Hot Metal: Sand Casting

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How To's

How To Dress Aluminum

Mo'. I want mo!

Where To Get More Information


When What Host Where Theme Notes
Pour Aluminum John Sechrest

Photo Gallery

Mixing the sand Mixing the sand. A small amount of clay and water are added to the sand to make it stick together well. patterns The drag receives sand and the patterns. The sand is rammed hard around the forms. You then add a mold release. This is done by shaking a porous sock or bag full of cornstarch over the mold to dust it. You can then place the cope over the drag and fill it the rest of the way with sand. But before you do, insert the breathing tubes.
gates and risers The cope has tubes inserted at the gates where the aluminum will be poured in, and risers where the air will vent. Lifting the cope Ken and John carefully separate the cope and drag so as not to disturb the sand. We then remove the patterns.
patterns Pulling the patterns out of the sand. This must be done carefully to avoid messing up the fine finish of the sand. Cut sprews They cut the grooves for sprews into the sand
crucible Lets melt some aluminum. Altho far from ideal metalurgically, steel crucibles are very cheap to make. We weld them from square steel tubing. Melting aluminum with charcoal There is a problem using charcoal in a furnace. It produces lots of sparks, which are a fire hazard and get in our hair. For this reason we later convered to using propane.
charcoal furnace We force air into the charcoal furnace with a hair dryer. After its been burning for awhile it produces fewer sparks. check temperature Dave checks the melt temperature by dipping in a block of aluminum
Pour crucible John pours the melt sand casting is full The sand casting is filled completely with aluminum
lift the cope We lift the cope to reveal the casting results After knocking all the sand away we can see the results of the casting
sprews John saws the sprews off of the castings Fun things Fun things to do with castings
prop Here is another casting project. Shown are the cope and drag with the original prop in the sand. The cope and drag are home made, specifically for this purpose. prop The prop is cast in aluminum. This will be used to propel my Kinetic Sculpture Racer in the water.

Eugene Model Show

In 2003 I went to a model show in Eugene Oregon. The next pictures are from that event. Filling the drag In these two pictures this woman is giving a demonstration of sand casting. She first gets the drag ready for the pattern. Carving out the drag
Finishing the cope Here she is finishing up by tamping down the last bit of sand into the cope. Removing the crucible from the furnace She lifts the top half of the furnace and then remove the crucible. Next she pours the melt into the sand casts.
Pouring the melt These two pictures are of a sand muller. It essentially grinds the sand, breaking apart the clumps and making it usable much longer. Muller Muller
Lets take some better looks at that split furnace. Furnace Furnace Furnace

Last modified 25 Apr 2008