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Wax, cast - book or class


#1

Hello!!

Traditionally when I need to make a cast of something to make
multiple copies of I first make the piece out of silver, have a
rubber mold made at the caster and than have mutlitple pieces
made from the cast. I guess I could probably in some cases skip
making pieces out of silver first and maybe carve them from wax.
Can anyone suggest a class I can take in NYC or a book I can buy
to get started on learning how to make wax models for casting? I
know there is alot stuff out there in regard to learning from - I
just want to “weed out” some of the worst sources to learn
from…

Thanks!!!

DeDe


#2

Try the 92nd st Y on the East side. They have lots of jewelry
classes and I’m pretty sure they offer wax casting as well. A
"classic" book on wax is by Kallenberg “Modelling in Wax for
Jewelry…” Look at the books sold in Metalliferous to see if
there are any other wax books of interest to you.

Oh, if you are willing to venture to White Plains with Metro
North, there are wax casting classes taught at the Westchester
County art center (part of Westchester Community College).


#3

DeDe- Fashion Institute of Technology, NYC has a program for
Jewelry design, as well as benchwork basics. They have a full
time, 2-year program, a one year program, and a program for
continuing ed. students. There were some classes on wax carving
there this summer, but I believe they will be finished this Tue.
If you were to take a class there, I highly reccomend Chie
Tertani as an instructor, he teaches beginning wax carving, as
well as white metal model making for the costume jewelry
industry. He’s tough, but he can get a feel for what you can
handle, and pushes you to your limit. Anthony Lent is the
Chairman of the Jewelry department, although he is on vacation
right now, I believe Isolina, his secretary, is still working.
Give him a call to find out more- 212-217-7826.

Good luck.
Timothy Goodwin
@tmn8tr


#4

DeDe, I’ll say ditto to everything Tim already told you.
Especially his comments on Chie Tertani. He’s an excellent
instructor. He’s very demanding as Tim said. If you do decide
to take any of his classes, please fell free to bombard him with
questions. He loves to teach his students. Good luck, Siobhan

// – E-N-D O-F P-O-S-T-I-N-G --//


#5
 Traditionally when I need to make a cast of something to make
multiple copies of I first make the piece out of silver, have
a rubber mold made at the caster and than have mutlitple pieces
made from the cast.  I guess I could probably in some cases
skip making pieces out of silver first and maybe carve them
from wax.

If you are making multiple copies, you are better off continuing
to do it this way. The mold maker can make a mold directly from
your silver model, whereas if you made a wax model, it would have
to be cast in silver and then the mold is made. This also means
an additional shrinkage from your original piece (2 processes = 2
shrinkages, rather than one). I usually use white metal models
when I make multiples (like Rick, I also worked in the R.I.
jewelry industry) and for one of a kind pieces I use wax.

If you are interested in wax working classes, the 92nd Street Y
offers “Working With Wax” - 5 sessions for $145. The # is
(212)996-1100. Also, I think The New School and Pratt offer
jewelry classes, but I’m not sure if they have a wax class. Hope
this helps!

Jill
@jandr
http://members.tripod.com/~jilk/

<-- end of posting -->


#6

Dear Timothy:

Three years ago I took a couple of classes at FIT because I
always wanted to work with metal and make jewerly. The teachers
I had for the two classes I took were AWFUL. One teacher a woman
a couple of years older than myself (maybe mid thirties) who
taught a basic jewelry class was reluctant to show the class any
real jewerlers tricks. We had to make rings in her class as an
assignment. I wanted to make something with braided twists of
silver wire (which is simply two pieces of wire twisted
together, something I didn’t know at the time). She told me that
was too difficult for a beginner and I had to take an advanced
class to learn that!!! Then she hardly showed us how to use ANY
of the tools properly.As a result the whole class just made these
awkward metal bands which were badly polished and covered in
solder.

The other class I took was taught by Anthony Lent. He told me he
could tell I did’nt have a fine arts background during the 2nd
class (I graduated from the Rhode Island School of Design in
Graphics design and I studied fine arts/ painting at Suny
Purchase AND I take art classes regularly around my full time
Design job to keep up on skill I don’t always excersise)

The problem was my sense of design was the opposite of his own
so I was ridiculed for it. He may dig hand sawed brooches with
150 piercing in a two inch square, I don’t. I would never rip
into another artist if I didn’t like or agree with their vision.
Especially if I was a teacher!!!

Anyway, I found a wonderful teacher at the School of Visual
Arts. She teaches all the jewerly classes. Her name is Lori
Hollander. She works with people of all different levels in her
classes. You design a project and she will give you the technical
and moral support an aspiring designer/artist needs. Under her
wonderful guidance I was able to actually launch a side line
career as a jewelry designer and some of my stuff is sold
throughout NYC.

