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Page name: One Part Silicone Molds [Logged in view] [RSS]
2007-01-02 20:43:25
Last author: Hedda
Owner: smakeupfx
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Hi all, [smakeupfx] here,

Since several people have shown interest in making silicone molds, I put together this little tutorial. I'm using the 12" figure I just finished for the HBO series The Entourage. The sculpt had to be cast in a few different ridged materials so silicone was the best choice for the molds. Nothing sticks to silicone, you can cast plaster, chocolate, resin, cement, epoxy... even silicone but you'll need to use a release agent for that since silicone will stick only to silicone. You can heat the molds too and some kinds can be used to cook in (check instructions as to the temperature limits of the particular kind of silicone you use).

<img:stuff/tutorial-1.jpg>

1: This job went through a lot of design changes. The tall figure is what they wanted at the start but as the script changed they asked for one only 5 inches high. I used the same steps to cast the small figure. The large Mongol was sculpted in Roma Plastilina clay... an oil/sulfur based non-hardening clay that is well suited for this kind of work. It's not rubbery, seams together better than any other clay I've used and comes in four different grades of hardness.  His armature is aluminum wire with 20 minute epoxy putty over it and cooked at low temperature to de-gas it as much as possible.  The clay sticks much better to epoxy than the bare wire and it gives you a solid surface to sculpt on. The smaller figure is on the same type of armature but because of the small size I used Super Sculpy instead of an oil based clay.  It's a bit rubbery and doesn't seam very well but it can be cured, added too and cured again so I could harden finished sections as I went along and not accidentally smear them.

2: The first thing to do is plan the best way to minimize problems when pouring your cast.  You have to imagine the sculpt encased in silicone, where will you pour the casting material in? how will the air escape? how will you cut the mold apart?  In this case, the figure would be in the mold upside down, pouring the casting material into the bottom. I was worried that I would get bubbles under his chin and in his arms. It would be likely I would never get a decent cast of his hands, or even his arms the way they would be situated. So to fix that, the sculpt is cut into parts, molded separately and once cast, reassembled. In this picture I'm cutting off his head with a knife.  I only had one small armature wire inside and I cut that with wire cutters once the clay was sliced.

3: Once the head is removed, I put it back on gently and touch up the edges of both sides so the casts will line up perfectly.

4: With the arms, I had to cut thru a thick armature of wire and epoxy so first I wrapped the rest of the sculpt in plastic to protect it from dust. Then I made a center cut all around the clay down to the armature. I also made cuts above and below so i could carefully peel back the clay to save it to replace after the arm was separated.

5: Cutting through the armature.

6: The clay strips are put back on and smoothed. Just like the head was done, you need to hold the pieces together and work the seam until they fit perfectly together.

<img:stuff/tutorial-2.jpg>

7: The arms and head are now removed and the seams are clean.

8: I sprayed the body with Krylon Crystal Acrylic spray to seal it (otherwise, the sulfur in the clay can effect the cure of the silicone).  Next I made a box from a sheet of Foam Core to fit around the body leaving at least 1/2 inch (1.5cm) of space around it.  (cardboard or plastic sheeting would would fine as well as FoamCore)

9: Make sure ALL the seams are sealed. Silicone will leak out of any little crack or hole, so I often will hot glue everything together and keep a ball of clay at hand and some tape to block up any leaks. 

10: I inserted a tube into the head and dripped some hot glue down inside so it would stick to the bit of armature wire inside.  Just like the body, I'm going to pour material into the mold from the bottom. The tube will leave a pour hole (I will cut the hole bigger after the silicone is cured so it's easier to pour).  For the walls, I rolled a piece of styrene plastic into a tube, still leaving 1/5" between the clay and the wall.

11: This is hot glued down as well.

12: The arms have a tube glued to the joint too and that is hot glued down to a base.

<img:stuff/tutorial-3.jpg>

13: I made foam core boxes around the arms too and hot glued the seams.

14: All the pieces of the sculpt are now ready to mold. The torso, both arms and the head.  Mix your silicone as per the instructions and slowly pour it into the boxes. I like to pour next to the edge not over the clay.. this way the level slowly rises and cuts down on any bubbles. 

