Reusable Mold Making Material - ComposiMold

Discussion in 'Replica Props' started by Yodajammies, Oct 26, 2011.

  1. Yodajammies

    Yodajammies Sr Member

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  2. BLACKULA727

    BLACKULA727 Active Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Yeah, I'm going to have to test this stuff out. Never heard of it. Cool find though.
     
  3. kursosawa

    kursosawa Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    I too will have to try this out. Making molds of parts i only need 2-3 copies for is getting kinda pricey.
     
  4. Wes R

    Wes R Legendary Member

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    This stuff would be a life saver, like Kurosawa says it's not worth it when you're only making a small run of items.
     
  5. adamata

    adamata Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Wow, I think I am going to give that stuff a try!

    edit: just ordered the test size kit. BTW, the ordering process is kinda ugly as far as the website goes.
     
    Last edited: Oct 26, 2011
  6. robstyle

    robstyle Master Member

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    This isnt in regards to ComposiMold but a similar product thats yet to be released. Ive worked with a products manufacturer to develop a similar product but the end result was limited to none heat cure materials, didnt respond well to pigments or brushed in powders including talc/baby powder. Its still under development to try and at least tame one of those issues. Ill give this stuff a shot though, maybe within the next two weeks.
     
  7. Yodajammies

    Yodajammies Sr Member

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    Hmmm, interesting. Keep us in the loop.

    I went ahead and ordered a quart of this stuff, so I'll report back on this stuff by next week or so. Or not at all if I forget to check the thread. :p
     
  8. Yodajammies

    Yodajammies Sr Member

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    Save your $. http://www.composimold.com/files/MSDS_ComposiMold.pdf

    This stuff is just glycerine and gelatin with a preservative. You can easily make your own molding material with some simple recipes found on the internet.

    That being said, my trial kit came in today and it looks like this stuff is fairly legit. If you don't want to take the time to make your own, this wouldn't be a terrible alternative.
     
  9. Sandman0077

    Sandman0077 Sr Member

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    Looks beast. Might have to pick some up.
     
  10. Sean

    Sean Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    I think it would be great for someone like me who wants too learn mold and casting.that blue mold material is expensive.can anyone point me to a recipe for glycerine and gelatin with a preservative?
     
  11. robstyle

    robstyle Master Member

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    Just poured a mold with the 32oz Powermold stuff. Simple open mold parts. Just as with non evacuated silicone I used a stir stick to lay the first few layers on the parts to help void any potential air bubbles and pockets. Its very much like hot glue and smells like a couple athletic girls I used to know. It should be set up this afternoon so ill post some pics.
     
  12. adamata

    adamata Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    I got a 6oz sample to play with. my thoughts:

    + easy to use
    + reusable

    - Lots of bubble against part
    - smells like a wet dog

    Now, i am going to try that trick with the stir stick or a disposable brush to see if that helps.

    I would say that if you can get the bubbles off the surface, it would be great to use for small dump molds, etc. Also it is a great way to learn how to mold without it being to expensive.
     
  13. fettster

    fettster Sr Member

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    20 grams 300 bloom gelatin powder
    45 grams glycerine liquid
    45 grams sorbital liquid
    2 grams zinc oxide powder.

    mix and heat the 2 liquids and mix in the gelatine and zinc powder. gelatine melts at 70 degrees. keep on heat and mix untill the powder is completly absorbed but do not let the mixture boil as it destroys the strengh of the rubber.

    leave to cool and set (preferably overnight) and then re-melt as needed.

    you can add more gelatine poweder to your initial mix to make a firmer rubber
     
  14. Ozymandius

    Ozymandius Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Another reusable mold material I've seen before is something called FlexWax. It's a fairly stiff material, so I doubt it would be good for intricate details or undercuts.

    Could see it being useful on large pieces with low detail like gun covers (thinking something like an Aliens pulse rifle here).
     
  15. robstyle

    robstyle Master Member

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    Keep in mind I used the 32ox Powermold and not the standard CompsiMold material when reading the following. Not too certain however any results would be different.

    I cant really recommend this stuff due to its issues with bubbles. I followed the directions carefully heating the material one minute at a time, stirring and heating till it was very fluid. Even when using the most cautious and thin as possible thin stream of the stuff held at a decent height above the part, as mentioned scooped and layered over the parts with a stir stick, it has bubbles. Whats worse is you cant see these bubbles, I looked very closely before pouring more and couldnt see them. No I didnt "dump" any of the material as I was after the best possible outcome. If this were silicone the bubbles would have had the chance to rise. I also wouldnt use a chip brush to move the stuff around a part as I believe with the materials consistency the brush would just bring more air bubbles into the mix.

