Casting Process - Daniel J. Cline Sculpture

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Casting Process


The process for producing a bronze sculpture is a time consuming and expensive endeavor. It requires many hours of labour to produce a finished piece. Here is a simplified rundown of the basic steps involved.

First, an original sculpture is produced in any number of materials, stone, wood, clay. etc.

Next a mold is made from the original. This requires the use expensive casting rubber, fiberglass shell, etc.

Once a mold is ready, melted wax is poured into the mold, building up the thickness. Let cool...Clean up seams and inperfections. Now it needs to be prepare for the foundry.

First, additional pieces of red wax (Sprues) are attached to the wax version of the original to make the passages for bronze to flow in and the gases to escape.

Once the spuing is done, the wax is (invested), covered with coats of fine sand and ceramic, dryed inbetween and repeated numerous times until a proper thickness is developed.

The invested wax is burned out in a special kiln that "burns out" the wax and hardens the ceramic.

Molten bronze heated to 2100 degrees is poured into void left by the wax, then allowed to cool.

The ceramic investment is chipped off reveiling a bronze version of the original.

All the spues are cut off, the pieces welded together and seams and imperfections removed and repaired (chasing).

Finally, the bronze is coloured (patina) and sealed.

This is a short explanation of the numerous steps and operations involved in producing a finished bronze from an original sculpture.

Below is my first bronze sculpture. "Octopus Progress" limited edition of 19.

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