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Thread: Sculpey Firm and silicone: how to get a faultless surface?

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    Sculpey Firm and silicone: how to get a faultless surface?

    I want to make 1-piece silicone moulds of my latest small sculptures. They're made with pure Sculpey Firm, so they've got that slightly sandy surface to them after baking. They were very smooth prior to baking, smoothed well with fingers/shapers and alcohol/paintbrush.

    Because of the size of the pieces - only slightly bigger than a 2p coin - I have limited ability to sand the surfaces. I want my reproductions to be completely smooth, so I'd like to get that glassy appearance in the mould surface if possible, but I don't want to accidentally round off the edges which are intended to be sharp or eliminate fine details.

    I've seen Seal Dit, but it looks a little gloopy. Is this the best thing to use, or are there better techniques using paint to fill any tiny marks and achieve a faultless, glossy mould?

    Thanks for any help you can give me!

    Last edited by Doubleclick; April 16th, 2012 at 05:36 PM. Reason: adding info about alcohol
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    Thin layer of glossy paint or lacquer applied by airbrush ? Do not know any better solution.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Doubleclick View Post
    I've seen Seal Dit, but it looks a little gloopy. Is this the best thing to use, or are there better techniques using paint to fill any tiny marks and achieve a faultless, glossy mould?

    Thanks for any help you can give me!

    You have pits/scratches in the surface? I've not done too much that small. But I usually use the red "bondo filler putty for automobiles" from walmart. it is quick dying and it is soft when dry (relative to sculpy). The reason you want this is because when you sand it, it sands the putty first and foremost rather than the sculpy. you can usually get a nice blend without sanding any of the sculpy down at all! Hit it with a spray primer like pokrad said and it's there forever.

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    If it's a trivial molding job, you could make a mold, cast victory brown sculpture wax or (green/blue/purple jeweler's wax) in it, and then you'd have wax duplicates.

    Chase and polish the wax cast, and then use that as the master for a new mold.

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    Quote Originally Posted by pokrad View Post
    Thin layer of glossy paint or lacquer applied by airbrush ? Do not know any better solution.
    Thanks.

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    Quote Originally Posted by philofmars View Post
    You have pits/scratches in the surface? I've not done too much that small. But I usually use the red "bondo filler putty for automobiles" from walmart. it is quick dying and it is soft when dry (relative to sculpy). The reason you want this is because when you sand it, it sands the putty first and foremost rather than the sculpy. you can usually get a nice blend without sanding any of the sculpy down at all! Hit it with a spray primer like pokrad said and it's there forever.
    It's not so much a problem of pits as texture. Before the model is baked, it looks extremely smooth and exactly the way I want it, but after baking you can see a miniscule uneveness: the form is a very slightly puffier version of its original shape, and the surface is now stone-like rather than plastic-like. I'm sure the surface wouldn't bother me at all if I was making larger models, but with such tiny objects they will be viewed up close.

    I had banked on the silicone not being fine enough to pick up these tiny details, but I've seen some tutorials which warn that this isn't the case and every little grain and ripple will be there too. I might be worrying about nothing of course, but I have to be very careful about this since I cannot afford to experiment right now - I'm trying to do everything I can to make sure this works first time, if possible.

    Good tip on that filler! Milliput 2-part epoxy putty is dilutable, and air-dries, so I'll give that a try and then use a primer. Thank you very much!

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