There are at least two options for creating an epoxy resin ball:
- You can cast the composition into a cubic form of formwork. Imagine a ball inscribed in a cube and assemble the formwork according to its dimensions. The main disadvantage of this option is that it will take a very long time to shape the workpiece into a ball. Many people will not be able to do this the first time. The process is complex and time-consuming.
- It is possible to cast into a silicone spherical shape. This option has one plus that covers all possible disadvantages — this is the minimum possible treatment after curing of the resin.
In the first case there is nothing complicated. We will consider the practical part in the article processing of epoxy resin. Now we will study how to make a mold for casting according to option number two.
Many people like the way epoxy resin products look. An ordinary ball of epoxy is transparent, as if made of ice. You can put a cone, seeds, twigs, plants inside and then the product will become decorative. Someone pours resin on dry flowers, someone bugs, it is permissible to use whatever you want. The main thing is that the material should be dried as much as possible. As a result, you will get beautiful balls that will decorate the interior of the house or become decorations for a person.
Creating a silicone mold
There are various ways to create jewelry using epoxy on the Internet. After watching visual videos from Chinese masters, we can conclude that two-component silicone is required to create a high-quality form. It is produced by analogy with resin, silicone and hardener are mixed.
Such things are easy to find on Ebay: 250 grams of silicone and 25 grams of hardener with delivery will cost $5-7. They look like in the presented image.
The instructions are simple and clear. Silicone is mixed with a hardener, it is required to strictly observe the proportion of 100:10. For 100 ml of silicone, 10 ml of the hardener itself is required. How to measure this amount of material correctly. It is convenient to use syringes and special containers with a measuring scale.
In no case do not change the proportion. If you mix not 100 to 10, but in another way, the mass will harden faster or vice versa will not be able to do it, a lot of bubbles will form in it, which is very bad.
To work, you need to take a dry glass and mix the ingredients in it. Mix slowly and gently, the mixture should turn salmon pink. It is important that there are no white streaks in the mixture. Scrape everything thoroughly from the walls and bottom of the glass, continue to mix.
Next, take a second dry glass and carefully pour the mixture into it with a thin trickle, and then stir it well again. The mixture will become even more homogeneous, there will be fewer bubbles in it. If there are many more, try to pierce the bubbles with a needle.
Take small cups. It is important that they bend at least a little. At the bottom you need to drop a tiny drop of colorless glue
You need to buy glass balls. Try to choose the smoothest. The sphere is carefully placed on a drop of glue. It will take 5 minutes and the balls will be securely fixed in the cups.
The balls need to be carefully filled with silicone. We lift the cup and do it on the weight. In one hand a glass with a ball, in the other a mixture. It needs to be poured directly onto the ball, then there will be fewer bubbles in the mixture. They will burst when pouring, quickly pierce the rest with a needle.
The procedure must be completed in 40 or a maximum of 50 minutes. Next, the mixture will harden and it will not be possible to pour it on the ball in a thin, neat trickle. The procedures are simple and a maximum of 50 minutes is enough to complete them. It is necessary to pour the silicone mixture into a small plate and leave it to grasp.
Filling all containers should be left to dry for 5 minutes. Then take each one and tap their bottoms on the table. Bubbles at the bottom will begin to rise to the surface and evaporate. Next, we get rid of the remaining ones with a needle. Each container needs to be thoroughly shaken two or even three times. Do not forget to process the plate in which there is no ball.
After piercing all the bubbles and releasing the air, you can take the container and put all the cups with balls and a container without there. From the time the balls are filled with silicone, you should wait an hour and a half. Then you need to take a plate with the material, balls and immerse them in it for half, so that they do not touch the bottom, but enter the mold by 50%. In this form, it will be possible to make epoxy hemispheres.
The air bubbles are pierced, the cups are placed in one container for convenience. There is enough work for one day. The container in which the cups with the silicone mixture were placed should be loosely closed with a lid so that the vapors that form during the reaction come out.
Where to dry molds
The box is placed somewhere in the far corner so that the products dry. It will take them about a day to do this. It all depends on how warm the room is. It is important that the room is ventilated. You can place the box closer to the open window.
