Bronze Masterpiece Statues of Hindu Gods by Bronze Creative  

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The Lost Wax Method Stage 2 Forming the Earthen Mold
 
The purpose of this step is to create an exact copy of the wax model that was created in the first step within an earthen casing.  The wax model of the figure and the wax model of the base are molded separately. 

 

 


Wax model of Ganesh

The first step is to pour sand onto a small stool.  Then a small towel is placed over the sand with the edges of the towel being pushed beneath the sand.  This acts as a stand for the wax mold.  Then the wax model is placed face up on the towel.  The wax model is ready for the earthen mold to be applied.


Wax model of Ganesh being placed on white towel with sand underneath

The edges of the white towel are being tucked into the sand

 
The first layer of the mold is composed of fine, wet river silt.  The river silt is fine enough to fit into every detail of the wax mold.  It is carefully pressed into every area of the front of the wax model.  The piece is then placed in the sun to dry.

 

 


Ganesh is being covered in fine wet river silt

 After the first layer is dry iron rods are placed vertically over the river silt.  Then a layer of wet sand and clay are placed over the first layer and the iron rods.  The iron rods give vertical support to the mold.  The front side is then left to dry.


After the mold is covered in river silt and left to dry iron rods are placed onto the mold for strength during the firing process

The iron rods are then covered in wet sand and clay

 
After the front side is dry the piece is carefully picked up and flipped over.  

 

 


The mold is half complete and needs to be flipped in order to cover the opposite side

The wax model has runners that make sure the bronze flows throughout the piece during the pouring of the metal

A large wax rod is then joined to the base of the piece by heating both sides with a hot file.  This is for the metal to be poured into during the pouring of the liquid metal into the mold.  They are called “pouring spouts”.  


Varadaraj applies the pouring spout

The attached pouring spout

The completed pouring spout
The process of applying the earthen mold is then repeated on the backside.  First a fine layer of river silt is applied then left to dry.  Then the iron rods and another layer of sand and clay are applied and allowed to dry.

 

 


Completed earthen molds drying in the south Indian sun

The next step is to reinforce the entire piece horizontally.  Because the mold is actually made of two separate pieces of earthen mold they must be held together so that they do not come apart during casting.   Thus an iron wire is wrapped around the entire piece.  The wire must be wrapped very tightly to hold the two earth sides together.  This is done by using a pair of pliers to twist the wire decreasing the over length of the wire and making it tight. 


Iron wire is wrapped around the dry mold

The iron is then tightened

 

A final layer of very wet sand and clay is the smoothed over the iron wire to insulate the iron against the extreme heat of the casting of the mold.  The final mold is a very hard and strong ball of earth with two pouring spouts on one side of the mold. 


Water is sprinkled on the earthen mold and iron

Wet sand and clay is applied to the outside

A piece covered in wet sand and clay

 

Approximate times for the above process from start to finish is;

5 days for a 12 inch wax mold
8 days for a 24 inch wax mold
10 days for a 36 inch wax mold
12 days for a 48 inch wax mold
15 days for a 60 inch wax mold
15 days for a 72 inch wax mold 

This is provided that the south Indian sun is strong as usual.  Clouds or rain will inevitably lengthen the drying process.

Stage 1
Wax mold
Stage 2
Earthen mold
Next Step, Stage 3
Melting wax
Stage 4
Pouring the metal
Stage 5
Finishing the bronze

 

  Learn About
Packing and Shipping
  How the Statues are made.
Lost wax Method
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