So, I've been remiss in not posting this sooner. I took the time last month to go up to the WoodenBoat School to take Sam Johnson's bronze casting class. I haven't done any casting of any sort since high school and wanted to brush up my antiquated skills and develop a few new tricks. From what I'd seen of his demonstrations at the WoodenBoat Show at Mystic and what I've heard from Lew Barrett and Jim Ledger, he's great to learn from - and I must say, that's what I found to be true.
On the first day, we discussed safety and basic methods for casting including all of the tools of the trade and how to make/acquire them:
We then moved on to casting a tool for loosening parts packed into the mold - a simple part (the y-shaped thing towards the right on the bench.)
After some simple parts, he upped the ante with some more difficult parts that required "coping down" For example, this forged jib ring:
Then the finished sand mold:
Pouring a little bronze:
...and the part out of the mold: