large
coffee can with holes drilled into it for the fumes to escape. Crude,
but it worked.

Be sure to ventilate well.

Have fun and make lots of jewelry.
Jo Haemer
timothywgreen.com


#5
You can't use the water soluble wax for much of anything detailed. 

I used water soluble wax once to make a silver shell pendant.

My mom had a favorite shell, half a bivalve, like the shell from the
gas station.

I covered the outside with melted (with heat) water soluble wax,
then removed it from the shell (I used petrolatum as a release
agent), then I poured melted green wax into the impression (well, I
didn’t pour it, more ladled it in with an electric wax tool), then
when it was thick enough I dropped the whole thing in water and
melted off the water soluble wax. I had a perfect shell (wax) I cast
it in silver. And she still wears it.

Paf Dvorak


#6

I have always been curious about ideas like this as well. There has
to bea more efficient way to cast wax models than firing up a 2000
watt burn outoven for hours. I also believe there must be a way to
simplify even steam casting where again, because of the idea that
you must get rid of all the moisture in the investment and to keep
the flask hot enough to avoid freezing the pour, it is recommended
to cast at a very high temperature. (this canbe done on an old hot
plate for cooking but only the vintage hot plates have the right
coils that conduct so well).

I started out just two years ago making jewelry as a hobby and have
been using the delft clay sand casting methods and have been very
pleased with the results. No pre heating is required. But of course
you cannot produce undercuts and there is more finishing work.
However, with planning you can make items in pieces to achieve
undercuts.

I found a vintage mint condition hot plate and plan on trying steam
casting in order to try better castings. So perhaps I would suggest
that method since you can burn out wax and pre heat the flask with
this method.

Has anyone found an even less energy involving method of casting
from wax models?

Rick Powell