I sorry for the long rant but whenever I hear FIT I get
unnerved!!! I don’t think the jewerly department is supportive of
aspiring jewerlers. If anything, the go out of there way to
discourage students…But since you reccomended Chei I am going
to call the school and find out a little about his class and try
to actually meet him. I am sure if you had a good experience he
is probably okay. Just so you know, I have meet other jewelry
designers who share my feeling about the Jewerly Department at
FIT

DeDe
<-- end of posting -->


#7

Don’t worry, I feel the same way you do about FIT, however being
a grad, I have to be positive about it. Chie is an exception to
the FIT list of instructors. I feel anyway. Tony can/is very hard
on students, I think he thinks he needs to be that way because of
his jewelry instructions in Germany. I don’t pay too much
attention to the instructor’s opinions there, just like ganoksin,
I take what I can use and leave the rest. I only hope that Chie
Tertani’s outlook will remain postive for a couple of years,
before the old FIT teachers blues set in. I was offered a
position teaching wax carving there, to take Arthur Angelino’s
place, the other wax teacher, but since he is still there, and he
is a friend of mine I felt I would be stabbing him in the back.

Tim


#8

The Maryland Institute, College of Art Jewelry Center in
Baltimore is offering a wax/casting class. It is administered
through the Office of Continuing Studies and will begin in
September. They can be reached for a catalog and/or
registration at (410) 225-2217. The class is taught by Shana
Kroiz, who is also the Director of the Jewelry Center. She also
teaches classes at the 92nd Street Y in New York City. I don’t
know if she’s teaching the wax class at the Y this fall. You
can call the Center directly at (410) 235-5871 for more
on the entire jewelry program. They are also
featured on the Maryland Institute website at www.mica.edu.

The Jewelry Center was featured in an article in last month's

Lapidary Journal.

Deb Lally
@dlally
<-- end of posting -->


#9

Jill,

Thanks for the advice!! I really really appreciate it.

DeDe!!!


#10

I read that article too. It made we wish I lived closed to
Baltimore!!!

DeDe


#11

Dear Tim:

Sorry for the rant on FIT. I know there are always great
talented people in the worst of places…I am going to check out
Chie’s class hopefully this fall if it is offered.

DeDe


#12

If you are making multiple copies, you are better off continuing
to do it this way. The mold maker can make a mold directly from
your silver model, whereas if you made a wax model, it would have
to be cast in silver and then the mold is made. This also means
an additional shrinkage from your original piece (2 processes = 2
shrinkages, rather than one). I usually use white metal models
when I make multiples (like Rick, I also worked in the R.I.
jewelry industry) and for one of a kind pieces I use wax.
snip

I would also suggest that you CAN make a piece in wax (or most
ANYTHING else) and make a production mold from it and retain the
original wax or what ever if you would use one of the numeroud
RTV (Room Temperature Vulcanizing) rubbers that are now
available. We have heat vulcanizing equipment and rubbers (both
silicon ((less shrink if you can control the temperature
closely)) and the regular rubbers) but we use RTV materials
exclusively for our molds (occasionally I will make a vulcanized
mold for a person who ““demands”” it). The RTV’s do not require
a vulcanizer, have basically NO SHRINK, last as long or longer
than the vulcanized, some silicons can take direct casting in
pewter, right into the mold, they are easy to make, fast, most
all are self releasing, molds can be made directly from a wax or
most any other material, and on and on and on. I cannot figure
out wha there is such aversion within the industry to using
these products instead of the heat vulcanizing materials. Is it
just old habits die hard or what? I really am curious…

John and Cynthia/MidLife Crisis Enterprises
Maiden Metals/C. T. Designs/ Bloomin’ Wax Works. etc. No one is
guaranteed happiness. Life just

PO BX 44, Philo, Ca 95466
gives each person time and space. It is
Ph 707-895-2635 FAX 707-895-9332 up to us to
fill it with joy.


#13

Dede,

I’m interested in your success withmaking molds… thinking of
doing the folowing as a process;

  •   cast a metal(very very detailed, 4 " x 12", with cut ins
    

and outs, over lays… ) with a rubber mold…

but with all the ins and out folds … willthe rubber or latex
do the job…

THEN WHAT… CAN’T POOR SILVER INTO A RUBBER MOLD??

Jim


#14

I’m interested in your success withmaking molds… thinking of
doing the folowing as a process;

  •   cast a metal(very very detailed, 4 " x 12", with cut ins
    

and outs, over lays… ) with a rubber mold…
but with all the ins and out folds … willthe rubber or latex
do the job…
THEN WHAT… CAN’T POOR SILVER INTO A RUBBER MOLD??

