See the bronze art foundry process in action
Turning your ideas into reality at a bronze art foundry takes 8 steps…
Step 1: The Original Sculpture
Although oil based clay is the most commonly used medium for sculptors, water-based clay, stone, wood or any number of other materials can be used. Complex pieces are normally built over a metal armature.
Step 2: The Rubber Mold
A high quality silicone rubber mold with a fiberglass or plaster case allows us to make a hollow wax impression of the original sculpture.
Step 3: The Wax Positive
The wax model is made by pouring 3-5 coats of heated wax into the rubber mold, temperatures and timing are critical to make a wax that will be exactly the right thickness and will have all the detail of the original.
Step 4: Chasing the Wax
The wax chasing is broken into two parts. First the wax is carefully examined and any flaws are repaired. Next, wax rods are attached which will form pipes to allow bronze to flow in and air to escape when the wax is melted out of the shell.
Step 5: The Ceramic Shell
The ceramic shell is made by dipping the wax model in a slurry solution and coating it in sand every day for about five days. American Fine Arts Foundry uses a top quality commercial mixture formulated for strength and detail.
Step 6: Pouring the Bronze
After the wax is melted from the ceramic shells the bronze is heated in a furnace to about 2100 degrees while the shells are heated in a kiln to over 1200 degrees.
Step 7: Chasing the Metal
After the bronze is removed from the ceramic shell and cleaned, skilled artisans examine the piece, weld together any parts and perfect the piece using small hand tools to ensure that the finished piece is exactly like the original clay model.
Step 8: The Patina
Patinas on bronze sculpture are generally done by applying layers of oxidizing chemicals or metals to achieve various colors, patterns and effects. Our talented patina artists can offer a wide variety of choices and unique colors to satisfy your needs as an artist.