From !!!bmyers@ionet.net Mon Aug 03 04:23:54 1998

Newsgroups: alt.slack

Subject: Re: Weasels Ripped My Flesh

From: !!!bmyers@ionet.net (TarlaStar)

Date: Mon, 03 Aug 1998 11:23:54 GMT

 

"Rev. Random the Other" <cmcjp02@nt.com> wrote:

<snip great rant and start of interesting story>

 

>In the McDonalds. I don't frequent fast

>food places, and still have not recovered from my last visit to

>Arbys, but I had to take a shit. Inside, a glass display case with

>an original Fredric Remington bronze. Original edition, not a lost

>wax reproduction, tho there is not a thing wrong with the repro's.

>Original Remington. In Smithfield, in the McDonalds. SLACK!

 

Just a couple of points here, Rev. 1) most bronzes are made using the

"lost wax" method. The original run from the original molds were also

made with lost wax. (I'd be happy to describe the entire process, if

you like.) Later runs would have been made from molds taken from the

first run bronzes instead of the actual clay piece. 2) I'm also

curious to know how you could tell that it was from the original run

if it was inside a display case?

 

 

 

 

From bbombere@erols.com Mon Aug 03 09:28:56 1998

Newsgroups: alt.slack

Subject: Re: Weasels Ripped My Flesh

From: "=?iso-8859-1?Q?K=F6nig=20Preu=DFe?=, GmbH" <bbombere@erols.com>

Date: Mon, 03 Aug 1998 12:28:56 -0400

 

 

 

TarlaStar wrote:

 

> "Rev. Random the Other" <cmcjp02@nt.com> wrote:

> <snip great rant and start of interesting story>

>

> >In the McDonalds. I don't frequent fast

> >food places, and still have not recovered from my last visit to

> >Arbys, but I had to take a shit. Inside, a glass display case with

> >an original Fredric Remington bronze. Original edition, not a lost

> >wax reproduction, tho there is not a thing wrong with the repro's.

> >Original Remington. In Smithfield, in the McDonalds. SLACK!

>

> Just a couple of points here, Rev. 1) most bronzes are made using the

> "lost wax" method. The original run from the original molds were also

> made with lost wax. (I'd be happy to describe the entire process, if

> you like.) Later runs would have been made from molds taken from the

> first run bronzes instead of the actual clay piece. 2) I'm also

> curious to know how you could tell that it was from the original run

> if it was inside a display case?

 

Where do you find lost wax?

 

 

From charliec@cybernex.net Tue Aug 04 03:16:31 1998

Newsgroups: alt.slack

Subject: Re: Weasels Ripped My Flesh

From: TheCharlie <charliec@cybernex.net>

Date: Tue, 4 Aug 1998 10:16:31 GMT

 

König Preuße, GmbH wrote:

>

> TarlaStar wrote:

>

> > "Rev. Random the Other" <cmcjp02@nt.com> wrote:

> > <snip great rant and start of interesting story>

> >

> > >In the McDonalds. I don't frequent fast

> > >food places, and still have not recovered from my last visit to

> > >Arbys, but I had to take a shit. Inside, a glass display case with

> > >an original Fredric Remington bronze. Original edition, not a lost

> > >wax reproduction, tho there is not a thing wrong with the repro's.

> > >Original Remington. In Smithfield, in the McDonalds. SLACK!

> >

> > Just a couple of points here, Rev. 1) most bronzes are made using the

> > "lost wax" method. The original run from the original molds were also

> > made with lost wax. (I'd be happy to describe the entire process, if

> > you like.) Later runs would have been made from molds taken from the

> > first run bronzes instead of the actual clay piece. 2) I'm also

> > curious to know how you could tell that it was from the original run

> > if it was inside a display case?

>

> Where do you find lost wax?

 

You don't, dummy.. that's why they call it 'lost' ..

 

From reverand@mindspring.com Wed Aug 05 10:31:53 1998

Newsgroups: alt.slack

Subject: Re: Weasels Ripped My Flesh

From: reverand@mindspring.com (Rev. Random the Other)

Date: Wed, 05 Aug 1998 17:31:53 GMT

 

!!!bmyers@ionet.net (TarlaStar) wrote:

 

>"Rev. Random the Other" <cmcjp02@nt.com> wrote:

>>Original Remington. In Smithfield, in the McDonalds. SLACK!

>

>Just a couple of points here, Rev. 1) most bronzes are made using the

>"lost wax" method. The original run from the original molds were also

>made with lost wax. (I'd be happy to describe the entire process, if

>you like.) Later runs would have been made from molds taken from the

>first run bronzes instead of the actual clay piece. 2) I'm also

>curious to know how you could tell that it was from the original run

>if it was inside a display case?

