I have finished my tests on suitability of a ceramic foundation mold.
The test was quite successful. Melted beeswax can be poured, molded
and easily released from a ceramic mold fired to the bisque stage. At
this stage the ceramics are porous and retain moisture much like a
When the ceramic plates are soaked in water for a few minutes, water
is retained within the ceramic structure. The surface of the plates
are not wet. This water acts as a super release agent and also cools
Molten wax is poured onto the bottom ceramic mold and then the upper
part of the mold is placed on top of the wax. Heat from the wax is
readily transferred into the water within the mold and transferred to
the outside surfaces of the mold.
After about 30 to 45 seconds the upper part of the mold can be very
easily removed without any wax adhering or sticking to the mold. The
molded wax foundation can then be easily removed by simply grabbing a
corner and pulling it up without any sticking or adhering. None!
I stopped the test after molding about 8 sheets of foundation so I
don't know how many could be molded before more water would need to
be brushed or sprayed on the mold.
I estimate that a person familiar with pottery could make a very
decent mold for less than $10. If you had a potter make one it should
cost less than $50. Any student in a high school ceramics class could
Next Post, some thoughts on construction.
[This message has been edited by BWrangler (edited March 23, 2003).]