    This was done over various parts consisting of brass, steel, aluminum, chrome, lead and plastic. The material stuck to none of the parts being molded. It did however eat into the poster board that was used for the walls and base. Normally I use styrene for that and did on a single wall. I was more or less curious to the materials reaction to either and was certain the material would eat into the poster board but silicone does not when treated with vaseline or mold release. In this instance I used both as the mold release was needed for the metal parts to held keep the shine. Seems the heat of the Composimold had its way with both the mold release and the vaseline.

    One other test was to see how the material would do when you dont have enough material and need to do a second pour. I did this by molding three inert 9mm pistol rounds. The tips were left with a top layer as good as the material would take. There is no way a second pour could be done on a part. Air bubbles flock to uneven surfaces. In fact if you eye the upper right in the first picture you will see a number of bubbles near the surface. This was from trying to get a single smaller bubble away from the part! This again brings me to the theory a brush will not work with this material.

    Ill pour some parts over the weekend to see how usable or salvageable they can be. I have zero hope the parts will be usable as the two smaller badges are meant to be for remastering. The other two large badges were just to test surface and material reaction to the Composimold. Not even with a super smooth surface were air bubbles impervious.

    My final thought, if your on the road or location, in a pinch this stuff could pull a simple mold. The end result inst for props or items to be viewed under scrutiny.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  16. Sean

    Sean Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Aliens pulse rifle.aahhh now you have me drooling.Shame the stuff doesn't work that well...
     
  17. robstyle

    robstyle Master Member

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    Its much like ballistics gel.
     
  18. Amish Trooper

    Amish Trooper Sr Member

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    I can see it being a good mold material for stuff that has a stone or heavily textured surface.
     
  19. robstyle

    robstyle Master Member

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    The problem with that is silicone is stronger with flex. Although ive not used anything but the Powermold, im not too sure Composimold would hold up to rough surfaces. With silicone a good brush up layer can be done and backed with a various number of materials for a jacket. Im sort of at a loss to what you could do to back this stuff up with after any attempted brush up.
    Seems the trick to this stuff is a thicker mold = better strength as I can tear the Powermold apart when its semi thin. Theoretically this leaves any real undercuts out of the picture. If the current work project didnt just get pushed I would be able to try something with an undercut this weekend which is the actual reason why I bought the stuff. Since that part will be distressed to appear exploded, the Powermold should work ok.
     
  20. robstyle

    robstyle Master Member

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    Ive poured a part in the least heat curing material I ever use which is also what I use for mastering. At the same time ive poured the same material out of the same mix and cup into a silicone mold. This is one of the same parts ive used as a test for the Powermold.

    For the part safety ill let it sit until im certain the casting material is set. I know when I can pull it from the silicone which was 5 minutes ago. But, being the first pull from the Powermold ill let it set a little longer.

    On the record ive had a zero percent failure rate with the material being used for the part. This includes first pulls from fresh silicone molds and old molds that are falling apart.
     
  21. robstyle

    robstyle Master Member

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    Having pulled the part, this Powermold stuff is garbage. All detail is lost to the point a better part would be made of melted butter. This is the same type of issue that was plaguing the material I was helping a vendor develop. Its simply no good for any material that cures with the slightest of heat. For laughs ill post pictures up tomorrow. In the end Powermold has just been a huge waste of my time and a couple hundred grams of material.
     
  22. Wes R

    Wes R Legendary Member

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    Yeah i was put off when it said that anything over 130 degrees melts it. it's great for tiny parts or something that isn't resin but you can't do anything large in it.
     
  23. exoray

    exoray Master Member

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    On temperature resistant parts (even resin parts can tolerate 130° F) you might be able to let the entire poured mold simmer in a toaster oven at just above the 130°F melting point to degass and then remove from the oven to cool...

    Although I'm hardly seeing anywhere near the detail of silicone in the above examples...
     
  24. robstyle

    robstyle Master Member

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    Are you saying cook the mold just as its poured? I dont see that having any benefit what so ever as the material is thick like honey. Any air bubbles that are trapped regardless of any physical attempt to counter them just invites more bubble to the party. Cooking it seems like it would just end its reuse life.
    Regardless even the most air free mold made of this stuff will just plop out slugs as parts. The material I used is a very, very low heat cure material. I did tests with thicker and thinner parts and even the thinnest is a slug.

    Its so bad im even wondering is the original intent for Powermold which is to mold a rifle breach that will be busted up and distressed to appear exploded as a final part will even be acceptable for that!

    I dont see any use for this stuff in the prop molding and casting world. Ive had better luck in a pinch on the spot pushing a part into clay, clear coating the clay and pulling a part from that than I have had with this Powermold stuff. Ill save the stuff and bring it to the next prop party along with something simple to mold for anyone interested in failure.
     
