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Mould for making your own kerbstones? Mould Making Project


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Quincy
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 04, 2006 8:22 am    Post subject: Mould for making your own kerbstones? Mould Making Project Reply with quote

Hi all,

I have been looking for a particular type of kerb stone for the past couple of years with no such luck. I have one sample I got abroad several years ago and this is exactly what I want in my garden. Only problem is I need about 150 of them. I have made lots of enquiries but have not been able to get them here in Ireland. The cost of having them shipped over from abroad is prohibitive. I have approached several concrete products businesses and they were willing to make up a mould, but it would have been cheaper to ship them in! (Thats the celtic tiger still growling!)
So, next plan, using the one kerb stone I have, Make several moulds off it and cast my own. I need to know what would be the best material to make a mould though. latex, rubber, plaster etc etc. The kerb stone I have is about 16 inches long, about 5 inches wide and for intents and purposes, looks like 9 narrow rocks stacked upright on their ends. When the kerb stones are laid end to end, you would think it is all small individual stones, not modular 16in kerb stones.
I have been experimenting a bit with concrete colouring using different mixes of powder and liquids so I am pretty close to having the colour blends right. There is a lot of detail on the kerb stone that, i'd like to preserve.

So, My question is, Is there somewhere I can buy the raw materials I need to make my own moulds?
I have done a google search but have found lots of kinky sites relating to rubber and latex jump suits! not quite my style!!!

Q


Last edited by Quincy on Tue May 01, 2007 8:19 pm; edited 1 time in total
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volga
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 04, 2006 9:01 am    Post subject: Information / How to Mould for making your own kerbstones Reply with quote

Here is a non kinky link to check out Quincy.
http://www.sculptor-iangb.com/mould.htm
and an interesting article below......

Mould Making With Latex
by Andy Slater
Craft shops are able to supply Latex as a pre-vulcanised emulsion that will air dry and can be used to make moulds in which wax, plaster or resin parts can be cast.
The advantage of latex moulds is that they are very elastic and can therefore be used to cast parts with significant undercuts. This elasticity can also be a down side as it can result in the mould deforming under the weight of the casting material however this can be overcome with the use of additional support casing as described later.
Making a Master
The first step is of course to obtain a master from which the mould will be created. There are a range of suitable materials and the fact that the latex dries in air and does not generate heat while setting is the reason for this flexibility. The porosity of the master is a factor that will result in one of two methods being used to produce the mould. These are the 'dipping' and the 'paint on' method and will be described later.
For sculpted pieces, plaster is probably the ideal medium as its porosity draws moisture from the latex allowing the dipping method to be employed for making the mould. Clay is another possibility for dipping but should be allowed to dry out or be fired as wet clay will prevent the latex from drying. Plasticene can also be used if the paint on method is employed however the interaction between plasticene and latex will result in a mould with a reduced working life.
Non-porous materials like wax and polyester resin can be used as masters if the paint on method is employed.
The Dipping Method
This needs to be done with a porous master which is simply dipped into the liquid latex. The porosity draws moisture from the latex causing it to thicken on the surface. Unfortunately, as this happens, air bubbles are formed in the latex. To overcome this, remove the master from the latex after a few seconds and use an old brush the stipple the surface and thus burst the bubbles. As this is done the latex will turn into a paste which will prevent further air from escaping. The master can now go back into the liquid latex for 15-20 minutes by which time a sufficiently thick coating should have formed.
Remove the master from the liquid latex and leave it to dry for a few hours before removing the mould as described later.
The Paint On Method
The dipping method will not work with non-porous masters so instead the latex is painted onto its surface with an old brush. An additional problem is that the thin liquid latex will tend to run off the non-porous master and several coats will need to be applied in order to build up the required thickness with the latex being left to dry a little between coats.
The author has found that this process can be made less frustrating by pouring some latex into a small dish and allowing it to begin to thicken BEFORE painting it onto the master. The author is unable to comment on whether this affects the life of the mould in any way as he has only ever wanted to do small numbers of casting from moulds made in this way.
An 'optional extra' is latex thickener which can be added to the latex. Addition of thickener at the correct rate (as specified on the bottle) should not affect the life of the mould however excessive use can result in a rigid and brittle mould.
Removing the master from the mould
Before removing the mould you should apply talcum powder or washing up liquid to the outside of the mould to prevent the latex from sticking to itself. The mould can then be washed, dried and again dusted with talcum powder.
Making an external support case
If the mould is small it will be possible to use it for casting without any external support. Large moulds however will tend to be distorted by the weight of the casting material and an external support should be made.
It has been suggested that this should be done before the removal of the master from the mould however the author prefers to remove and check the quality of the mould before proceeding. The master must of course be reinserted into the mould around which the support is to be made.
The authors preferred method is to use plaster reinforced with jute scrim although glassfibre can also be employed. There is no need to use a release agent with these materials and the latex. However, an obvious requirement of this support is that it should be possible to remove it and it will therefore need to be made in two or more pieces.
Begin by deciding how many pieces the support should split into and where it is appropriate for the splits to occur. For simplicity, we will assume that a 2 piece support case is appropriate. Modelling clay or plasticine can now be rolled out and cut into strips before being applied as shuttering along the line where the support case it to split. Plaster and scrim is now applied to one half of the mould op to the clay wall and left to dry.
When dry, the clay wall is removed. Several indentations should be made in the newly exposed edge to enable the pieces of the finished support case to be matched up easily. Obviously these indentations should not be so deep or so angular that they will cause problems in separating the pieces and the edge of a small coin can be usefully employed to make appropriate dome shaped indentations.
Although it was not necessary to use a release agent between the latex and the plaster it is essential that it be used between the two halves of plaster. For this purpose the edge of casing can be painted with varnish or shellac to make it non-porous. Alternatively a coating of vaseline or washing up liquid can be applied.
The second half of the casing can now be created with more plaster and scrim.
When the whole of the casing is dry it can be carefully removed and the master removed from the inner latex mould.
Note that when casting, it is usually appropriate to put some of the casting material into the latex mould and tease it in the usual way (to release bubbles from the casting material), BEFORE it is encased in the support structure. The latex mould is then encased in the support casting with string or sticky tape bound around the outside to hold the casing together while the casting process is completed.
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Chris_IE
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 04, 2006 7:39 pm    Post subject: Mould Making goodies Reply with quote

Glassfibre and Resin Supplies (www.grs.ie) in Midleton carry a range of mould making stuff. I've never bought any of it but I have dealt with them for buying some glass cloth and resin for surfboard repairs. They're very helpful.
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paulanthony
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 11, 2006 10:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

What is it exactly your looking for Quincy? What dimensions etc?
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Quincy
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 11, 2006 11:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Chris, You've given me exactly what I need, I had a look at the site you offered and they offer latex in 5ltr tubs @ €25 which is about right for what I need. THANKS for that!
paul, I hope to make a box out of 3/4" plywood, big enough to put my kerb stone into with an inch or so clearance all around. If i put the stone in it and pour the latex over it (after covering the stone with a release agent). After a bit, once i pull the stone from the latex, I hope to have a mould i can use.

Thanks to all for advice!
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squire1
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 18, 2006 3:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Quincy, I've just read through your thread and was windering how you got on.

How do you expect the laytex mould to support itself while you fill it with cement? I would also expect that you will have difficulty getting the cement into the small details in the mould. Have you considered how you are going to vibrate the mould/cement to get it to fill the mould?
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Quincy
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 18, 2006 11:58 pm    Post subject: how to make a vibrating table Reply with quote

Moving along nicely squire. I went to GRS in midleton and sure enough they had a range of mould making materials. I explained to the owner of the business what I was up to and he spent quite a bit of time explaining the different mould making materials, latex and various rubber materials. I did not go for latex as I was advised it was too soft and would not last. He gave me 2kg liquid rubber and activator to use and complete advice on what to do. excellent lads there. I will be making a wooden box just slightly bigger than the kerb stone, drop in the kerb stone and fill it to the top with the rubber. The plywood will hold the shape, on top of that, the rubber he gave me is a lot firmer than i would have chosen but I've been assured its the same stuff the pros use.
I was only experimenting with a vibrating setup this eve! I fixed an old drill to the bottom of a piece of 2ft square plywood. in its chuck i fitted a bolt with an off set counter weight about 50g of 1/4 plate steel. I have this sitting on top of an old tyre. I put a bucket, half filled with water on top of this and it rattles the hell out of it so it should be interesting what'll happen with concrete. The drill has variable speed trigger so that will allow a bit of adjustment with the vibration. I may need to fix the plywood to the tyre too, thats a project in development though! will give it a shot this coming weekend hopefully.
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squire1
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 19, 2006 7:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hay, you made your own vibrating table. Cool

I remember trying to source one of these for a similar project a number of years ago and found it very difficult to get one. If your set up does not work out let me know and i see if I can pull out the old file to see where I eventually hired it. I'm sure you will be fine if you can get the frequency high enough and the amplitude low enough.

