Delving into the Look and Feel of Cold Cast Pieces

All castings don’t have to look like regular plaster, resin or rubber. It is possible to duplicate a metallic, stone or ceramic effect by using cold casting powders. Even the feel will be very authentic!

Cold casting may sound like a complicated and intricate procedure. After all, who would think that regular resin can be used to replicate the look of metal, ceramic or stone! And the effects achieved are indeed quite realistic and believable. That too, without the expense, risk or other issues associated with crafting the original ones.

But who would think that the procedure is as simple as adding a special cold casting powder to the resin and catalyst!

Indeed, the whole casting procedure basically proceeds as usual. Mix the resin with the catalyst and the cold casting powder – there are options of porcelain, marble, limestone, brass, tin, bronze, copper and even wood. This is brushed or poured into the mold to form a thick coating.

The primary difference is not to fill the mold at one go. Instead, the coating is allowed to cure before backfilling the mold with resin mixed with a filler – this can be fiberglass, steel shots, calcium carbonate or even sand – to get the desired weight. This is the usual process for smaller pieces. For bigger ones, many artists opt to dust, spray or slush the cold casting powder so as to conserve the usage.

After curing, all that is required is abrading or burnishing the surface with fine steel wool. This will remove the microscopic binder to reveal the pure filler powder effect beneath. Keep in mind that tin powder can be used to achieve the look of pewter, aged iron, nickel silver or stainless steel.

What’s more, the metal surface will even tend to oxidize just like the original foundry cast metal sculpture! It can be also be artificially oxidized using patina acids to create a variety of artistic effects.

How does the cast feel?

The best part is that the realistic effect is not limited to the look and weight of the casting. It will even feel like the metal or stone that is being imitated to the extent that it becomes difficult to tell it apart from an original.

The only difference is that it will ‘clink like ceramic’ and feel cool to the touch. Also, it will not take high polish as well as the original. Therefore, cold castings are considered best for cosmetic use. They can be used for making replacement parts and for refurbishing antique items.

When it comes to sourcing the cold casting powders, EnvironMolds is the best resource. It offers a selection of brass, copper, tin, bronze, limestone, pecan shell, marble and porcelain powder 325-mesh that lend themselves well for achieving different effects.

Indulge in the simple and easy procedure of cold casting and enjoy watching the way the replicas turn out looking indecipherable from an original carved from metal, stone or porcelain!

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