Molds for metal sculpture


#1

I am considering purchasing a Form 3L when available. My goal is to create a printed mold that can be used for casting a metal sculpture. I use Rhino and Grasshopper to create the print. I’m looking at SLA technology due to the smooth finish, but am concerned about the Form 3L due to some of the issues that have cropped up on this forum with the Form 3. There is a local foundry that can take the print, create the mold, and do the casting. I have a few questions since I am new to this although I have done some glass casting in the past. Has anyone else gone down this path of creating metal sculptures from a 3D print? Does Formlabs have a good resin that will work well with this process? Is the Form 3L the appropriate machine to used for this? Any tips or advice will be greatly appreciated!


#2

It works okay for metal- but the foundry really has to have experience with burning out the print properly.

However- I would point out that printing patterns for casting is fine for one off or very short runs… but its cost and time prohibitive if you intend to cast the same item in multiples.

In such situations I do not use the Form 2 to print a burnable pattern I use it to product a production Mold system that will allow me to finish the surface of the pattern and pour silicone molds that can produce hundreds of wax castings.


#3

Thanks - this is helpful. I was also wondering how much post production work is required on the final product. With glass casting this was the most labor intensive part of creating a finished piece. Sanding and polishing took an extensive amount of time.
Scott


#4

Sorry, I forgot to ask: What is a Mold System?