Jurassic World - Bee in Amber

Discussion in 'Replica Props' started by Pocko, Aug 8, 2015.

  1. Pocko

    Pocko Active Member

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    Hello All,

    I just wanted to share my latest project. It's been a big learning experience for me!

    Amber1.jpg Amber3.jpg Amber5.jpg

    I decided that I would try to make myself an insect trapped in amber. I've always loved Jurassic Park, and the recent release of Jurassic World has really got me excited!

    Originally I'd intended to collect up dead insects that I came across around the house, as I didn't want to kill any insects unnecessarily. In a stroke of luck, I found that a bumble bee colony had formed under our neighbour's decking. It appears that these particular bumble bees have a very specific lifespan, as we started to see dead ones all over our yard.

    I collected some of these up, selecting them for size and condition, and dried them out in the plate-warming section of our oven (to avoid any fluids leaking out into the resin).

    I then began the process of trapping the bees in resin. This took me a number of attempts. The first experiment showed me that the bees would float, that my "amber" dye was far too yellow, and that I'd used far too much dye. This resulted in a bee half trapped in very greeny-yellow, opaque resin. The resin starts with a blue tint, so adding yellow dye made a yellow that was leaning towards green!

    On the second run, I mixed up the resin to the correct colour (with added red), then split it in half. I added catalyst and poured the resin into some plastic cups (with a bee added). When this was starting to set, I added the second half of the resin (with catalyst).

    Pouring the resin in two stages meant that the bee was right in the middle, and by mixing up the colour first, it meant that the join was seamless.

    These were very close, but had got too hot when the resin hardened, so that some trapped air had expanded and caused a crack.

    Third time lucky!

    Once I had a cast I was happy with, I shaped the resin block with my Dremel. I then sanded the block using large grit sandpaper (50 and 80) then moving on to wet and dry paper right through to 2500 grit. To get the final shine, I used T-Cut Scratch Remover as a polish. (This is slightly abrasive, so removes the very tiniest scratches from the fine wet and dry paper).

    I then gave it a final polish with a very soft cloth, and got sone photos!

    I'm hoping to get hold of a dead cranefly at some point, but they come later in the summer here.

    As for back story.. Well, if a mosquito can carry dinosaur DNA in blood that it's gathered, then perhaps a bee can carry plant DNA in pollen that it's collected... Where else did they get those plants that Ellie Sattler mentions?



    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 9, 2018
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  2. Mike J.

    Mike J. Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Very clever!
  3. allosaur176

    allosaur176 Sr Member

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    Awesome work! now try to make some of those amber slices from JW and do a run ;)
  4. Mike J.

    Mike J. Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Or the plant frond from Jurassic Park.

    Or the honeybee paperweight from Mr. Holmes.
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2015

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