15: Once the silicone is cured (depends on what kind you are using) peal the foam core off and carefully cut the molds into.  This is tricky, you don't want to leave any hanging bits, so cut it as clean as you can. I don't cut all the way thru either... leave the bottom together if you can so it will keep the two halves aligned and also cut down on leaks.  I like to cut the opening where I'm going to pour the casting material into a funnel like shape but be careful not to cut where the clay was... just open it up a bit around where the rod was.

Once you have washed and dried the molds they are ready to pour. Molds this size don't really need Mother Molds.. that is a stiff mold around the silicone to help it keep it's shape when material is poured into it.  If you think it will bow out or bend too much under the pressures of casting, make a mold around the silicone before you cut the sculpt out. I often use plaster bandage for this (any medical supply store will carry it).  I made seven cement casts and one resin cast from these molds. I cleaned the casts and glued them back together with super glue or five minute epoxy. I used Krylon grey primer paint and then acrylics to pant them like bronze.
<img:stuff/paintedmongol.jpg>

Here is the finished piece... hope this was helpful. If anyone has any questions feel free to ask.

Go forth and make stuff! :-)

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2006-04-30 [Saray]: Chocolate... :o must have!

2006-04-30 [playslashwrite]: hahahahhaah XD much better than chocolate easter bunnies XD

2006-05-01 [smakeupfx]: Chocolate Dutch Pirates will be all the rage in the future

2006-05-01 [irulan]: Chocolate pirates! How could you not love that? They could stab the easter bunnies! ;)

2006-05-01 [smakeupfx]: Made from melted down easter bunnies! hehehehe

2006-05-01 [irulan]: Even better! :D

2006-05-01 [eyes of frost]: You know...If I was even half talented and actually passed ceramics and sculpture...I might be able to do this. Lol.

2006-05-01 [smakeupfx]: ewwww, ceramics.... kicked my butt... I dropped the class... it's like sculpting moving objects! hehe

2006-05-01 [eyes of frost]: Lol. Well let's just say...rachel's projects either blew up in the kiln...or..well...just didn't come out the way they went in. *Sarcasm*

2006-05-01 [smakeupfx]: yep, i'm with ya... i've exploded more than one in my time... now... it's all molds and casts baby!  yay!

2006-05-01 [eyes of frost]: Lol. Well I would probably end up making something horribly...wrong.

2006-05-01 [smakeupfx]: yep, you would hehehe, then you do it again... and again.... easy as pie ;-)

2006-05-01 [eyes of frost]: Lol. I am more into my drawing/painting. Grarg...I really need to add more to my diviant gallery...and I need some canvas for painting...grarg...I NEED MONEY!!

2006-05-01 [Saray]: Chocolate Dutch Pirates... does that mean we're going to be covered in chocolate? :D

2006-05-01 [playslashwrite]: i hope so ^^

2006-05-01 [Saray]: that'd be fun :D

2006-05-01 [smakeupfx]: what you two do in your own home is compleatly up to you  (um... take pictures LOL)

2006-05-01 [Saray]: HAHAHA :P

2006-05-01 [playslashwrite]: perverd:p

2006-05-01 [smakeupfx]: yeah, she is, but she's still fun ;-)

2006-05-01 [playslashwrite]: since when are you female and do you talk about yourself in 3rd person mode? :p

2006-05-01 [smakeupfx]: Ohhh, you ment me?  ;-)

2006-05-01 [playslashwrite]: you didnt think i was talking about saray did you? :p

2006-05-01 [Saray]: Well, ofcourse. Since I AM a pervert :P

2006-05-01 [playslashwrite]: youre far far worse:p

2006-05-01 [Saray]: teehee!

2006-05-01 [smakeupfx]: hahahahaha *sniff* i lub you guys

2006-05-01 [playslashwrite]: we lub you too:p (p.s. pictures are in the mail :p)

2006-05-01 [Saray]: yes, of our nekkid chocolaty goodness XD

2006-05-01 [smakeupfx]: It's for the best... since chocolate is really hard to get out of leather ;-)

2006-05-01 [Saray]: yesh... teehee!