 

 

2) Yeah, I asked myself that same question in a big long paragraph

that I cut from the story. I mean, that are the credentials needed for

a curatorship at a McDonalds? Is a program offered at Ronald U?

Is it a rigorous program, and do they have access to the latest

verification technologies? Or what if they decided to put such

knowledge to evil purposes, to counterfeit, perhaps using acetylene to

alter the signature on a mere reproduction?

 

I wrote how the display case was actually glass and polished oak, the

centerpiece of the museum. The original franchise owner was some

nutcase redneck collector, collecting objects "from 1879-1909". The

objects, or the collecting? It wasn't clear. I talked about the

fifteen thousand dollar security system, with alarms and laser beams

and two video cameras dedicated to the display case, with a third, at

least, hidden somewhere behind me, judging from the way the hair on my

neck was reacting. I talked about Pulling the Wool. Is my belief in

the veracity of the sculpture in the Chicago museum on any sounder

ground? My thoughts were bouncing around all over everywhere, which is

why I cut it. I won't try to reproduce it now, because I'm on break

and gotta run, and because I'm too excited about 1). All I know is

that behind that perfectly undistinguished McDonalds facad, there was

an art museum on the very DAY that I needed such a Slacklift. Whoda

thunk it.

 

 

1) I'd be WAY interested in the details. Pammy and me were talking

about how little we knew about the subject just two weeks ago. My

cluelessness is embarasing. You gonna have to go REAL slow.

 

I've always heard "Lost Wax Reproduction" used as a phrase, kinda like

"Ethnic Albanians". This is gonna be great.

 

What little background I have is limited to working with a steel

foundry; sandcasting using the "Lost Styrafoam" method, I guess. I

don't expect that Wax could stand up to the sand pounding...I can also

work the phase-change diagrams; spectify the needs in terms of

strength and surface/depth hardness (or specify the acceptable

deformation under load) and eventually I can work out the %

carbon/alloy, the heating and quenching cycles and hold times needed

to achieve the required characteristics. Oh, and what material is

needed for the quench (Did I say liquid sodium? Opps, I meant lead.)

Martinsite, pearlite, ferrite. I grew up in Mill Country. US steel,

Inland Steel. Bethleham. Rolling mill, Sheet mill, Bar mill. You'd

think I would have some foggy clue as to bronze art, but nope.

 

So my questions are many:

 

1) Let's start with the actual original work. Neither Pam nor me knew

how the original was done. Does one start with a big block of bronze

and cut away everything that doesn't look like the statue? What tool

is used to do this? Yes, THAT dumb. You mentioned "The actual clay

piece." I suspect that this answers it.

 

2) Then a mold is made for a limited run. What material is the mold

made from? What material WAS it made from before, say, Stainless was

around? Or whatever.

 

2a) How is this done? The making of the mold? How is it formed

around the intricate bits, like the guns in the air in the Remington?

No sand pounding, right? Are there seams in the final product that

need to be sanded down?

 

3) Ok, we got a mold. It can be reused. Does it split in half? Do the

lines of the original blur with successive copies? What does it look

like, physically?

 

4) Does the sculptor need to determine the phase state characteristics

of the bronze prior to starting? Do you decide that it needs to have a

certain toughness and strength characteristics, and so know what alloy

is needed? Or is bronze work re-fired afterwords, or is this even

needed? Is bronze a standard percentage alloy, always the same? No

wait, there is tin bronze, aluminum bronze, and silicon bronze, so no,

it's not standard. Does the sculptor specify up front what alloy is

needed?

 

5) Does the sculptor make the alloy at the time of the pour? What kind

of foundry would a Remington or a Rodin have used? What is used in a

modern studio? What does it look like, how is it fueled? How was it

fueled in Rodin's time?

 

6) OK, got a mold, poured and perhaps annealed. The Original. Err, I

missed where the wax comes in. Heedless, Ok, I got an original and the

sculptor has destroyed the mold then died. I gathered that one takes

an original and builds a new mold, but HOW? Worse, how do they make a

scaled down/up replica?

 

You said that the Original Run was also made with Lost Wax, so I'm

thinking that the process must differ from my "Lost Styrafoam", used

to make only the mold. The hot steel vaporizes the styro and fills the

space left.

 

I got even more questions, but gotta get back to benches. You got

yourself TWO genuinely interested students out here in Griptionville.

 

Rev. Random the Other

sitting crosslegged at Tarla's feet

Ow! FUCK! OwOwOwOw!

