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Thread: Small Scale Bronze Csting for Fun (but no profit) in Anacortes

  1. #1
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    Default Small Scale Bronze Csting for Fun (but no profit) in Anacortes

    A number of us convened at Emerald Marine in Anacortes for a day of bronze casting some boat hardware, lead by the caliph of the Salish Sea sail and oar jihad, James McMullen.

    Some of us were there to observe this interesting process, some were there to cast their own parts to take away and some of us came to observe and became enamoured of the process, saw a cool pattern and became part of the process. Count me among the latter. Which is why I didn't take as many pictures as I intended, but I did grab a couple of videos.

    Here's one that shows pouring the bronze into the moulds:

    Alex

    A man in an open shirt, sat gazing out to sea; A young man, a hale man, and I wished that I were he and that the things that I loved were as they used to be
    - Geoffrey Holdsworth

    http://www.alexzimmerman.ca

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Small Scale Bronze Casting for Fun (but no profit) in Anacortes

    Here is a video of the next step in the process, breaking the casting out of the moulds:




    There was a bunch of other people there taking pictures. Here's hoping some of them will chime in with their images and observations.

    Thanks to James for organizing this and generously sharing his expertise, time and shop space. It was a fun day and some of us took home some cool bronze bits and bobs.
    Alex

    A man in an open shirt, sat gazing out to sea; A young man, a hale man, and I wished that I were he and that the things that I loved were as they used to be
    - Geoffrey Holdsworth

    http://www.alexzimmerman.ca

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Small Scale Bronze Csting for Fun (but no profit) in Anacortes

    Apologies for the the spelling error in the title. Can't see any way to correct it
    Alex

    A man in an open shirt, sat gazing out to sea; A young man, a hale man, and I wished that I were he and that the things that I loved were as they used to be
    - Geoffrey Holdsworth

    http://www.alexzimmerman.ca

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Small Scale Bronze Csting for Fun (but no profit) in Anacortes

    That was a great time indeed.

    Many thanks to Grand Wizard McMullen for opening his shop to all of us. I took many pictures, hopefully they'll get online soon and posted here.
    Quote Originally Posted by Yeadon View Post
    Double-enders are optimistic.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Small Scale Bronze Csting for Fun (but no profit) in Anacortes

    What fun. Just sorry I didn't have any molds so I could come up and play.
    Gerard>
    Langley, WA

    Don't believe Republican lies.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Small Scale Bronze Csting for Fun (but no profit) in Anacortes

    Boatbuilders get to play with the best toys! I remember seeing Richard Remsen's article about bronze casting in WB 130, and wanting to try it then, too. Great vid, thanks AJZimm.
    Jack.

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    Default Re: Small Scale Bronze Csting for Fun (but no profit) in Anacortes

    You should have come anyway Gerrard! I did! James had plenty of patterns, and besides, there was plenty to do. Plus I got to meet a bunch of neat boat people. I especially liked the older guy with the beard (which was almost everyone )

    I also got a bunch if pics and videos. I'll get them up here soon.
    There's the plan, then there's what actually happens.

    Ben Sebens, RN

    15' Welsford Navigator Inconceivable
    16' W. Simmons Mattinicus double ender ​Matty

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Small Scale Bronze Csting for Fun (but no profit) in Anacortes

    Here are some pics.


    Flaming metal!! I believe this became a gudgeon for a Caledonia Yawl.




    The Crucible. I believe James said its an 11 lb crucible. Its made of graphite, like pencil lead.




    The Furnace, made out of a 5 gallon bucket. Its important to heat the metal a bit first, to make sure its completely dry.




    Some custom flat hinges that James cast for some project.





    Here's the group. It was a great day, with lots of neat people.

    From what I remember, Forum members in attendance were James McMullen, Yeadon (Tim), AJZimm (Alex zimmerman), bott (Eric Bott), Jamie Orr, andyk (Andy McKonkey (sp?)), And probably a few others I didn't catch.






    Many thanks to James for hosting the event!
    There's the plan, then there's what actually happens.

    Ben Sebens, RN

    15' Welsford Navigator Inconceivable
    16' W. Simmons Mattinicus double ender ​Matty

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Small Scale Bronze Csting for Fun (but no profit) in Anacortes

    Darned sorry to have missed the show, would have been happy to help (well, learn actually)
    Next time I dearly hope. Too bad I missed you Alex, and everybody else.
    Cheers
    eric

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Small Scale Bronze Csting for Fun (but no profit) in Anacortes

    More pictures! I'll try to cover other areas that Ben didn't already get.

    The whole set is here.

    The shop... you can see the casting setup on the left.




    James... confusing everyone:



    Plopping metal into the inferno:



    Tim, pouring hardware:




    Quote Originally Posted by Yeadon View Post
    Double-enders are optimistic.

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Small Scale Bronze Csting for Fun (but no profit) in Anacortes

    Also, there were a number of people from far out of town trying to get some specific hardware case... sense the finish of the parts right out of the mold is pretty rough, they require much cleanup on sanders and bandsaws.

    For rudder hardware, this also means turning down the pintle pins to fit just so in the gudgeon's also-somewhat-precisely drilled hole.

    Sense I was one of the few other than James with experience with lathe work, I set to get some of the hardware prepped for everyone.