2006-05-01 [playslashwrite]: who says im dressed in lea- hey!:p

2006-05-01 [smakeupfx]: Oh, we've had your hidden webcams up for months....  TrennasLifeShow.com  hehehe

2006-05-01 [Saray]: w00t!

2006-05-01 [playslashwrite]: now that would be a good idea to make some extra money XD wait.. where is that money going to? :p

2006-05-01 [smakeupfx]: The SAVE TIM fund... it's a very respectible charity

2006-05-01 [Saray]: How about the "Buy Trennas and Saray a House Fund"?

2006-05-01 [playslashwrite]: so let me get this straight.. every time i get nekkid and covered in chocolate you receive money for it?:p

2006-05-01 [Saray]: Yeah, that's not right. We should be paid for our artistic engagements of nekkidness!

2006-05-01 [playslashwrite]: not you! me!:p

2006-05-01 [smakeupfx]: hahahaha (try and go for a percentage [playslashwrite] i'm thinking she can pull in some serious money ;-)

2006-05-01 [Saray]: with my soon to be real body jewelry... maybe ;)

2006-05-01 [playslashwrite]: slutty saray :p i like it XD

2006-05-01 [Saray]: teehee :D

2006-05-01 [smakeupfx]: hummm, what's real body jewelry?

2006-05-01 [smakeupfx]: real-body jewelry... or real body-jewelry hehe

2006-05-01 [playslashwrite]: you figure it out:p

2006-05-01 [smakeupfx]: Ouch!  LOL... i like the idea of dutchpirate dangly earings tho hahaha

2006-05-01 [playslashwrite]: oow yesh ^^ we'll call it Saray's booty!:p

2006-05-01 [smakeupfx]: (that's a whole other issue LOL)

2006-05-01 [playslashwrite]: nay, it is not:p

2006-05-01 [smakeupfx]: It's not? I think I forgot what we were talking about! ;-)

2006-05-01 [playslashwrite]: about putting saray up as a webcamslutirate:p

2006-05-01 [Saray]: but... but! Don't I have anything to say about this??

2006-05-01 [playslashwrite]: you get money :)

2006-05-01 [smakeupfx]: Oh you'll do well do... you'll be very popular in San Fransisco hehehe 

2006-05-01 [playslashwrite]: why there?:p

2006-05-01 [smakeupfx]: Ohhh, just a guess... but brokeback mountian did really well there ;-)

2006-05-01 [playslashwrite]: thats probably because all tickets were purchased by a certain mr T. Baker ^^

2006-05-01 [smakeupfx]: Hey!  (only becuase it was a good movie... nothing funny, I just like talent ;-P

2006-05-01 [playslashwrite]: sorry.. did you say you like tents? XD

2006-05-01 [smakeupfx]: nothing like a good tent .... maybe a kilt and a good breeze ;D

2006-05-01 [playslashwrite]: and.. NO.. underwear XD

2006-05-01 [smakeupfx]: underwhat?  never heard of such a thing ;-)

2006-05-01 [playslashwrite]: thats because yours is "glued" to your normal pants:p

2006-05-01 [smakeupfx]: ewwwww.... (too many bad images in brain!)

2006-05-01 [irulan]: From chocolate to Brokeback Mountain to "glued"...gotta love the range of topics! ;)

2006-05-01 [smakeupfx]: yep...We're versatile hehehe

2006-05-01 [playslashwrite]: he shoots he scores ^^ *marks another point for himself and 0 for tim:p*

2006-05-01 [irulan]: Versatile, riiight - that's it. ;)

2006-05-01 [playslashwrite]: that means we like it both ways ^^ doesnt it? :p

2006-05-01 [irulan]: LOL, yep! =P

2006-05-01 [playslashwrite]: i knew it ^^

2006-05-01 [Saray]: Versatile sounds like a cleaning agent.

2006-05-01 [smakeupfx]: Hey, I don't get any points?? I thought I was doing pretty well ;-\ *sulks off to clean the kitchen with New Improved Versatile!