Fucking knee still hurts

How 'bout if I just slouch on the couch?

 

 

From !!!bmyers@ionet.net Thu Aug 06 04:03:43 1998

Newsgroups: alt.slack

Subject: Re: Weasels Ripped My Flesh

From: !!!bmyers@ionet.net (TarlaStar)

Date: Thu, 06 Aug 1998 11:03:43 GMT

 

reverand@mindspring.com (Rev. Random the Other) wrote:

 

<snip description of security measures that were probably more

valuable than the sculpture itself>

 

>1) I'd be WAY interested in the details. Pammy and me were talking

>about how little we knew about the subject just two weeks ago. My

>cluelessness is embarasing. You gonna have to go REAL slow.

 

>I've always heard "Lost Wax Reproduction" used as a phrase, kinda like

>"Ethnic Albanians". This is gonna be great.

 

>What little background I have is limited to working with a steel

>foundry; sandcasting using the "Lost Styrafoam" method, I guess. I

>don't expect that Wax could stand up to the sand pounding...I can also

>work the phase-change diagrams; spectify the needs in terms of

>strength and surface/depth hardness (or specify the acceptable

>deformation under load) and eventually I can work out the %

>carbon/alloy, the heating and quenching cycles and hold times needed

>to achieve the required characteristics. Oh, and what material is

>needed for the quench (Did I say liquid sodium? Opps, I meant lead.)

>Martinsite, pearlite, ferrite. I grew up in Mill Country. US steel,

>Inland Steel. Bethleham. Rolling mill, Sheet mill, Bar mill. You'd

>think I would have some foggy clue as to bronze art, but nope.

 

>So my questions are many:

 

>1) Let's start with the actual original work. Neither Pam nor me knew

>how the original was done. Does one start with a big block of bronze

>and cut away everything that doesn't look like the statue? What tool

>is used to do this? Yes, THAT dumb. You mentioned "The actual clay

>piece." I suspect that this answers it.

 

You create a strong armature (the skeleton) then pack the clay on. I

use an oil based clay (Roma Plastalina) because it's firmer. I suspect

that Remington did too. I know that Daniel Chester French did. After

you get the clay just the way you want it, you create a mold. In

Ancient times, you made a waste mold, which meant that there would

only be ONE copy. Nowadays, you make a rubber/plaster mold. Remington

probably used alginate molds. Silicone molds are made by mixing two

elements together (very toxic and hard on the lungs, we wear

respirators in the studio when making them.) and brushing/pouring the

liquid rubber onto the original statue. We make two print coats before

adding the little plastic bubbles that define the borders of the mold

sides. (Visualize: you got this head, say, covered in green rubber,

now, you have to get the mold apart, so it has to have two sides. We

take these strips of square plastic (about two inches on a side) that

have a little bubble pushed out on one side. These are the keys that

let us know how the rubber is supposed to fit back together once we

cut it.) The keys are also covered in a layer of silicone. Now we're

ready for the plaster and hemp.

 

We take bales of hemp fibres and make little "nests" of hemp about as

big in diameter as your spread-open hand. Then we make a bucket of

moulding plaster and dump a bunch of nests into it. With the plaster

soaked nests, we make a hard shell for the silicone mold. Since the

keys are in place, the plaster part of the mold has a nice clear edge

for us to drill through when the time comes. The plaster mold is

removed from the silicon/clay statue, and we slice through the rubber

around the keys, down through the print coats and GENTLY remove the

silicone. Now it can be placed into the plaster "mother mold" and sent

to the foundry. (The mother mold is held together with long bolts or

screws in holes around those edges that you make, while the piece is

still on the statue.)

 

When the mother mold gets to the foundry, they have "wax artists" who

pour/paint microcrystaline wax into the silicone mold and right back

out again (so that you get a hollow wax positive). Vents are added to

the wax form so that later, the gases and steam can escape. The wax

positive should be a very clean finished version of the original.

 

The wax is then taken to a part of the foundry where they dip it into

a liquid ceramic and then while the ceramic is still wet, into an

aerated sand pit. It goes back and forth into the ceramic and sand

until a hard candy shell is built up around the wax (both inside and

out). Now it's ready to receive bronze.

 

The bronze is poured into the ceramic shell. The wax is immediately

dissolved, the gases and steam escaping through the vents. Bronze

fills every space where there once was was (thus: lost wax). You now

have a hollow bronze version of your original clay.

 

>2) Then a mold is made for a limited run. What material is the mold

>made from? What material WAS it made from before, say, Stainless was

>around? Or whatever.

 

You must repeat the wax through ceramic shell process for every statue

in the run. The mother mold will hold up as long as you treat it well.

