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ANH trooper
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Joined: 20 Oct 2005
Posts: 302
Location: UK

PostPosted: Thu Nov 24, 2005 2:26 pm    Post subject: Vacuum forming multiple moulds Reply with quote

Hi,

I would like to hear from anyone who is getting good results vaccing multiple moulds on their 24" platens?

I have tried this but never seem to get the desired results.Either one side of the form is too thin or it didn't pull too well.

I have now made different sized platens so I can just vac smaller parts on their own and it's working great,but I just want to hear if you have had good success and what set up you are using.

Thanks,

-Paul.
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Israel franco
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Joined: 22 Sep 2005
Posts: 51
Location: mexico d.f.

PostPosted: Thu Nov 24, 2005 2:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

hi my friend i dont make any pulls yet but i think jim alredy do it and in the photos look good, maybe you need put the molds a little more separated between one and other
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jegner
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Joined: 30 May 2003
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Location: Texas, USA

PostPosted: Tue Dec 13, 2005 7:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My biggest problem with ganging up multi molds on a single pull is webbing. Spacing and height of each mold seem to play into the success or failure of a good pull.
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crashmann
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Joined: 27 Sep 2005
Posts: 479

PostPosted: Wed Dec 14, 2005 11:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Paul,

I've got a 24" x 36" table, and have had good success pulling multiple items simultaneously:





Another angle:





Like Jim said, the height of your bucks plays a major role in the number of pieces you can pull. These items were roughly 5" tall, and since the plastic went all the way down to the platen, I had to be generous with the space between them. Also, you can space them strategically - It's ok if a web is formed on the part that is removed from the finished piece, as long as the actual part does not have webbing.

I'm going to re-work the bicep/tricep and elbow bucks so they can butt up right next to each other - then the plastic won't need to stretch all the way down to the platen surface, eliminating the webbing.

It's better to have blank space on the formed plastic than trashing the whole pull because it went webby!

Good luck!

Charlie
TC-386


Last edited by crashmann on Tue Mar 28, 2006 10:18 pm; edited 1 time in total
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ANH trooper
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Joined: 20 Oct 2005
Posts: 302
Location: UK

PostPosted: Thu Dec 15, 2005 2:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks fellas Smile

I have actually made some of my moulds,mainly arm parts,so they butt up to each other and can form like the bicep and forearm in one pull using my smallest 12"x22" frames.

I tried pulling 2 shin parts of my stormtrooper moulds and didn't get enough pull on it,but that was before I bought this new vac and I just wanted to know how you guys got on with your multiple mould pulls.Looks like I'll give it another go Smile

Hey Charlie,

I must say I like your former mate,very nice!Have you tried pulling anything big like a helmet yet?This is what bothers me about the flip-flop frame.You really need to drop the plastic straight down onto a part like a trooper helmet otherwise it will either be too thin on one side or maybe rip.I could be wrong here but that's my theory.

Are those Mike Harrisons UNK clone moulds by any chance?

Cheers,

-Paul.
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crashmann
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Joined: 27 Sep 2005
Posts: 479

PostPosted: Fri Dec 16, 2005 8:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Paul,

You are correct sir! Those are UNK clone armor parts! We've pulled the upper chest and lower torso / cod pieces. As you can see, they are enormous!



This buck is at least 8" tall!



The chest piece is just as thick. There's a video if you follow this link (make sure you have the latest version of QuickTime - which comes with iTunes)

Here's a trimmed chest piece. I think the plastic does strange things to people...



We are pulling .125 HIPS, and it definitely gets thinner with the larger pieces. Not to the point where we are worried about the strength of the item, but it is noticeable. We positioned the shorter side of the buck close to the hinge, since that will contact the plastic first. Also, when we swing the forming frame over, it is extremely fast! Bang! The table wobbles, and everyone pushes down on the plastic to get the details to come through.

I'm using a big shop vac, 5 horsepower, and with a fresh filter (that is only used when pulling molds. I change it out and use a different filter for cleaning up the workshop). It does a great job pulling down the plastic (okay, it creates a large negative pressure zone which results in the atmosphere pushing down on the plastic....) One day I hope to upgrade to beer kegs Razz

Obviously with a helmet, you'll want to stick with the .090 to capture details, but the helmet isn't as large as a chest or abdomen either. I think you'll do fine.

I haven't done a helmet myself. But I've got a Kellogg's Episode II that is begging me to work on it Smile Maybe during the holiday break I can pour some plaster in there and get to customizing...

Good luck!

Charlie
TI-386


Last edited by crashmann on Tue Mar 28, 2006 10:19 pm; edited 1 time in total
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jegner
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Joined: 30 May 2003
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Location: Texas, USA

PostPosted: Fri Feb 10, 2006 10:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Great info! Looks like you guys had a good time!

Any progress pics? Do you have a finished suit yet?