  25. robstyle

    robstyle Master Member

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    Wes, I dont see ANYTHING that puts off heat being acceptable from this stuff. Not small parts, not thin parts, nothing. It just melts the details. Wait till you see the pics tomorrow. Youll swear its a bad mix or a torch has been taken to the parts. This is why I also poured the same mix of material into a silicone mold of the same part. Even with that pour being a dump, it blows the Powermold out of the room.
     
  26. exoray

    exoray Master Member

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    Yeah cooking the mold, the longer you keep it liquid the longer the bubbles have to rise, that is unless it's making new bubbles as it cooks? But as you said it has many other issues, so in the end it's likely a bust...
     
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  27. robstyle

    robstyle Master Member

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    Cooking it wont do anything. As mentioned the Powermold is like honey and traps any air bubbles regardless. I layed it on super thin and in layers in what looked to be an air free stream, even when inspecting the parts before layed in the rest yet the mold is still full of air bubbles. Cooking it would just do away with any possible reuse. This stuff is claimed to be reusable about 30 times with normal use. I dont even think those odds would pull a workable part out of any mold with this stuff.

    To the right is a part pulled from a silicone mold in raw form and the one that was molded. I stuck some clear tape over the numbers more or less to see how the Powermold would react to tape (no adverse effects), the left is the same silicone mold part that was a simple dump with the left over material from, the middle which is from the Powermold mold.

    Keep in mind the silicone mold has no air bubbles yet the silicone was not evacuated. The small voids you see on the left part is due to simply dumping the material into the mold as it was past its pour time while in the cup, yet it has the details. The part on the right has all the nuances and imperfections of the original as it has no paint on it. It was cast in color with metal powders. The one in the middle is from the Powermold and looks like its drawn in crayon. There are miniature air bubbles everywhere along with the immediately noticeable larger bubbles. Details are completely washed out and every edge is rounded to the point it has the appearance of being melted.

    Again, this is not bad material or improper use. The part on the left is the same batch and mix from a silicone mold that was used for the middle part in the Powermold. On top of that any further pulls from the Powermold would only be worse as much of the detail is now gone. This parts material is so low in heat it can cure in the palm of my hand. I dont know of anything that cures in cold for parts making. Imagine a quick cure plastic in this stuff!

    [​IMG]
     
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  28. Sandman0077

    Sandman0077 Sr Member

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    Well this has been a let down :(
     
  29. SPS

    SPS Active Member

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    Just a thought... What would happen if someone were to try to use this as a casting material? Say a free standing statue or something of the sort? Provided the detail needed to be captured wasn't too intricate, do you think this could be an interesting alternative to rigid foams, etc? Assuming it can be painted, would it hold its shape? Or would it break down relatively quickly?
     
  30. Ozymandius

    Ozymandius Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Well, technically, yes. But then you can also cast Jello in a mold, but you wouldn't want to put that on your shelf either.

    But more to the point, I think that you've completely misread the thread. This material isn't rigid at all, but soft. In fact, chemically speaking, it basically is jello. Just without the sugar and flavoring.
     
  31. robstyle

    robstyle Master Member

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    It would be horrible as casting material for any part needing a bubble free detailed surface. The castings show the issues inherent with the material. Just imagine now the casting is the poured part and you will immediately see what the end result would be if it were used to cast parts.
     
  32. Wes R

    Wes R Legendary Member

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    This is a shame as so many of us could really use a reusable casting material if for nothing else than fast one or two castings of a small part that isn't worth the cost of normal molding material.
     
  33. robstyle

    robstyle Master Member

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    Wes, if the part is a fitting surface and you have a cold cure or extremely low heat material it may work. But as ive stated from my own personal experience, ive had better luck doing a push mold out of clay and clear coating it for a quick and dirty mold than I have with any experience with this stuff.

    They sell a small tester of the stuff. I went all out and got the big tub. Maybe for poops and giggles ill try it on a coin project. Im making coins out of silver crayon so they can be melted to double as metal. Problem is melted crayon is hot and the mold needs to be dusted with a mix of metal powders to get the part usable right from the mold. I dont see it working but hell, ive got the time to try it tomorrow.
     
  34. Yodajammies

    Yodajammies Sr Member

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    And don't forget about shrinkage. (Insert "I was in the pool" pun here)

    I made a mold of a lathed part with this material and the cast I got from it was at least 5-8% smaller in volume than the master copy.

    This stuff is not worth the $.
     
  35. robstyle

    robstyle Master Member

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    I didnt forget about another attempt with this stuff but I cant risk the finish on the original part. Had it in hand ready to start the process but my gut feeling tells me to not attempt it.
     

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