Casting resin for small pieces

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Casting resin for small pieces

Joined: February 22nd, 2012, 5:52 pm

July 21st, 2012, 6:47 pm #1

My brother in laws is using Alumilite for casting small pieces and 10mm figures. he was complaining that they have changed their formula and it doesn't work as well. Since I know there are a few people on this list who cast for a living I was wondering if anyone had any suggestions for a good casting resin that's available in small lots, with a decent set-up time, that wouldn't break the bank? I did search the site and saw some previous recommendations, but I wasn't sure if they were suitable for this application or not, so thought I ask.

Michael
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Joined: February 27th, 2006, 6:25 pm

July 21st, 2012, 6:59 pm #2

Not sure how small a quantity you can buy.
Go to Glenmarc resins and check. They are my supplier and in the Chicago USA area.
I us something called 36XXX180. I think that is it/ They just changed the part number. The 180 means you have 180 seconds to use it.

Mike
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Joined: February 27th, 2005, 4:14 am

July 21st, 2012, 8:51 pm #3

My brother in laws is using Alumilite for casting small pieces and 10mm figures. he was complaining that they have changed their formula and it doesn't work as well. Since I know there are a few people on this list who cast for a living I was wondering if anyone had any suggestions for a good casting resin that's available in small lots, with a decent set-up time, that wouldn't break the bank? I did search the site and saw some previous recommendations, but I wasn't sure if they were suitable for this application or not, so thought I ask.

Michael
I use Vagabond 36XXX slow for my bases. But for other things I've come to like some of the slower Smooth On resins. The Smooth Cast 320 gives me a good casting, and the 7 minute pot life gives me enough time that I don't feel like I'm racing the resin. Once you get used to working with the stuff, the faster kick of the Vagabond is nice, but if you're not doing that much casting, a 3 minute de-mold time can be pretty quick.

Mike
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Joined: February 27th, 2005, 7:47 pm

July 21st, 2012, 9:50 pm #4

Not sure how small a quantity you can buy.
Go to Glenmarc resins and check. They are my supplier and in the Chicago USA area.
I us something called 36XXX180. I think that is it/ They just changed the part number. The 180 means you have 180 seconds to use it.

Mike
Vagabond is great stuff. If you need small quantities, you can order it from CRM Hobbies in St. Louis. That's where I get mine from. They have small bottle and quart sized bottles.
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Joined: September 5th, 2005, 7:18 pm

July 22nd, 2012, 7:15 pm #5

I use Vagabond 36XXX slow for my bases. But for other things I've come to like some of the slower Smooth On resins. The Smooth Cast 320 gives me a good casting, and the 7 minute pot life gives me enough time that I don't feel like I'm racing the resin. Once you get used to working with the stuff, the faster kick of the Vagabond is nice, but if you're not doing that much casting, a 3 minute de-mold time can be pretty quick.

Mike
How well does it handle detail? I have some small thin pieces and I also want to try and cast soem 1/35 figures. What do you use for the actual mold? TIA
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Joined: September 5th, 2005, 7:18 pm

July 22nd, 2012, 7:19 pm #6

Not sure how small a quantity you can buy.
Go to Glenmarc resins and check. They are my supplier and in the Chicago USA area.
I us something called 36XXX180. I think that is it/ They just changed the part number. The 180 means you have 180 seconds to use it.

Mike
I want to do some 1/35 scale figures also and am looking for a good product.
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Joined: January 27th, 2004, 10:53 pm

July 22nd, 2012, 8:46 pm #7

How well does it handle detail? I have some small thin pieces and I also want to try and cast soem 1/35 figures. What do you use for the actual mold? TIA
...http://www.smooth-on.com/

I'm sure Mike will know more.



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Joined: February 27th, 2005, 4:14 am

July 23rd, 2012, 2:44 am #8

How well does it handle detail? I have some small thin pieces and I also want to try and cast soem 1/35 figures. What do you use for the actual mold? TIA
I get very nice detail out of the Smooth Cast resin and you should be able to cast it as thin as you think your part needs. As far as mold material, it depends on what I'm trying to do. I've been using their Mold Max silicone rubber. For most things I do, I like the Mold Max 30, but I've also gotten great results with the Mold Max 10 for one piece molds. The MM 10 is soft enough that pulling a 1/35 wheel out of a one piece mold is easy with some care. Of course, being so soft, it is a bit more delicate and won't last as long.

If you don't have a vacuum pump/pot, you can use their Oomoo rubber, as it doesn't need to be vacuumed, but the stuff dries out and cracks pretty easily. In other words, mold life is pretty short, and the rubber is about 50% more expensive. It is also the same stuff that Micro Mark sells. Micro Mark just private labels it.

And if you want to get good castings with good detail, you're going to need a pressure pot. Without a pot, you're going to need a ton of vents, which will make part clean up a lot more tiresome, and you'll still end up throwing away a lot of parts due to air bubbles.

Mike
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Joined: February 27th, 2006, 6:25 pm

July 23rd, 2012, 3:28 am #9

I want to do some 1/35 scale figures also and am looking for a good product.
for the past some 30 years I used Dow 3110 but my supplier has changed their size containers and delivery is sketchy so I switched to Silpak. They have small containers available too. I buy a gallon size pail at a time.
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Joined: February 27th, 2006, 6:25 pm

July 23rd, 2012, 3:32 am #10

How well does it handle detail? I have some small thin pieces and I also want to try and cast soem 1/35 figures. What do you use for the actual mold? TIA
Some parts were great some didn't cure. It seems the Smooth On formula is more snsitive to the measurements being almost spot on for it to cure correctly. Vagabond has a 10% or 15% plus/minus range and it will still cure solid.

I have made some pretty fine parts with it and was happy with the results. Also I have made some massive items with it like the ME-264.
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