Eagle Statue - Zapins

Discussion in 'Lost wax casting' started by Zapins, Dec 10, 2017.

  1. Zapins

    Zapins Silver

    I decided to make an eagle last year late august. Originally it was just going to be an eagle head fo a walking cane, but then I made the head too big and decided to make a body for the head. So this project sort of morphed out of nowhere into a pretty elaborate project that will require multipart silicone rubber molds and hollow casting using lost wax. This thread is a copy of all my photos, I will update this thread going forwards. The original thread is here: http://www.alloyavenue.com/vb/showthread.php?12418-Eagle-Statue&highlight=eagle



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    I finished the general details on the left side of the head. Some ruffled feathers.

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    Last edited: Dec 10, 2017
    Jason, OCD and Tobho Mott like this.
  2. Zapins

    Zapins Silver

    This is the wax I am using
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    I was experimenting with body shapes for the bird here, ultimately decided to go with a sitting quizzical pose rather than the overdone swooping down killing things pose.

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    I'm trying to show things sequentially and from the same angle each time to give you an idea of how I'm doing it.

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    I got some legs on it today.
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    I think I'm going to angle the head so it looks down more. It is currently looking way too far up which I think is an unnatural position for their heads to be in. They never look up at you, they always look down on you. That position will work better if I mount it high up near the ceiling inside our house. So it peers at you out of reach like the little sky-cat that it is.

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    New head position. Moved it more forwards and more tilted to the side (the photo on the right). What do you think? A smidge better? I also slimmed down the neck. I need to do a lot of detail work now but the body and proportions are basically correct.

    Before : After
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    Far right picture has the most up to date bird.

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    Almost done with one wing. Got a bit of blending to do around the head/wing junction and then add some detail to the long feathers, then its on to the 2nd wing, stomach and feet. Progress is pretty slow. I get about a 2x2" patch done over the course of about 2 hours.
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    Last edited: Dec 10, 2017
  3. Zapins

    Zapins Silver

    I finished the left wing today. Now I just need to do the neck feathers, carve the feet, add some long tail feathers and go over it to remove burs and blemishes, also add a few details to the head. Oh and of course pick a stick for it to perch on.

    Here's what I've got so far:


    I managed to turn one of the toes into a proper finished looking claw. Keep in mind I made most of the finer scales and dimples on the pads of the toe with the new tool. Now I just need to replicate the toe 7 more times... Ugh.

    I'll fixthe toes to the branch in the right position... whenever I am able to find a nice looking branch, or make one.

    [​IMG]Eagle claw in wax by Zapins, on Flickr

    It took me about 55 mins in real life to make 1 claw.



    Here is a video I put together showing how to make wax square rod which I used as a frame for the head, how to join wax together and how to flame polish. The benzomatic gas solderer is fantastic and well worth the $20 it costs. Probably one of the most useful wax working tools I have.


    I also made a lot of wax rods and sheets so I can quickly start adding features.
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    Here is a little "how to" video on making wax sheets. I figured talking detracted from my previous instructional videos so I didn't say anything in those, but I suppose black and white silent films went out of style for a reason so talk this time I did.
     
    Last edited: Dec 10, 2017
    Jimmy Cogg, Jammer and Jason like this.
  4. Jammer

    Jammer Silver Banner Member

    _Jason likes this.
  5. Peedee

    Peedee Silver

    It's a CHICKEN!!!! ;)
     
  6. Zapins

    Zapins Silver

  7. Jason

    Jason Gold Banner Member

    Nahh... he looks good. Eagles don't look at you, they look through you.
     
  8. Tobho Mott

    Tobho Mott Silver Banner Member

    Looks great to me!

    Jeff
     
  9. PatJ

    PatJ Silver Banner Member

    Seems like that would take some serious patience to get all that wax molded into some sort of shape, much less all the tiny detail work.
    Very impressive.
     
  10. Zapins

    Zapins Silver

    Thanks. Yes it takes a long time. Slow work, but satisfying to use my hands while I'm wasting time watching youtube.

    A few more days of tidying it and it will be time to mold.

    Working on my crucible lifting tongs for the big crucible so I can pour. Also got 2 ingots of bronze delivered (but one fell out during shipping, so usps insurance will replace it I think). Luckily I have enough bronze to cast anyway.

    Jason what we're your bronze welding settings? I bought some bronze rod and I want to practice tig ing it.
     
  11. Jason

    Jason Gold Banner Member

    DC-EN and around 125amps. Use the foot pedal brother, (to me) it's not like welding steel or aluminum AT ALL! I've literally begged all the heavy hitters on youtube for a lesson on welding CAST sil-bronze and all I get is adding pretty crap to steel. So I am the last person to give advice on welding sil bronze. I'm able to make it work using a 3/32" tungsten and some 1/16" sil bronze rod. Hard to explain, but I get it hot and the area starts to puff up as I add the bronze. I keep adding filler with the plan on grinding back the weld. With those cheapy bits I bought on fleabay, it shapes pretty easy. Thank god suspendaslurry hasn't let me done with big stupid nasty areas to fix. I've played with tigging some of my sprues together. They are 3/8" thick and can REALLY suck up the heat. One thing I have noticed with bronze, if the area is thin, the possibility of a "cave in" is possible, you have to be careful and watch how much heat you use with the torch as it can happen pretty quick. Keeping your wax at the molding stage fairly consistent in thickness will make it easier when you have to weld on it. (as in your birds chest)
    As a side note, I can lay little beads on sil bronze if I am welding extruded bronze plate. Cast is a different animal to me. Hard to explain, wish I had a little formal training on this one.
     
