King Sculpture Studios

                                       Tim King,  Classic Sculptor


10. Metal Pour- After melting bronze ingots and transferring to a crucible, 2000 F  (1093 C) molten bronze is poured into each shell.

BRONZE HISTORY AND LOST-WAX PROCESS

Bronze is a metal alloy that is primarily composed of copper.  Depending upon country of origin, foundry, and metal ingot choices, fine art bronze is generally composed of copper, manganese, and silica.


Various forms of bronze casting processes date back more than 3000 years to the beginning of The Bronze Age.


Our sculptures are created using the Lost Wax process, which consist of approximately 15 steps, spanning 3 to 4 months, after hundreds of hours are invested in the original clay sculpture.

15. Basing- Many sculptures are attached to stone or wood bases and turntables.

14. Patina- An oven, chemicals, traditional pigments, torches, airbrushes and hand scrubbing are used to apply color. The patina is protected by lacquer, and the lacquer is protected by hand buffing with paste wax.

13. Metal Chasing- Air tools, burs and sanding are used to hide weld lines and to recreate the original sculpture textures.  A high level of quality control and inspection is a key element in all of the production phases.

12. Reassemble-  The separately cast metal sections are welded back together.

11. Removing Shell- Using air hammers, plasma cutters, and sand blasting, the ceramic shell is broken and cleaned from the cooled bronze parts.

9. Lost Wax- Pressured steam is used to melt the wax from the hardened shell at about 1600 F  (871 C).  The inner walls of the now hollow shell are ready to be filled with bronze.

8. Ceramic Shell- The wax pieces are repeatedly dipped into a fine sand slurry mixture.  About 12 layers are built up over multiple days.  All sides of the wax are coated in order to make a hollow sculpture. The shell also must be created for every individual bronze casting and can only be used one time.

7. Spruing- Wax sprues, gates and pouring cups are added to each separate wax piece to properly guide molten bronze and air flow.


6. Wax Chase- The detailed wax replica of the sculpture pieces are removed from the molds.  Mold seam lines are removed, and some of the wax pieces are reassembled.  Flaws such as air bubbles and bumps are manually removed and resculpted in wax.

5. Wax Pour-  The mold is cleaned of clay remnants, and layers of wax are painted and poured into the molds, building a layer of about 3/16" thick.  One wax copy is required every time a bronze sculpture is cast.

3. Mold- Liquid rubber is applied over the original clay sculpture. The molds are usually made in multiple sectional pieces, and the clay sculpture is destroyed during this process.
4. Mother Mold-  The cured rubber molds are covered with plaster for support.

2. Sculpt- Working with models, drawings, photos and video, clay and/or wax are sculpted around the armature.

Anatomical measurements are important in accurately portraying figures, emotion, gesture, mood, and story.  This is also the step when I am most able to involve the client, children, or outreach for exciting hands-on activities.

1. Armature- A structure is used to initially design the sculpture forms and gesture.  The armature is often made with aluminum wire, plumbing piping, and foam sheets or spray.  The client is consulted to discuss ideas, suggestions, and options.
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