Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Preparing & Pouring the Bronze

testing the temperature of the molten bronze
August 2017
Eagle Bronze Foundry
Lander, WY
As Sue and I exited the plaster and drying room, we discovered two men preparing to pour molten bronze into molds. One of the men tested the temperature of the bronze with a long rod with a thermometer at the end.
removing the molds from the kiln where the wax was
melted, leaving a mold of plaster
As the temperature increased, the molds were removed from a kiln. The kiln melts the wax inside the mold, leaving only a mold of plaster. Our guide told us the melted wax is captured and reused many times.

The  molds were placed in a bed of sand. You can see the glowing crucible of molten bronze with a bar clamped on it.

carefully, the molten bronze is poured into the waiting molds
the amount of strength it takes to handle the crucible
 filled with molten bronze was evident. 
The man on the right without the protective gear came in and help with the pour because a new worker did not have the strength to handle the crucible. Our guild told us, it was imperative the metal be poured while it was at the correct temperature or the crucible would be ruined. Any bronze remaining after the molds are filled are poured into the metal ingot molds near the man's feet.

Ten minutes later, the bronze is cooling in the plaster molds.
Note the mold on the bottom left was not poured because
there was not enough bronze left in the crucible.
Once the bronze-filled molds have cooled completely, the plaster is broken away.
components of a bronze statue with the plaster mold removed
box of bronze ingots - destined to become statues
Next, assembling the statues. . .

8 comments:

  1. Wow. This series gives me a whole new appreciation of what happens when a statue is put together. I wish everyone could see this, so that they would have a respect for the workmanship involved. Thanks again for sharing this!

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  2. So interesting! The picture of the molten bronze was especially amazing.

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  3. WHat a complex and precise process. The man stepping in to the mold area, even with one foot, made me nervous!!!

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  4. Nancy, you have provided quite an education for us. I found this all so interesting. I had no idea all of the steps involved. Thank you so much!
    Blessings,
    Betsy

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  5. I think the hands on manual skills are what make the results so incredible! Amazing!

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  6. Thanks for such another interesting post on this complex process. I just finished reading about Michelangelo and it talked about bronze statues. I wonder how much the process has changed since his day?

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  7. I can't imagine pouring that hot liquid ...YIKES! Don't want to get inattentive at THAT point.

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