Workshop – Vinamold & Wax relief – Wax sugar mice

In one of our various inductions we used Vinamold to make molds in order to cast from with modelling wax.

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First we cut the Vinamold into small chunks put them into a heatproof container. It then needs to be melted down, which can be done using a specialist piece of equipment which takes several hours, but our technician told us a microwave is much faster and easier. We microwaved the vinamold chunks for 2-3 minutes stirring it until it became a fluid.

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Just as with plaster casting you need to surround the object with walls, and then pour in the liquid. I made a simple one part mold of a ceramic sugar mouse I bought from Tent London, as the underside is unimportant and will be created by the wax relief anyway. I expect the ceramic mouse itself was created in the same manner but using slip casting and plaster rather than wax and vinamold.

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We used a special type of molding wax which only comes in green, but can pick up lots of detail (though that might be wasted on my sugar mouse..). I didn’t want to create a solid object, so I had to wait for the wax to cool slightly before I poured it in, and then waited roughly 30 seconds for the outside to cool and harden and then pour the inside back into the pan. Even though the outside has cooled, it’s not fully set, and trying to take it out of the mold would cause it to tear, so you need to dunk the wax into water to make it harden. If you’re creating a larger, more solid object you might want to leave it in the water for a while so that the whole object sets.

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A few hours of repetition later, and ta-dah! All the wax mice you could ever possibly want! I tidied the bottom with a scalpel, and will pierce a hole and thread through a string tail later as a final touch

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