Lost wax casting - at the casters

I'm lucky to live a short distance to Manhattan and the Diamond District, so there are a few casters to choose from. I use Taba Casting, they're friendly, have competitive prices and I like the metal they use. They use metal from United Precious Metal Refining, which are environmentally responsible, they use recycled fine silver and are of great quality.

Taba Casting

This is the process of wax casting that I was taught at a class, but mot likely it is a different process at Taba. But since I know this way, this is what I'll describe; it's called centrifugal casting.

A wax sprue is added to the piece and together with other pieces being cast in the same metal, a 'tree' is formed.

A metal flask is placed over the tree and a plaster of Paris type material called investment is poured into the flask.
Once dry, the wax is melted out, leaving a cavity that looks like the pieces in the tree.

Flask and tree

The metal needs to be hot enough to be in liquid forms so that it can be centrifugally thrown towards the inside mold wall, where it solidifies after cooling.

Molten Metal

Centrifugal casting machine

When the pieces are cool, the plaster of Paris is washed off the tree to leave the metal pieces.

Metal Tree

The sprues are the cut off and the piece is ready for the customer to pick up.

Here's the ring that I picked up in it's raw state with the sprue.

Ring

If you were to bring in a piece that was already made (either a 3D printed design that was printed in plastic or another material, or piece you already created in metal that you want more of), they would add a sprue and make a silicone mold from it.

Silicone mold

This is then used to create wax pieces, by pouring molten wax in the molds, you can easily get multiples of one piece this way. Once you have the wax pieces, they are added to the 'tree' and you go back to where you were above.

Here are some wax pieces straight from molds before being put on the tree.

Wax casts

It's a great way of being able to make multiple pieces of the same thing again and again.

Next up is how I finish my pieces after I pick them up from Taba.

As usual, if you have any questions or comments, please add them below! 👇🏻

Thanks for reading and see you again soon!
Joanne

Part One: Lost wax casting - creating the piece

Part Three: Lost wax casting - finishing the piece


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