Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Experimenting with molding metal clay

Present I made for my mom ;)

  • The original photo used for the model of the fire ants is by Bart Drees, from here.
  • CNC machine is a Probotix Fireball V90, using a 60 degree .005 etching tip on a Dewalt trim router.
  • The wax is a block of machinable wax from Flexbar.
  • For that one, just used double-sided Scotch tape for hold down for the wax to leveled plywood surface.  Still need to lay out a better clamping system, but that's worked really well for wax and circuit boards for me so far.
  • The silver clay is ArtClay Silver 650.
  • The oil used was a knife sharpening oil.  Olive oil would probably work as well or better.
  • Gemstone is a synthetic corundum (don't torch-fire a natural like that!).
  • Pearls are cultured freshwater.
  • Garnets are probably natural, although I'm not 100% sure on that source.
  • All other silver is sterling.
  • No solder or bezel other than metal clay was used.
  • Tried out CamBam for the image->g-code.  Plan to buy it soon - neat stuff, although still in the learning curve on what it can do and how.
  • Used Mach3 for the milling control software.


Bill said...


m.e. said...

Thanks! Playing with the techniques, still collecting the equipment for doing it "right". Adding a pic of the final necklace.