Molding: clear acrylic spray and reusability of clay

Scrapps

New Member
So, I'm not quite at the molding stage yet, but I'm double and triple checking every process from here on out to avoid screwing up. My sculpt has become like my baby and I would be so mad if something happened to it or if it didn't turn out right after all the hard work I've put into it.

So, I've got the handbook that came with the monstermakers kit and I read that you need to spray the mold with clear acrylic spray. So, I'm guessing that this is to protect the details of the sculpt when it's molded? (I always like to know the why, not just the how.)

Anyway, the handbook didn't really go into detail when it comes to reusing the clay, just how to clean it out of the mold. With that acrylic spray in the mix, am I going to have to treat it differently than clay fresh out of the box? am I supposed to throw away that layer of acrylic-clay? I bought the amount of clay that I did assuming that I was going to reuse 100% of the clay over again so, if there is going to be a considerable amount of waste, I'd like to know so I can order more ASAP.

Also as far as cleaning the clay out of the mold, the handbook says use alcohol, but then again, it said use alcohol to smooth out the clay but alcohol didn't really do anything to the clay. I emailed them and they suggested to use a little bit of mineral spirits or paint thinner. It worked like a charm but will that do anything to the mold (I'm using ultracal)?

If I don't get a response, I'll probably email monstermakers but I bet they're totally flooded with orders and probably won't get back to me in a while, especially with christmas and new years and all.

I'm really eager to get the ball rolling on this so any help is always appreciated.

Thanks,
~Scrapps
 

Elkman

New Member
I think the clear acrylic spray is used to keep the plaster from sticking to the clay more than is necessary. You could maybe get away without it, but then that would make it harder to clear the clay out of the mold afterward.

As far as reusing clay is concerned, I've reused the clay from several of my mask sculptures without problems. You might want to scrape off just a little bit of the acrylic layer if there are any thick spots, just so you aren't mixing a lot of plastic bits in with your clay. You'll also have to watch out for little bits of Ultracal 30 that break off and work their way into your clay. It isn't difficult to pick them out, either when you're cleaning out your mold or as you're making a new sculpt, but it's something to be aware of.

I've never used mineral spirits to clean the clay out of a mold. I've usually used toothpicks or other soft implements to get those tiny little bits of clay out of the ridges, as well as a little bit of rubbing alcohol on a brush or a Q-tip. I wouldn't go pouring a lot of rubbing alcohol or mineral spirits into the mold, because you don't want to get a lot of foreign materials into there. It probably wouldn't make that much of a difference anyway, since the main problem is the little bits of clay that get into the ridges.

If you've got any other questions, feel free to ask.
 

hez1

New Member
As far as reusing the clay, you can either strip off the top layer off the sculpt after molding and throw it away, or you can mash it up real good, and it should be OK to use again. I've reused clay in this way after spraying with with clearcoat. It's not that big a deal.
 

Scrapps

New Member
I was hoping that it wouldn't mess up the clay for good, especially since it is marketed as reusable. I have a feeling that the oil based clay they used in the monstermaker's handbook is slightly different than what they carry now. I'll probably toss the topmost layer of the clay, just in case but it's good to know that if I miss a little bit, it's not too big of a deal.
 

ptgreek

Active Member
So more to add. When using utensiles to pick out clay from a mold, steer clear of anything metal.. It could scrape the plaster. Tricks include, splitting a Popsicle stick or tongue depressor.. Basically anything wood. Highly pressurized air will peel clay right out of a mold too. Regular rubbing alcohol won't really do the trick.. Find 99% alcohol for clay burning properties.. It has a high evaporation rate.. You really can't contaminate your mold with it
 

xdmray

Well-Known Member
a little bit of clear coat in your clay is fine, but if it bugs you to have the paint in your clay, you can always just do a a really fine scrape and toss the outermost layer. all that is needed is a super thin scrape. hardly any clay is thrown away.
 

afedorniak

New Member
i use vaseline on my clay,before casting,not much clay stuck to the cast,only thing leaves the clay weird with the vaseline on !!
 
Top