Casting silver jewelry...a detailed rubber chicken pendant!


#1

Hey guys, I printed and cast these little rubber chickens to make pendants for a friend’s glass studio, and something amazing happened. Keep in mind that they are about 1-1/4" long, so pretty small.

It wasn’t until my friend posted a photo on Facebook of the chicken I gave him, and I realized that the Form 2 had printed detail that I couldn’t see with the naked eye! I had given the chicken a textured skin, and even a tongue and a uvula (that thing hanging down in the back of your throat). Those details showed up! He was designed in ZBrush (the full version, but it could also be done in ZBrush Core).

By the way, I’ve found that raised designs like the logo work best when they are at least 0.3-0.4mm raised off the surface.

I also printed a larger one that maxed out the size on my Formlabs…I found “slush rubber” online and will use the model to make a mold that I can cast an actual rubber chicken!

Oh Form 2, where have you been all my life?


(For anyone interested in the details…this was cast with BlueCast in open mode on Gray V2 settings at 0.50 microns, although I also use the Formlabs Castable V2 resin. It was cast on a Kaya Cast vacuum setup with Plasticast without Bandust (Formlabs recommends with Bandust, so mine is different), ramped as normal with max temperature 1375°F for three hours, final temp 975°F, metal temperature 1855°F in a Kerr ElectroMelt crucible. The burnout is about 12 hours, but I’ll be making an RTV mold out of the Formlabs Castable V2 model and using wax for the rest).


#2

Here is what the tree looked like…I’m finding that some of my earlier issues related to incomplete burnout and possibly residual ash, but more importantly improper sprue placement, sprues that were too large, or even too many sprues. I sprued each chicken with a 3mm single sprue to the heaviest part of the model, on the back. I added the sprues directly to the ZBrush model, which made treeing super fast and easy.

It’s also worth noting that this layout of chickens straight out from the trunk was recommended because I’m using a perforated flask that pulls out toward the sides. If you were using a solid cylinder, they would be angled up. I recently took a class with a traditional wax carving master, Kate Wolf, and she gave a lot of good troubleshooting information with regards to spruing. She makes “wicked sharp” wax carving tools for hard wax and some touch-up waxes that work GREAT with resins for cleanup or adding wax to printed designs.

Here’s a picture.


#3

Those sre so awesome! Wish I had seen them before!