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Thread: Turtle trouble

  1. #1
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    Turtle trouble

    Hello all! I'm having some difficulty and I hope you can help me.

    I'm new to sculpting. For my first serious project I decided to make a life-size turtle in two parts- the upper shell (carapace) and everything else. The body will be hollow.

    I made a form of aluminum foil and original Sculpey that is the size and shape of the intended void inside the turtle's body and baked it. Then I coated the form with canola oil and laid about a 1/2" of clay (Super Sculpey tinted with brown Sculpey III) over it. After sculpting the carapace I baked it at about 190 F for a couple hours. My hope was that the carapace would just pop right off the form; instead, the two were fused together. I had to break the form and scrape out the remaining original Sculpey attached to the carapace; during this process the carapace split in several places.

    I want to try again. I will use some mesh to strengthen the carapace this time, but I don't know how to solve the problem with the form and piece sticking together. Should I make the form out of something else, use a different mold release, adjust the baking time/temperature, or just give up on the form idea?

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  2. #2
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    Hmmmmm, I really don't know, because I have never tried to make something hollow out of sculpy....that being said, lets see...I believe that the oil you used most likely ran away after it became hot. I think if it were me I would try again but this time I would form the sculpy shell and support it with small balls of sculpy, { maybe 3 or 4} and I would use vaseline where they meet the shell. They should pop right off after baking. Also, you could try baking for a shorter time and then remove the balls and then continue the bake...this will be a learning experience for you,{ that's what people say, when they don't really know the answer.} Wish I had a definitive answer for you.....


    Mah ' Crub

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  4. #3
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    Bake it at a lower temperature for longer, watching it. Also try using a mesh for the carapace to help it hold together.

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    You can cover the form with a layer of aluminum foil to separate it from the turtle, although every imperfection in the foil will show up.

    Or you can make something like a lost wax casting, where the form is sculpted from something that will melt at high heat, like wax or cheap modeling clay, although I haven't a clue whether or not it will react with the sculpey in a bad way. Once the turtle is baked hard you can either pour the form out or let it cool and scoop it out. That way you don't need to worry about draft angles.

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    Thanks guys! I will put some of your suggestions to the test this weekend and let you know how it worked out.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mah ' Crub View Post
    { maybe 3 or 4} and I would use vaseline where they meet the shell. They should pop right off after baking.
    Mah ' Crub

    NONONO!!!!

    Vaseline is used to FUSE sculpy. If you ever want it to stick better to itself slide a thin layer of vaseline between the parts. seriously.

    Sculpey usage technique - Shiflett Brothers Sculpting Forum The 'secret' to bonding each layer is using a little vaseline to bond the fresh to the baked. Sculpey can be baked many times over. ...

    I would foil between the mold and the shell. sculpy doesn't stick to it well at all.
    P

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