2006-05-01 [playslashwrite]: you get a point if you succeed in separating your underwear from your normal pants with Versatile:p

2006-05-01 [smakeupfx]: um.... first I'd have to own some  LOL

2006-05-01 [playslashwrite]: order it from saraysbooty.com right now:p

2006-05-01 [smakeupfx]: ahh, since eBay wont sell those anymore?  hehehe *orders three pairs*

2006-05-01 [playslashwrite]: dude, only three?? youre gonna need more than that XD

2006-05-01 [smakeupfx]: come on, that's enough for three months!  i'm sure I can figure some'n out before then ;-P

2006-05-02 [playslashwrite]: maybe a blowtorch would be a better idea in your underwear situation :p

2006-05-02 [irulan]: Now that could be dangerous though...hehe, but it would work! ;)

2006-05-02 [Saray]: LOL!!!

2006-05-02 [playslashwrite]: we'll have BA to do it:p <img:http://blunt.cf.ac.uk/images/ba.jpg>

2006-05-02 [playslashwrite]: after the show got cancelled, the toy BA's became the guardian-cleaners of dirty underwear.. <img:http://www.evilface.com/evilscustoms/figurepix/BA.JPG>

2006-05-02 [Saray]: *nearly chokes laughing*

2006-05-02 [smakeupfx]: I pitty the fool what don't blast off his knickers wit a blowtorch!

2006-05-02 [playslashwrite]: dude you made me snort again!:p

2006-05-02 [smakeupfx]: It looks like Mr T is wearing satin blue boycut shorts? LOL

2006-05-02 [playslashwrite]: it matches his blue satin pantyhose XD

2006-05-02 [smakeupfx]: that his has streached out....again!  sheesh, he'll never learn

2006-05-02 [playslashwrite]: *shakes his head* never...:p

2006-05-02 [Jewl]: Now I love the athelete socks...

2006-05-02 [playslashwrite]: who doesnt? XD

2006-05-02 [Saray]: I want socks like that. And leggings.

2006-05-02 [playslashwrite]: and the gold chains? :p

2006-05-02 [Saray]: naw, silver is better.

2006-05-02 [smakeupfx]: silver is always better.... it's clean... pretty ... and wont show as much under shirts LOL

2006-05-02 [Saray]: Titanium is even better: lightweight, available in pretty high polish and pretty indestructible :3

2006-05-02 [smakeupfx]: This is true.... but my favorite is Mithril hehehe *dork*

2006-05-02 [Saray]: Haahahaha :P

2006-05-02 [playslashwrite]: so your secret job is at the dwarven mines? ;p

2006-05-02 [smakeupfx]: lets say I have a friend who has a friend ;-P

2006-05-02 [playslashwrite]: and that friend is half your size?:p

2006-05-02 [smakeupfx]: and hairy-er ;-P

2006-05-02 [Saray]: OMG. Hairy little men with pointy things.

2006-05-02 [smakeupfx]: yeah... they are good at digging tho... and fun to throw ;-P

2006-05-02 [playslashwrite]: they make great party guests!

2006-05-02 [smakeupfx]: just don't go with them to swingers clubs ;-P  (I like my women without beards ;-)

2006-05-03 [irulan]: Good thing I've been shaving. ;)

2006-05-03 [smakeupfx]: *tries... not to... make.. obvious jokes!*

2006-05-03 [Perplexity]: omg - he's gonna explode! let the joke out, man!

2006-05-03 [playslashwrite]: we don't have power captain!!

2006-05-03 [Saray]: Just shove some ... eh, nevermind XD

2006-05-03 [smakeupfx]: "just shove some" ..what? are ya try'n to kill me? LOL

2006-05-03 [playslashwrite]: wouldnt be her first try :p

2006-05-03 [smakeupfx]: Evil Vampire with Wolf Eyes! my mom always said to watch out for those types!

2006-05-03 [playslashwrite]: your mom is one of those types ^^

2006-05-03 [smakeupfx]: well yeah..... that's how she knows!