Molds have been made from ceramic for at least a hundred years.

 

> 2a) How is this done? The making of the mold? How is it formed

>around the intricate bits, like the guns in the air in the Remington?

>No sand pounding, right? Are there seams in the final product that

>need to be sanded down?

 

Depending upon how big a crucible your foundry has, you will have

anywhere from two to two hundred pieces that have to be welded back

together. I don't know much about this process of chasing and welding,

but I do know that TIG and MIG welders are used. The chasers are

specialists in their own right.

 

>3) Ok, we got a mold. It can be reused. Does it split in half? Do the

>lines of the original blur with successive copies? What does it look

>like, physically?

 

Yes, yes, no unless you're taking a mold from a bronze instead of the

original source material. It looks like a big plaster pod.

 

>4) Does the sculptor need to determine the phase state characteristics

>of the bronze prior to starting? Do you decide that it needs to have a

>certain toughness and strength characteristics, and so know what alloy

>is needed?

 

No, the only thing you have to think about as a sculptor (and many

don't have a clue that they SHOULD be thinking about this) is: how

easy is this going to be to mold and cast? Pieces that hang off a

sculpture, outstretched arms etc. all have to be cut off the piece and

molded separately. Then they have to be welded back on in the end.

This is a hassle for everyone concerned...except the sculptor. Since I

understand the process, most of my work is very "tight", meaning there

aren't a whole lot of deep gaps, or extending parts. Everything grows

out of everything else.

 

> Or is bronze work re-fired afterwords, or is this even

>needed? Is bronze a standard percentage alloy, always the same? No

>wait, there is tin bronze, aluminum bronze, and silicon bronze, so no,

>it's not standard. Does the sculptor specify up front what alloy is

>needed?

 

Not usually. They leave that up to the foundry. Hell, Random, most

sculptors don't even know how to enlarge their own work. The foundries

usually employ enlargement artists to do that for them.

 

>5) Does the sculptor make the alloy at the time of the pour? What kind

>of foundry would a Remington or a Rodin have used? What is used in a

>modern studio? What does it look like, how is it fueled? How was it

>fueled in Rodin's time?

 

I'm not sure about Remington's foundry (but I can find out) however,

I've seen photos of the foundry that Rodin used. There was a family of

Frenchmen that had a wonderful foundry in Paris. Rodin used them

exclusively. It was fueled by coal in Rodin's time and most modern

foundries are gas fueled.

 

>6) OK, got a mold, poured and perhaps annealed. The Original. Err, I

>missed where the wax comes in. Heedless, Ok, I got an original and the

>sculptor has destroyed the mold then died. I gathered that one takes

>an original and builds a new mold, but HOW? Worse, how do they make a

>scaled down/up replica?

 

Okay, the original clay has been destroyed...but you have a bronze

from the first run. Now you just do the same thing to that bronze that

you did to the original clay: make a silicone/plaster mold. However,

because bronze isn't going to be quite as sharp as the clay was in

detail, a good eye will be able to tell the difference between the

first run bronzes, and subsequent bronzes that have been taken from

another bronze.

 

Enlargement and reduction are sorta easy and sorta complex.

 

When you make your original statue, you usually do so on a wooden base

of some sort. The armature is attached to this etc. When you get ready

to enlarge something, you draw a grid on your wooden base, numbering

it on one side and alphabetizing it on the other. Now you have the

ability to locate any part of the statue according to its position in

two directions. If you measure it from the wooden base to its height

above the base, you have three directions. That's all you need.

 

Let's make it simple (for me). You have a statue that is 2' tall. You

want it to be 6' tall. So you have an expansion ratio of 3:1. If, on

the small version, your wrist joint is located at A/6/3" (using the

grid, a plumb bob and a bubble level) then you will want to place the

wrist joint of your enlarged armature at A/6/9" and so on. If you

place all the joints of your figure in the exact position that they

were on in the small version, you should be able to reproduce the

figure in its larger version. In the small version we use aluminum

wire and 1/2" plumbing pipe for the armature. In the large version we

use 4" steel pipes and rebar.

 

>You said that the Original Run was also made with Lost Wax, so I'm

>thinking that the process must differ from my "Lost Styrafoam", used

>to make only the mold. The hot steel vaporizes the styro and fills the

>space left.

 

Same basic idea.

 

 

*****

It is by caffeine alone I set my mind in motion, it is by the

beans of Java, that the thoughts acquire speed, the hands

aquire shaking, the shaking becomes a warning. It is by

caffeine alone I set my mind in motion."

*****Rev. Mutha Tarla Star*****