    First boring centering holes after chucking up the cast pin in the lathe:



    Then making a second centering hole... then lots of magic (didn't get many pictures of these middle parts, but know that they would have looked amazing)... aaaaand viola! Shiny metal surrounded by smaller flecks of metal.

    Quote Originally Posted by Yeadon View Post
    Double-enders are optimistic.

  12. #12
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    Default Re: Small Scale Bronze Csting for Fun (but no profit) in Anacortes

    I actually did not do any casting. I instead borrowed James' ample vices (no, not black tar heroin) and bent up a mast traveler for my Caledonia Yawl, Gnosis.

    Progress pictures:










    Quote Originally Posted by Yeadon View Post
    Double-enders are optimistic.

  13. #13
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    Default Re: Small Scale Bronze Csting for Fun (but no profit) in Anacortes

    More of my silent tutorial:







    Quote Originally Posted by Yeadon View Post
    Double-enders are optimistic.

  14. #14
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    Default Re: Small Scale Bronze Csting for Fun (but no profit) in Anacortes

    Great silent tutorial.
    Quote Originally Posted by James McMullen View Post
    Yeadon is right, of course.

  15. #15
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    Default Re: Small Scale Bronze Csting for Fun (but no profit) in Anacortes

    Hah! That second pic in #13 looks like it is from an Iron Man movie...
    Gerard>
    Langley, WA

    Don't believe Republican lies.

  16. #16
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    Default Re: Small Scale Bronze Csting for Fun (but no profit) in Anacortes

    Casting was fun. Nobody got burned down or anything. That doesn't mean it isn't kinda really totally dangerous.

    If this looks like fun to you and you'd like to try it out for yourself, I totally recommend Sam Johnson's class on Bronze Casting that he teaches at places like the Wooden Boat School and the Columbia River Maritime Museum. I learned what I know from Sam, including making all my foundry gear.

  17. #17
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    Default Re: Small Scale Bronze Csting for Fun (but no profit) in Anacortes

    Quote Originally Posted by James McMullen View Post
    Casting was fun. Nobody got burned down or anything. That doesn't mean it isn't kinda really totally dangerous.
    Its ok, I caught my arm on something early on, which was more annoying than painful, but it did bleed. So the Blood was paid early on, negating the need for more radical sacrifice. Every project requires blood.



    Finally got some videos uploaded.

    There's the plan, then there's what actually happens.

    Ben Sebens, RN

    15' Welsford Navigator Inconceivable
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  18. #18
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    Default Re: Small Scale Bronze Csting for Fun (but no profit) in Anacortes

    And another.

    There's the plan, then there's what actually happens.

    Ben Sebens, RN

    15' Welsford Navigator Inconceivable
    16' W. Simmons Mattinicus double ender ​Matty

  19. #19
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    Default Re: Small Scale Bronze Csting for Fun (but no profit) in Anacortes

    Sorry I did not hear of it sooner....I probably could not have made it over there, but I have a couple of original LFherreshoff patterns and would like one day to make a new gaff runner.....

  20. #20
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    Default Re: Small Scale Bronze Csting for Fun (but no profit) in Anacortes

    that weasel yeadon just got a new video camera...yet I see nothing from him...must be because he is tweaking it to be just so. (?)

  21. #21
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    Default Re: Small Scale Bronze Csting for Fun (but no profit) in Anacortes

    Yeadon was working hard that day, doing something useful. He's got no time to waste just for entertaining the likes of you. You had your chance to see it all unfold in real time, Ford, and then you blew it. Is there no end to the villainy you're capable of?

    Simply disgraceful. We even had a little bit of beer left over.

    A little bit.

  22. #22
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    Default Re: Small Scale Bronze Csting for Fun (but no profit) in Anacortes

    Quote Originally Posted by James McMullen View Post
    We even had a little bit of beer left over.

    A little bit.
    Not while there's still breath in my lungs!
    Quote Originally Posted by Yeadon View Post
    Double-enders are optimistic.

  23. #23
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    Default Re: Small Scale Bronze Csting for Fun (but no profit) in Anacortes

    I wish I didn't live 1.5 states away.

  24. #24
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    Default Re: Small Scale Bronze Csting for Fun (but no profit) in Anacortes

    James, tell us about your furnace.
    -Jim

    Sucker for a pretty face.
    1934 27' Blanchard Cuiser ~ Amazon, Ex. Emalu
    19'6" Caledonia Yawl ~ Sparrow

    Getting into trouble one board at a time.

  25. #25
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    Default Re: Small Scale Bronze Csting for Fun (but no profit) in Anacortes

    Here's a very good forum specifically about casting and patternmaking, good info on furnace construction, burners and refractories.
    http://www.alloyavenue.com/vb/forum.php
    '' You ain't gonna learn what you don't want to know. ''
    Grateful Dead

  26. #26
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    Default Re: Small Scale Bronze Csting for Fun (but no profit) in Anacortes

    Quote Originally Posted by PeterSibley View Post
    Here's a very good forum specifically about casting and patternmaking, good info on furnace construction, burners and refractories.
    http://www.alloyavenue.com/vb/forum.php
    and I've wasted many hours there....
    -Jim

    Sucker for a pretty face.
    1934 27' Blanchard Cuiser ~ Amazon, Ex. Emalu
    19'6" Caledonia Yawl ~ Sparrow

    Getting into trouble one board at a time.

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