2006-05-03 [playslashwrite]: i feel so sorry for your father XD

2006-05-03 [smakeupfx]: don't have one...Immaculate Conception

2006-05-03 [playslashwrite]: so god does have a sense of humor after all ^^

2006-05-03 [Saray]: He does? Then why do I have RSI?

2006-05-03 [Saray]: Okay, I admit, it's all ironic.

2006-05-03 [smakeupfx]: bwahahahaha!  Saray's mood...can't....type...laughing.... XD

2006-05-03 [playslashwrite]: XD

2006-05-03 [Saray]: Hehe :P

2006-05-31 [Cyrano meets Merso]: Im soooooooooooooo untalented::( (intervetnion!!!!!!!!!!group hough).

2006-06-02 [smakeupfx]: don't feel bad cyrano... Mine has been gone since Saray and Trennas plundered my booty

2006-06-02 [Saray]: Yesh, we are good at plundering Tim's booty! >:3

2006-06-02 [playslashwrite]: ahhhrrr!!

2006-06-02 [smakeupfx]: tisk tisk tisk... naughty pirates!

2006-06-02 [irulan]: Wait...is there such a thing as not-naughty ones? Cause what fun would that be? ;)

2006-06-02 [smakeupfx]: Oh yes... for a while they changed the Pirates ride at Disneyland from them chasing women to chaseing...em, FOOD!  how un naughty is that?? and no fun either... thank imaginary-friend-in-the-sky (or "god" as my family says it ) that they changed it back

2006-06-03 [playslashwrite]: pff, they were asking for it, werent they? :p

2006-06-04 [Saray]: Food is not as much fun as sexy kittens! :o

2006-06-04 [Jewl]: XD "Got a nice juicy bone for ya.... can ye smell it? C'mon boy..."

2006-06-04 [playslashwrite]: *sniffs:p*

2006-06-04 [smakeupfx]: *fights the far too easy "bone" jokes*

2006-06-04 [playslashwrite]: it smells like cardboard:p where did you get that?!:p

2006-06-04 [smakeupfx]: hahahaha... jewl has a carboard bone?

2006-06-04 [playslashwrite]: im not making any accusations:p

2006-06-05 [Jewl]: XD Oh Gawd... no, any bones I have are REAL, compact, marrow, and spongy...

2006-06-05 [playslashwrite]: eeeewwwwww... :p

2006-06-05 [smakeupfx]: Real redhead and Real marrow too?  wow

2006-06-05 [Jewl]: *laughs so hard she falls over* Soooooooooooooooooooo many wrong things...

2006-06-05 [playslashwrite]: can never have enough of it ^^

2006-06-05 [Jewl]: enough of what?1

2006-06-05 [playslashwrite]: wrong things:p

2006-06-05 [smakeupfx]: DWT - Dirty Wrong Things, ahhhh

2006-06-05 [playslashwrite]: you know, you can make lots of interesting combinations with those three letters XD

2006-06-05 [Jewl]: Dirty Wenching Tart.... Dilligantly Watching Time.... Deliciously Whorish Town...

2006-06-05 [Jewl]: Deal With Trennas... XD

2006-06-05 [smakeupfx]: yes.... 27 of them actually ;-P  *is geek*

2006-06-05 [playslashwrite]: Dirty.. Wet.. T-Rex XD

2006-06-05 [smakeupfx]: bwahahahahaha!   you are a sick man

2006-06-05 [playslashwrite]: ill take that as a compliment ^^

2006-06-05 [Saray]: .... Dying With Tits?

2006-06-05 [smakeupfx]: hahahaha..... well, if ya have to go, there are worse ways ;-)

2006-06-05 [playslashwrite]: hahhahaa XD Dueling With Tablelegs?

2006-06-05 [smakeupfx]: hehehe, hummmm .... Werewolves Taste Delicious ?

2006-06-05 [smakeupfx]: They make a harty stew ;-P

2006-06-05 [playslashwrite]: more a hairy stew actuallyXD

2006-06-05 [smakeupfx]: ahhhhh!  bad images in my brain!!

2006-06-05 [Saray]: Wicked Trio of Doom!