Dear Jim:

When I want to cast something I first make the piece myself out
of silver(this is a great way to work because the original design
always evolves into something a little different and better)
Then I bring the piece to the caster and he makes a rubber mold
and casts the piece. I never considered doing the casting myself
because I don’t have the time or money to invest in additional
equipment and stuff. I consult with my caster too with any
questions I may have. Just keep in mind that pieces you make
from the mold will be upto 10% smaller/thinner. Also, when you
are making three dimensional piece keep thickness in mind so your
"copies" will not crush easily…I think everybody’s favorite
book “The Complete MetalSmith” has a chapter that tells you how
to make a ,mold out of your charcoal and tells you how to melt
the silver to make a piece if you are determined to do everything
yourself. In regard to detailed pieces, I have made some pretty
intricate stuff and the copies I made from the rubber molds were
great ( I mean every once in while you get a bum piece made from
your mold- it happens…) Your piece sounds pretty big - sounds
EXPENSIVE to cast…

DeDe


#15
 Just keep in mind that pieces you make from the mold will be
upto 10% smaller/thinner.

If you ask your caster to use “no shrink pink” mold rubber there
should be no reduction from the original.

                     ...Darryl

#16

fter taking a casting class I realized that the set-up, space
needs and cost were too much for me to handle, so I have been
making wax models and have them cast by a professional casting
house here in NYC. The man who does my work is very good and
constantly confers with me. My pieces are fairly large(often 3
to four inches) and very complex, and the only problem I’m having
is that I can’t get them to be as fine as I would like. If I
use anything less than 20 ga. wax as a base for the more complex
design, (I build rather than carve) then they don’t hold up in
the casting process. They also get quite heavy. Am I missing
something? Is there a way to produce lighter, thinner castings
without sacrificing size and complexity. I’m getting really
discouraged about this, so am really looking forward to an
answer. Sandra/ElegantBee


#17

Sandra it sounds to me like you should consider designs that
have a “front” and “back” so you can hollow out the back side to
reduce weight. Keep in mind that if your pieces are of varying
size throughout, you will need to sprue to each of the heavy
sections for a successful casting. Good luck, Mike


#18
My pieces are fairly large(often 3 to four inches) and very
complex, and the only problem I'm having is that I can't get
them to be as fine as I would like.  If I use anything less
than 20 ga. wax as a base for the more complex design, (I build
rather than carve) then they don't hold up in the casting
process. 

Sandra, Is the person that is casting your pieces using multiple
sprues on the item? Multiple sprue gates will help on the metal
flow. What method is used for casting? (centrifugal or vacuum?)
Centrifugal usually will fill in finer areas better than vacuum.
May want to try casting at a slightly higher flask temp too. This
should allow you to cast a thinner model. Good luck! Ken


#19

If you ask your caster to use “no shrink pink” mold rubber there
should be no reduction from the original.

True to a point. There is the shrink of the wax and the shrink
of the metal. The use of a “0” shrink mold material will
eliminate the mold shrink but not the other 2 factors. Cooler
wax when injecting will help a bit in the wax but temp control is
an absolute necessity to get good injections. Close tollerances
on the casting metal temperature can help on the metal shrink a
bit but it cannot be eliminated totally.

John and Cynthia/MidLife Crisis Enterprises
Maiden Metals/C. T. Designs/ Bloomin’ Wax Works. etc. No one is
guaranteed happiness. Life just

PO BX 44, Philo, Ca 95466
gives each person time and space. It is
Ph 707-895-2635 FAX 707-895-9332 up to us to
fill it with joy.


#20

Major undercuts can be delt with with many of the RTV’s. If the
design of the piece (and thus the rubber mold) can take it, many
of the RTV’s can be softened to allow of easier removal of a wax
from the mold but keep in mind that a soft mold must be made so
the soft pieces of the mold will allign properly when putting to
mold together and will stay in place when the wax is being
injected. Large flat pieces are always a problem in casting, to
get the metal to flow and fill, warpage, etc. Seeing the piece
is always a help as thin for noe person is really thick for
another.

Another of my 2 cents workt (brother is inflation at work
here!!!).

John and Cynthia/MidLife Crisis Enterprises
Maiden Metals/C. T. Designs/ Bloomin’ Wax Works. etc. No one is
guaranteed happiness. Life just

PO BX 44, Philo, Ca 95466
gives each person time and space. It is
Ph 707-895-2635 FAX 707-895-9332 up to us to
fill it with joy.