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11 May 2024

Wax resin molds

 

 

Wax Molds for Resin! You Have to See This

Hi everyone, welcome back to my videos! After a brief hiatus, I'm excited to be back with some fresh content. This time, I’ll be showing you a fascinating technique that I recently discovered and tried out—using wax molds for resin casting.

Introduction

I was completely blown away when I had this idea and actually put it into practice. It all started with melting down some wax. This isn't just any wax; it's wax I've previously used, which has resin mixed into it. I’m pouring it back into a mold to remove the majority of impurities. These impurities are mainly resin bits from previous uses. You'll notice little round or cylindrical nuggets in the wax, which I made to use as dividers or to prop pieces up on a resin surface.

The Process

Preparing the Wax

First, I melted the wax down. It's crucial to let the wax cool a bit before pouring it. At around 80°C, it’s still too hot and can affect the surface you pour it onto, especially if it's thin plastic. For my initial attempt, I’m going to pour directly onto a plastic tray. In the past, I've used baking paper or cellophane, but each has its drawbacks.

  • Cellophane: It creates a rippled effect, great for ocean coasters but not ideal for my current needs.
  • Baking Paper: While it resists the wax well, if the wax shifts, you lose surface contact, causing the resin to spill everywhere.

 

Pouring the Wax

I decided to try pouring directly onto the plastic. From previous tests, I know the wax will peel off like resin usually does on plastic, though it might turn cloudy. For my purposes, it doesn't need to be crystal clear. After pouring, I let it cool further until it reaches around 50°C and starts forming a film on top.

Shaping the Wax

Once the wax has cooled to about 30°C, it's ready for shaping. For today's demonstration, I used two methods:1. **Pressing a Shape:** I pressed a shape onto the wax, cut around it, and lifted it out. If the wax is at the right temperature, it should lift out smoothly.2. **Using a Pre-Made Mold:** I pressed a previously made mould with a smooth surface into the wax to see what kind of shape it would create.

Tips and Tricks

While waiting for the wax to set (still around 50-53°C), I decided to share some tips. When buying wax, compare the cost-effectiveness of different options. For instance, I found that two packs of smaller wax pieces on special offer were a better deal than the biggest candle available. The wax from these smaller pieces melted nicely and created a crisp finish, which is what we need for resin casting.

Conclusion

This technique of using wax molds for resin casting opens up a wide variety of possibilities. It's a straightforward process but requires attention to detail, especially with temperature management. In the next part, I'll show you more about how to refine this method and the different uses it can have.

 

PART TWO

Preparing the Resin

To start, my wax is now fully set, so I’m ready to mix up some resin. I’m using a 2:1 ratio, and I prefer to measure it out on my trusty scales.

 

  • Resin Tip - I cover the digital pad of the scales with cellophane. This makes cleanup a breeze because I can just peel off the dirty layer and have a clean surface again.

 

For this project, I’ll need about 200 grams of resin. If I were pouring onto a piece of artwork, I’d heat the resin in the microwave for about five seconds. It’s colder here in New Zealand, around 20°C, so a little warmth helps. I’ve just heated the resin, and now I’m measuring out 140 grams of resin and 70 grams of hardener.

Mixing the Resin

I like to mix the resin with my hands, making sure to scrape down the sides of the container. This ensures that both the hardener and resin are thoroughly combined. Although it creates bubbles, I’m not too worried—they usually come out in the end. I let the resin sit for about ten minutes. This allows it to thicken slightly, which helps prevent it from seeping into unwanted areas.

 Preparing the Wax Molds

One of the wax molds came loose from the plastic, so I tried to reattach it by melting the wax. This was tricky because I didn’t want to warp the tray. However, the wax fused nicely, and I’m hoping it holds when I pour the resin.

Now, it’s time to pour the resin. I don’t want to move the molds afterward, so I’ve set everything up in frame. As expected, the resin created a slightly lumpy surface on the bottom, but that’s okay for this experiment. I realized I forgot to add color, but I’ll remember next time.

After about six hours, the resin has set. One mold leaked a bit, but it’s not too bad. With a bit of sanding, it’ll be perfect. The resin did seep out in some areas, but it’s easy to trim off since it’s paper-thin. I’m really happy with how the indents turned out—they look pretty cool.

Final Thoughts

Through trial and error, I’ve learned that pushing the cloth around the outside of the resin helps soak up any excess on the wax. This makes cleanup much easier. Although some parts broke because I didn’t pour deep enough, I’m overall pleased with the results. With practice, I’m sure I’ll get everything perfect.

 

 

 

 

Wax mold one

Wax mold two

Donna O'Donoghue

 ART