Keep us updated!
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crashmann
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Joined: 27 Sep 2005
Posts: 479

PostPosted: Sat Feb 11, 2006 12:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, the Clone Trooper project is on hiaitus right now... Not a lot of progress since our main sculptor has been assembling and perfecting the ultimate sandtrooper costume from the last of the TE armor. Oh, and he's got a girlfriend now too Shocked

So, I thought of using the pink building insulation foam since it's readily available, and relatively cheap. I worked up a knee plate that looked fairly decent:



Until I pulled some .060 HIPS over it:



The pink foam can't take the heat, and the nice sharp corners I had became rounded off.

Not a big deal, since this was just a test piece. I think if I built up the foam to 70% of the final part, then added a couple of layers of plaster to the bring it to the final size, it would be fine. Check out what this crazy guy does with foam and clay Very Happy

I've also done a little work on the Episode II clone trooper helmet. I call him Chinchilla!



Obviously, I've got the chin built up with a ton of Hydrostone, and now need to shape it to something a little more proporationate. Jay Leno would be very envious Razz

Charlie
TI-386
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jegner
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Location: Texas, USA

PostPosted: Thu Feb 16, 2006 1:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've heard about casting rough blocks of UltraCal30. Mixing it till its a thick-thick pan-cake batter consistnecy, then pouring that into blocks. It suppose to set hard in 15 minutes, then sculpt it with hand tools. I don't know much about it, as I use MDF plywood, bass wood, and hobby boards, but as a limited use medium, for a test pull that might work better thant he foam.

You could even make a master from this stuff, pull a vac mold of it, then fill that with resin, or some other more permenant material.


Last edited by jegner on Thu Feb 16, 2006 10:34 pm; edited 1 time in total
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ANH trooper
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Joined: 20 Oct 2005
Posts: 302
Location: UK

PostPosted: Thu Feb 16, 2006 7:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Do you think coating the pink foam with something like polyester resin (very thin coat) or maybe even varnishing it just to make it hard enough so you can get a decent pull to take a plaster mould from it?

Seems like alot of hard work can go to waste after sculpting a part and then have it ruined by making a pull on it.At least it would be worth damaging the sculpt if you could form a mould from it.

Just a thought!

-Paul.
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crashmann
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Joined: 27 Sep 2005
Posts: 479

PostPosted: Thu Feb 16, 2006 8:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Casting the UltraCal in blocks and shaping while it it still a little pliable may be a good way to work with it. When I built up the Chinchilla, I mixed a small bowl of plaster (using the James Thurston method, sift plaster into water until you get a crusty top, then blend thoroughly), then I used a spatula to build up the chin. Mixing in small quantities allows the plaster to cure faster. I also wore a latex glove to help smooth it out.

The plaster is amazing, when the working time is up, it turns into rock (no matter how much you try to keep it liquidy!) I use wood carving tools to work it close to the desired shape.

The polyester resin would probably work to protect the pink foam. I know some stuff will cause the foam to melt (CA glue), but I haven't tried polyester resin or varnish on the stuff. It would be worth testing it outside (when the foam melts down, it releases horrid fumes). Adding a little layer of something to the foam will certainly allow you to pull a mould that can be used to create a plaster buck.

Let us know if you try it (and I'll reciprocate Smile).

Charlie
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thebluecanary
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Joined: 02 Feb 2006
Posts: 123
Location: St. Louis, MO

PostPosted: Fri Feb 17, 2006 8:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Why not just make a casting of the foam, and then uses the casting to make a plaster mold. OR even a fiberglass mold. Granted the plaster mold wouldn't last forever, but if you make a fiberglass version, you can recast that one in plaster over and over again.
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ofthesith
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Joined: 17 Dec 2005
Posts: 6
Location: Ohio

PostPosted: Sat Mar 04, 2006 10:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Or how about putting a coat of bondo on it to strenghten it to get a cast/pull of it? Anyone try anything like this?
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jegner
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Joined: 30 May 2003
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Location: Texas, USA

PostPosted: Tue Mar 21, 2006 8:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, I've tried to use a vac-pull as a mold for duplicating my molds of shins and forearms. To be honest, these did not turn out well at all. There is a lot of detail that gets lost.

The pink foam is a cool idea for making a sculpture, but I think you would need to then make a plaster negative mold over it, then remove the pink foam, and then fill the plaster negative mold with ultracal to get a working vac-form buck.

Trying to vac-form over the pink foam I don't think will work very well. I have heard of a material called balsafoam, that can standup to limited vac forming, but that stuff is expensive.
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TK 109
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Joined: 11 May 2007
Posts: 712
Location: Galena, Ohio

PostPosted: Mon May 14, 2007 4:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

that's insane. Shocked
I wondered if anyone vacuformed clone trooper armor...
I just added more coils to the cold spots (ie corners, sides) and i am getting fantastic results with the 0.060 in thick HIPS, and my 5 HP w/d vac!
Jst make sure to go fully from the black aaaalllllllllllllllll the way to the white, otherwise, the additional coils will act as ground... Sad
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