Carole Lee





 People often ask me "How do you carve bronze" ...

... this is an explanation of the process


—an alloy of copper 75-90% and tin-at least 10%, zinc and lead will be added


Lost wax casting takes many steps. The original may be wood, wax, clay, stone or plaster.


A mold must be made of the sculpture. Silicone rubber is painted onto the sculpture. A mother mold is then made with plaster to give stability to the silicone. There may be 2 or more pieces to the mold depending on the intricacy of the sculpture.


The sculpture is removed and the mold cleaned and put together. Hot wax is then poured or painted on the rubber mold pieces. The thickness is dependant on the size of the piece. When the wax has cooled the rubber mold is peeled off. The wax is checked and repaired if necessary.


A sprue system is attached to the wax duplicate. This will allow the bronze to flow to all areas and the gases to escape.


Next the wax is dipped into a slurry-a viscous solution. It is then coated with silica sand and dried. This process is repeated two or three times then the dry application is changed to a fine plaster like material. The amount of layers depends on the size of the piece.  This covering is called a shell.


When the layering is complete and dry the shell is placed in a large kiln and the wax is melted out. Lost wax.


The hot bronze is then poured into the shell, when it has cooled the shell is removed by chipping, and sandblasting.


The sprues are now cut off and the areas where they were are retextures.  If it is a larger piece it would be welded together


A patina-color– is then applied. The patina {chemical} can be applied in many ways. Hot-with a torch cold, dip, brush or buried  A seal is applied .


You then decide on the type of base on which you would like to rest the sculpture.



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