After a day, you can pull the balls out of the finished mold.
The final stage
If everything is done correctly, the balls will easily move away from the walls of the mold. Manicure scissors in each workpiece need to make a hole 5-9 mm. The filler will be laid through it. The shape with hemispheres can be bent in any direction, but it quickly takes its original shape.
You can test the molds. In silicone molds, epoxy resin can be poured only 7 days after manufacture, and in gypsum molds it is possible on the same day.
After waiting for the specified time for the mold to be fully ready, you should fill the molds with jewelry resin, which will harden and will easily separate from the molds.
When creating such things, follow the safety rules:
- work with gloves on;
- dry the molds in a room that is perfectly ventilated;
- keep all the chemicals where there are no children.
Creating a plaster mold
An ordinary ball made of epoxy resin is the basis of many decorations and interesting crafts. Despite the simplicity of the form, making a mold from gypsum causes difficulties for most people. All difficulties arise only because of ignorance of the process itself.
In order to make a mold from gypsum for epoxy resin, gypsum and a children’s plastic ball are needed, from which the mold will be made. The size should be chosen the one that you will need in the future.
Step-by-step algorithm for creating a plaster mold:
- We start with the preparation of the future mold. We cut the ball in half along the equator, each half of it will serve as a shape.
- We prepare a gypsum solution in the proportion of 2 parts of gypsum to one part of water. You can create a mixture of 6 tablespoons of gypsum and 3 tablespoons of water. Gypsum mortar is convenient to prepare in an ordinary plastic container, an ordinary container will do.
- Mix the composition with a stick or a tube. Stir the plaster thoroughly and quickly, it begins to thicken after a couple of minutes, and ceases to be elastic after ten minutes. It is necessary to prepare everything you need in advance to quickly make a form.
- We take the resulting mixture in our hands (do not forget to put on gloves) and begin to knead. As soon as you realize that the mixture is mixed and does not stick to the gloves, then we make a small cake out of the mash and roll it out on the table.
- Half of the ball is pressed into the plaster. We quickly distribute the plaster over the outer surface of the ball so that the entire half is completely in plaster. Gently smooth out, remove excess. Repeat the procedure with the second half of the ball.
- Each half of the ball is smeared with plaster from the outside. We put them on a convenient stand and leave them to dry for a day. After drying, we pull out part of the ball, we get a ready-made half of a new mold for balls made of epoxy. It remains only to polish the irregularities and bumps on its surface.
Mold is ready, self-made plaster mold is quite easy to manufacture. If you prepare for yourself several similar shapes of different sizes, then at any time you can start implementing creative ideas into life.
Before filling, it is necessary to try on both halves for the possibility of connection. Make a small hole in one half for pouring resin. Treat the inner cavity with a sealant, then connect the halves using silicone sealant. After waiting for it to dry completely and checking the mold for strength and tightness, you can pour resin into it. After drying of the polymer composition, the mold can be broken or carefully separated.
Plaster or alabaster is easy to find in stores already packaged in small packages.
Important points in the manufacture of plaster mold:
- homemade blanks perfectly convey all the elements of the original shape, in this case the ball;
- gypsum hardens well and quickly;
- thin blanks dry faster, thick ones take longer;
- the thicker the mold, the harder it is to use;
- it is necessary to pay due attention to the consistency of the kneaded gypsum, as it should not be too thick or watery;
- after solidification, it is desirable to sand the resulting mold so that the epoxy product is smooth.
The shape of a pin pong ball
Another simple method of manufacturing, in which ordinary pin-pong balls will serve as forms. Each of them is cut and placed inside a cone. You can take something else at the discretion of the master. The epoxy resin is poured through a hole that is made at the top of the ball.
A step-by-step algorithm will help to carry out the work correctly. First, take a masking tape and carefully wrap it around the balls. Make a hole at the top. To make the ball stable, put it on the bottle cap. Now pour a mixture of epoxy resin mixed with a hardener into the hole.