2006-06-05 [playslashwrite]: hey you cheated on the werewolf thing:p Deliciously tasting werewolves are allowed;)

2006-06-05 [playslashwrite]: add your findings here!: Dirty Wrong Things!!

2006-06-05 [Saray]: Can I use dirty language? Can I?

2006-06-05 [playslashwrite]: yesh, but keep it original ;)

2006-06-05 [Saray]: Moi, original?

2006-06-06 [playslashwrite]: mais oui ^^

2006-06-06 [Saray]: Mais non! :o

2006-06-06 [playslashwrite]: MAIS OUI!

2006-06-06 [Saray]: Okay okay! :o

2006-06-06 [playslashwrite]: Mais Que Nada!

2006-06-06 [Saray]: errhhh... right! Totally!

2006-06-08 [smakeupfx]: I was just going to say that!

2006-06-08 [Saray]: Silly minds think alike ;) great ones too, hehe :P

2006-06-08 [playslashwrite]: silly ones more often ^^

2006-06-08 [smakeupfx]: <--- silly in a great way

2006-06-08 [Saray]: teehee :p

2006-07-28 [Radioactive Flea]: Not sure about being silly, but gassy maybe

2007-01-02 [Hedda]: http://elftown.lysator.liu.se/stuff/paintedmongol.jpg didn't work anymore due to non working smakeupfx.com so I used the IP-number instead and downloaded the images to Elftown where they will always work. I hope that's OK with you.

This is a pretty popular page.

2007-01-02 [Jewl]: YAAAY HEDDA!

2007-01-04 [smakeupfx]: Once again... Thanks [Hedda] :-)  you so rock 

2007-01-09 [Nyaah*]: hey tim, the teacher just told us we will do a skull silicone mold this year! *YEAAAH*

2007-01-09 [playslashwrite]: ooh thats awesome:D

2007-01-09 [smakeupfx]: Oh very fun, once you do one and see how simple the material is to work with, you get this moment of clarity where you realize...."I can make anything!"  :D

2007-01-09 [Nyaah*]: haha! uuh i will see! we are the very first class on my school what will do that! coz the teacher tried it themself and thought it would be a good thing to learn for us too :P *YAY! looking forward*

2008-05-07 [The Right]: it's really cool, but of course, for some odd reason... the first thing I could think if was...."Wow.... that's a penis. " I know. I'm completely fucking immature. I mean well though. It does look good.

2008-05-07 [smakeupfx]: ha, well, the first job I interviewed for as a sculptor, was making molds and prototype for a dildo made for a porn star.  I was so embaraced I just nodded politly and got the hell out of there!  LOL

2008-05-14 [Saray]: HAHAHAHA, hilarious! That would've been an interesting job XD

2008-05-15 [smakeupfx]: hehe, yeah as a young kid in LA looking for work it scared the piss out of me, I never returned his calls... there are somethings i didn't get in this business to cast hehehe

2009-11-15 [Nyaah*]: see thats how we do it:
<img148*0:http://elftown.com/stuff/aj/24454/1258233491.jpg>  <img185*0:stuff/aj/24454/1258286252.jpg>  <img330*0:http://elftown.com/stuff/aj/24454/1258233505.jpg>
very easy and your saving silicone!

2009-11-19 [Jewl]: oooooh tim i gots a question. Is there a particular method you use for painting hair/fur on a clay or silicone mold?

2009-11-20 [smakeupfx]: That's a great mold Nyaah! we call that a "case mold" or a "matrix mold"  I use those too when I have time. yours looks perfect! well done hun!

2009-11-20 [smakeupfx]: hmmm, you mean add hair to a silicone piece? I never have to a mold, but to add hair I punch it in one hair at a time. I make a tool by cutting the eye of a needle in half and pushing the point into a paint brush handle, you can use it to push one end of the hair or group of hairs into the silicone. is that what you want to know?

2009-11-20 [Nyaah*]: we call it "skin" mold. when you have the time? this is so fast!! :D

2009-11-22 [Jewl]: Well that helps! But also I mean a method of painting on the hair/fur in a realistic way while still being made out of the silicone/clay?

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