  12. Zapins

    Zapins Silver

    Thanks Jason, I'll give those settings a try at some point. I have a good bit of experience with oxy/acet welding bronze which seems to act just like you describe with the tig welder so I am sure it will be fairly similar when I get to practicing. I just ran out of O/A gas so I'll have to go take out a small fortune loan to get the tanks refilled (and no doubt re-water tested because I haven't swapped them out in 5+ years). Ugh. On the bright side I found 3x 20 pound CO2 tanks in my basement that I can use for a future MIG welder. Maybe next time I'm home in a year's time I'll buy one.

    I finished up the eyes & checks. Going to fix the top of the head and under the chin, touching up the beak too. Then its off to finishing its feet, and tail. Then a once over to tidy it up from all the little wax snotties and then molding time. Maybe another 2-3 days of hard work and it will be on to the silicone rubber & fiberglass.

    I think I'm going to have to cut the legs off and mold the feet perched onto the stick in a separate 2-3 part mold, and the body in a 2-3 part mold (probably 2 parts). I think that will let me get all the details I need and then I can piece it all together after.

    [​IMG]Wax eagle before being cast into bronze by Zapins, on Flickr

    [​IMG]Wax eagle before being cast into bronze by Zapins, on Flickr
     
  13. Jason

    Jason Gold Banner Member

    He's looking good. The worst part of molding the feet will be reattaching them to the poured wax bird before shell. Better to reattach in wax instead of in bronze!:eek::eek::eek:

    Hey.. did you shoot any video of you working on this birds face?
     
  14. Zapins

    Zapins Silver

    No video. Maybe I should have.

    I need to figure out a proper filming setup. Also a good way to make the videos. I feel like they can be a bit boring just watching someone work in silence.

    I think you are right about removing the feet.

    Might be easier to mold the toes individually in block molds then reattach them to the statue each time I make a copy which probably won't be too many copies.

    I can then 2 part mold the bird and 2 part mold the wood. So there will be many molds for the claws, body and branch.

    Might be the easiest way to make it?
     
  15. Jason

    Jason Gold Banner Member

    I would... it will simplify an already tricky mold job.

    Point the camera at what you're doing and just let it roll. After you import it, start screwing with it. I just rewatched that anchor video I did. With some snazzy tunes, even boring bronze chasing with a dremel looks cool when done at 10x normal speed. Set the final length to the length of a song or two. To you its boring, to us its a learning experience. I fly all the time and no i dont record what I do. I find it old hat, but to a new passenger, they flip out when we break out just a couple hundred feet off the ground in crappy weather. The real reason I don't record is, it's called evidence.. lol
     
  16. Zapins

    Zapins Silver

    Yeah haha. Makes sense with filming in the plane. Maybe you're right.

    What sound bank do you use? I was browsing around but didn't really find a good site for free sounds, or paid sounds to spruce up the vids.

    Yeah I think I'll do it in several pieces. As much as it sucks putting together many parts it is probably better than killing myself putting together a 40 part multiple piece rubber mold.

    Also, what the hell man do you sleep? Its 4 am!
     
  17. Jason

    Jason Gold Banner Member

    YouTube search NCS.. stand for no copyright sounds. Another good one I just found is ccmixter or sound cloud is another. Recently I used an urban explorer's music. This guy makes his own music in the UK and he's all too happy for free exposure. Link found in that anchor videos description. I download ncs videos then open them with shotcut and cut and trim the sound clips I want, re saving them as usuable individual mp3 files. Simple to add audio to videos from that point. I love how shotcut allows you to manipulate the audio and video tracks 9 ways from Sunday. Makes a hack video editor like me look like he might actually know what he's doing.

    Sleep? I sleep when I'm tired. I don't have a schedule so I have to stay fluid. I ran freight for years so almost 40% of my logbook is night flying! People that have seen that ask if I'm afraid of daylight? Maybe... :-/
     
  18. Zapins

    Zapins Silver

    More pics of the chicken. I got the tail done and finished up all 8 claws (no claw pics). Next will be the head, then general cleaning and detailing the feathers. Hoping to start molding in a day or two. Hoping the molding process will capture all the tiny fine details like the irises and beak lines. Not sure if there is a spray or something to help clean and lower the surface tension so the wax gets in everywhere?

    [​IMG]Added a tail to the wax eagle by Zapins, on Flickr

    [​IMG]Added a tail to the wax eagle by Zapins, on Flickr

    [​IMG]Added a tail to the wax eagle by Zapins, on Flickr

    [​IMG]Added a tail to the wax eagle by Zapins, on Flickr

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    Jason likes this.
  19. Zapins

    Zapins Silver

    Finished it... finally!

    Now I will attempt to mold the damn thing. Probably tomorrow because I'm beat. Spent at least 20-30 hours this week fixing it. I wonder how many hours total I've invested in crafting it? 100+ for sure, maybe 200?

    [​IMG]20171229_221751-1 by Zapins, on Flickr

    [​IMG]20171229_221815-1 by Zapins, on Flickr
    [​IMG]20171229_221759 by Zapins, on Flickr


    [​IMG]20171229_221714-1 by Zapins, on Flickr

    [​IMG]20171229_221708 by Zapins, on Flickr

    [​IMG]20171229_221729-1 by Zapins, on Flickr

    [​IMG]20171229_221834 by Zapins, on Flickr

    [​IMG]20171229_221840 by Zapins, on Flickr
     
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2017
    Red97 and Al2O3 like this.
  20. Al2O3

    Al2O3 Administrator Staff Member Banner Member

    Congrats Zap. That's quite the accomplishment in wax. Looking forward to your molding it. Do you ever work in clay?

    Best,
    Kelly
     

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