The resin will harden in the molds, and the balls will need to be released from them. To make them look beautiful (icy), they are covered with an additional layer of resin. Now the pattern is clearly visible on them.
At the final stage, three balls with cones inside them are connected to each other and a decorative composition is obtained. How to fix them together, you can use the same epoxy resin or transparent glue.
To create real masterpieces from epoxy resin, it is necessary to find interesting original molds for pouring. In this case, the shape of a ball or two hemispheres is necessary.
Ready–made molds are made of different materials, but the most popular are silicone products, since this material is well suited for pouring polymer composition. It will not be difficult to remove the finished product from silicone molds without damaging it, which is very important. The walls of such mouldings are smooth, so the grinding of the finished product will be minimal.
Ready-made molds for such experiments are often made in the form of a ball, oval, leaves, flowers, various geometric shapes, and so on. They can be found in the store, and the cost of this set will be small. It will also not be difficult to make silicone molds yourself. It’s interesting, but not always necessary.
Masters claim that two-component liquid silicone is the best material for the production of molds for casting products made of epoxy resin. The finished form will harden without shrinkage, for which it will not even require heating. The composition hardens perfectly at room temperature.
Some craftsmen use ordinary silicone sealant mixed with gypsum for the manufacture of molds, but the quality of such forms is slightly worse. You need to be able to work with them.
Professionals recommend buying two-component silicone, as it is created specifically for filling work and does not stick after solidification. It turns out that the most successful form for making objects from epoxy resin will be a mold made of silicone.
Creating a keychain sphere
To create a beautiful accessory, you will need epoxy resin with moldings or molds into which it will be poured. A suitable resin may look like the picture.
Fillers for jewelry need to be prepared in advance, it can be dried flowers with a pretty composition of mushrooms. The basis for it is polymer clay, and mushrooms are also made of polymer, but it glows in the dark. Green twigs are dried moss. Small sticks are a mineral (gypsum), white sand at the base, which also glows.
Following the instructions, the resin needs to be mixed 1 to 2. Disposable cups are perfect for mixing.
All components are poured into one container and gently mixed in circular movements. In this way, fewer bubbles are formed, which are difficult to fight. Two forms are being prepared: in one, the products will come out in the form of bullets, and in the second, a sphere will turn out.
With the help of a needle or toothpick, the flowers are neatly placed in the mold. To avoid bubbles, fill the resin with a thin trickle.
You need to fix everything, and you can straighten the leaves with a toothpick. The resin is poured into the molds with the top, it will dry out and decrease slightly.
Pour warm water and put molds with resin there. Bubbles will rise. It is required to remove them by piercing with a needle.
A day will pass and the product will dry up, after which it can be pulled out. On the left there is a new mold, after it the craft can not be polished, it is enough to correct a little from above and attach the accessories.
The right product will need to be sanded for a long time with different sandpaper. You should start with coarse sandpaper with an index of 240, then 500 and at the final stage 1500. The best sandpapers are waterproof, which are wetted with water during operation. If not moistened, a lot of dust will form.
Grinding the ball is not difficult by hand, but it will take time. Upon completion of the work, it can be polished using a milling cutter with five nozzles, which polish the nails.
The sphere can be polished with a milling cutter with a brush, using a car polish. It contains carnauba wax (in the photo on the finger). Further polishing takes place with a dry cloth, microfiber. In the end, you can use coconut oil, rub it and wipe it with a cloth.
Now the sphere is transparent, you can fix the accessories on it and use the product at will.
It turned out to be an original and beautiful pendant or keychain.
The first option (we fill in the cube from which we turn out the ball) may seem even more interesting than the second (we create a shape, and then we fill it). But as always there are nuances, this method is worth choosing if:
- your ball should be a large size;
- do you have a machine for processing such a billet;
- you know how to use it at the level of a professional, not an amateur.
The second option is described in detail and it is worth adding only that the most common mistake is getting a sphere with a beveled end. Hence the advice. Whatever shape you use, homemade silicone, plaster or from a tennis ball, make a funnel of silicone around the place of filling. This way you will get a sphere on the leg, which will then be easy to cut off. Successful experiments.