Are you only going to make one mould? Would it be more efficient to make up five or six so that you can make the kerbs in batches?

Let me know how you get on. Interesting project.
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foamcutter
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 30, 2006 7:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Quincy,

just wondering how you got on with your moulding project. Is it still a work in progress or did you get it completed?

I'd be interested to know how the moulding products went for you.

Cheers
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Quincy
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 31, 2006 9:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Still a work in progress im afraid. Not putting full effort into it at the moment with work commitments but the latest update is that I made the rubber mould which works fine, no probs there. Easy product to use and gives a first rate finish. Very easy to release the kerb stone too and faithfully reproduces the original, down to the scratches. My problems found to date are getting the concrete mix and the vibrations right. I made 3 kerb stones but the first one was full of bubbles, looked rotten. The second, I slowed the drill down a bit less vibrations and the results were a bit better. There wasn't enough movement in the old tyre so I changed to using an old inner tube which works a whole lot better. The 3rd kerb stone is relatively bubble free.
Now all I need to do is work on the colour blends a bit more. I bought some fine white sand and plan to get some white cement this coming weekend to see if I can get better results with the colouring (the dark brown sand and grey cement I was using were't giving me the colour tones I wanted).
Thats it so far i'm afraid, wish I had more to offer but unfortunately getting free time to work on it is my problem. Sad
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foamcutter
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 31, 2006 7:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Quincy for the update.

The only moulding l have done is with a plaster mix, so i'm no help with your concrete problems. What product did you actually use for getting the rubber mould and was it easy to form?

Trying to get some spare time especially now with the short evenings is nearly impossible. Good luck anyhow.
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Quincy
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 23, 2007 12:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hello all... Been a while since I posted here... Just wanted to give an update.

I made 75 of these kerb stones using the moulds I made myself. They worked out a treat. The vibrating table I used an inner tube fully inflated on top of which I had the table to place the moulds (I made a second mould for increased productivity)...
1 bucket of concrete mix made every 2 days filled both moulds, became a ritual for a few weeks to go into the workshop and do it but it was worth it... almost. I made 75 kerb stones for about 80 euro altogether (not including my time) I used less than 1 ton of sand, about 7 bags of white cement, colouring powder, the materials for the moulds and a few other bits n bobs.
The only problem is MY WIFE DOESNT LIKE THEM!!! Now that they were down... TYPICAL...

I had no problem selling them on to my neighbour who loved them... Made a profit so all ends well I guess... Now.... looking at a simpler kerb stone to satisfy my beloved wife... I will probably make them too as I have the technique figured out now.


Live and learn... lol, Laughing


Quincy
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foamcutter
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 23, 2007 2:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Any chance of a photo of the kerbstones and vibrating table, so we can see the results of your hard work?

TIA
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Quincy
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PostPosted: Tue May 01, 2007 7:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Heres a couple of pics of my vibrating table, told you it wasnt fancy...lol

An old inner tube, a piece of ply wood and an old drill


I just put a bucket of water on the table to illustrate the vibrations. When you have cement in a mould all you get is bubbles gently popping on the surface.


Drill strapped to the bottom of the table with 'easy straps'


A closeup of the offset weight (a piece of 1/4 plate bolted n welded.) The piece of wood above the weight is to stop the weight chewing its way into the inner tybe... dont ask me how i know this...


Maybe iI should approach B&Q with my contraption, sell em for 100 euro a pop...lol




Quincy
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Quincy
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PostPosted: Tue May 01, 2007 8:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

And the infamous kerb stone....





Sorry I dont have a pic of the moulds, my brother has them.

I'll be making a new mould for the new "wife approved kerbstone" this coming weekend, will post pics of that once I make it up.

Will do a step by step piece with pics on "how to make rubber moulds" and post it here for those that are interested in concrete mould casting...

Quincy


Last edited by Quincy on Tue May 01, 2007 8:30 pm; edited 1 time in total
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