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  • cliffrod
    commented on 's reply
    Thanks, Barry. We need to get together and do something, even if it's just getting together. Maybe after the holidays settle down?

  • Rex_A_Lott
    replied
    Nice work, thanks for the mini-documentary. Wish I had had known you needed a bead roller, I have a Horrible Freight one you could borrow, ( hey I didnt know any better at the time ).
    Looks like you made out fine without it. Now when I go to the Library, I can say, " Hey, I know the guy that made that leaf".

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  • cliffrod
    commented on 's reply
    Thank you very much, sirs. Much appreciated.

  • Peter Tommasini
    replied
    Very Well done Cliff , looks really good
    Peter T.

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  • neilb
    replied
    great work cliffy

    i'm glad this general chit chat section is here, it may not be all about metal shaping but it shows other skills which can be just as interesting if not more so. great work!

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  • cliffrod
    commented on 's reply
    Thanks, Robert.

  • MP&C
    replied
    Well done Clint!

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  • cliffrod
    commented on 's reply
    Thanks, Charlie. I'm increasingly happy with how the bronze looks alone in the pics. Gauging how things will look when color, shading/value and sheen vary so much throughout the process is a challenge.

    Stone is always the same. Until it gets dirty, only surface, light & shadow need to be understood. Bronze allows cheating, because the specific patina products used (in this case, liver of sulfur) create a specific determinant color and varying amounts of permanent darkness depending upon how they are applied. Shadows may be light dependent or permanent dark areas, no matter what the shape or surface is. That a major reason why I'm not a big fan of bronze.

    At least this casting is monolithic, which is the only type of bronze casting that I respect as having legitimate artistic integrity. Most wax models are cut into many pieces before casting, then welded back together with lots of metal finishing to camouflage the joints & present the completed job as monolithic. The excuse offered for this approach is how difficult and expensive it is to produce a large, complicated work in one piece. But I guess that's why those artists and sculptors don't carve granite....

    Monolithic work is the great artistic achievement.

  • Chazza
    replied
    Fantastic work Cliffy!

    Your talents know no bounds,

    Cheers Charlie

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  • cliffrod
    replied
    Once the metal work that we like was done, I skinned the armature with a uniform layer of sulfur-free plastilina to finalize the detail. The foundry I use prefers sulfur-free product be used, as the sulfur can interfere with curing of some silicone molding products and cause failures. I keep special clay/plastilina on hand for such work. Normally, I use old Roma Plastilina for my models for all stone & plaster projects. Using the proper products, I don't experience such failures but that's why I use them.

    Plastilina was only applied to the front, with minor application on the back around the mounting receivers to smooth their appearance-

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    I did check fit and get approval once again before taking this to the foundry in Sept(?). Fast forward to December. They called yesterday and said it was ready to pick up. Right now I'm doing clay while waiting for the next stone to arrive in a few days. So I hit the road & picked it up.

    Please don't misunderstand my above statements. They are relevant to the variety of molding products & methods- as are often discussed in this work- and not meant as criticism. The foundry does excellent mold work. Above is the model before foundry work. Below are two pics from today, after the mold was pulled from the model and job was cast. They're good, but such a mold costs $400.00/sf for them to produce. For this 3 square foot leaf, the molding charge was $1,200.00.

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    And now, the 30" long finished bronze leaf. It came out well imho because it looks like a plain little leaf & does not look to be 30" long.


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    And the back, with mounting receivers visible

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    Now it needs final fitment. With the holidays and sketchy weather at hand, it will probably be a few weeks before all is done. I'll post a few more pics when I have them. I can say that producing this model & doing the job would have been far more difficult without equipment like Peter's English Wheel and what I've learned from my friends and mentors in the metal shaping community. I owe a lot of people a lot of thanks for taking me to new levels of capacity and productivity. It's one thing to say "I can do that". It's another to have the right gear and knowledge to make it happen when it counts. This project used only an English wheel and hand tools to do the basic leaf. In return, this project basically paid for my HandBuilt English wheel. Very cool

    Thanks for what y'all have done for me, especially men like RockHillWill, Jim Hery, Peter Tommasini, Robert McCartney & Bill Tromblay. You've all had a part in this project.
    Attached Files

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  • Steve Murphy
    replied
    Nice work Cliff, keep those posts coming 👍

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  • cliffrod
    replied
    With fitment and serrations good, it was time for veining the armature. Once again, a magnifying glass and some studying helped replicate the lost original. This was done with corking & chasing tools and hammer to first develop and then finalize the valleys.

    Lines drawn with sharpie on front, references transferred to the back and it was all worked accordlingly-

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    blue tape shows location of one of the supports-

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  • cliffrod
    replied
    Now it was time to develop detail on the leaf. The blank width aspect was left larger to accommodate serrations. Again, the original piece was art, not reality. Some time with a magnifying glass helped quantify how many serrations were present on the original leaf, as well as how large they were. Real peach leaves have very fine serrations and are far more numerous than these interpreted ones. But, that's why it's a restoration project...

    Back at the shop, serrations were marked,

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    then cut and trimmed-

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    Then back to town for another fit/check/adjustment and approval from the patron before continuing. It was also time for a little more "that's not what a peach leaf looks like..." free advice from the peanut gallery

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    And back to the shop...

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  • cliffrod
    replied
    Thankfully, the installation is only a few miles from my studio. The armature looked good installed on the peach-

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    During the process, numerous curious & helpful bystanders were glad to ask what was being done. They were generous in sharing their opinions about what a peach leaf actually looks like. I was not surprised.

    The previous failure of a bronze leaf was discussed with the patrons. it was agreed that a more substantial means of installation & support was needed. Ultimately, two receivers were developed on the back of the leaf. One will attach to a larger foot, which will be attached to the stone by a large pin and epoxy. The other receiver is for an adjustable vertical support that will carry the majority of the weight of the leaf. these are hard to see from most vantage points on the ground, so not much for photographs of them.

    This shows the lower foot, as viewed from the ground. Once finalized, the visible upper portion of the vertical rod will be appropriately shortened-

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    Skipping ahead, but this shows development of the vertical support

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    Ultimately, these mounting components will be fabricated from stainless steel once all dimensions are clarified after the final bronze leaf returns from the foundry.
    Last edited by cliffrod; 12-12-2019, 08:37 PM.

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  • cliffrod
    replied
    So far, so good. The leaf blank came together pretty easily. Now I had to weld on the stem. This was my first attempt to gas weld something like a 1/2" diameter aluminum rod directly to .063 sheet. It was instructive and a good lesson.

    Formed the aluminum over the horn of my anvil, using original broken stem remnant as a general guide-

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    I did work the stem thinner in the area to be welded to benefit the welding effort

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    Then the welding began.

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    In the end, it was a good experience to learn more about heat soak, jigging larger pieces like this, watching it all fall apart, cutting away failed portions, making new repair sections, cutting away failed portions again. repeating the process again. And again and maybe again iirc....

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    I was quite happy by the time I finished. the welded area was adequately sound and took all the effort I applied to bring the piece to the needed level. No critical problems beyond this point were experienced.


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    Now it was back to town for some fitting work.

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