Week 2) Plaster Casting

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Just another day at Seal Beach in California, bright yellow sand, blue sky with peaceful wide ocean. Winds blow over my ear, some other said they are cold, but for me the temperature is just right, so let’s get down to business !

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Material: Plaster ,bucket, shovel, sand, water andddddddd FOOD!

Starting: dig a hole with your shovel, about 10 inch deep. Put your part of body that you want to cast, recommend hand because it easier to remove your hand off the mole without make any major damaged to your “hole.”

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While waiting for the mole to set, it’s a good time to prepare the plaster mix. Strongly recommend 1 to 1 ratio or 1 part plaster and 2 part water for who ever dealing with plaster for the first time. Stir thing up for about 4 or 5 minutes, use a stick!

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Once achieved the slightly gooey texture, careful pour the mix to mole that you made earlier, let’s the plaster sit for about 30 minutes to 60 minutes, during this time you can do whatever you want, texting, eating, sleeping ….

After waiting, just want to make sure the cast is set, use your finger and touch the plaster, if the surface not change shape, just apply a little presser and it still not change shape, you are good to go.

Dig it up!

Just to be safe, use the shovel and dig a ring around the mole, recommend that the ring is about 2 inch away from  the mole and about the same depth. After finish digging, use your hands or a brush the remove the sand around the bottom of the move, at this stage if you do it right the mole will just fall to one side and will not effect your final cast. Once again use hand or a brush to remove the extra sand then lets the cast sit under the sun because it may look hard outside but the inside are still water and fairly easy to break.

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The experiment went pretty well regardless this is my first do something like this, it’s a ton of fun to have a class at a beach, doing engaging project with new people that I never meet before, it is a great opportunity to make friend.

About the practical side for this project … well it’s depend on your imaginary, I saw people use this technique for metal casting and it has been used a very long time ago. I personally view this as a “low budget 3D printer,” yes the finish project doesn’t look as smooth as a real 3D printer, but still that why I call this “budget” for a reason, for the entire project I speed less than 10$, while a real 3D printer cost way over 1000$ and the plaster cost like over 50$ as well. I am a civil engineer maybe I will use this technique for my future presentation or something that closer to daily life like try to cast it like a cup form, and paint if after it fully dry and BOOM! … an “artistic handmade pen holder.”

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