The First Bronze Pour of the Season

By Trevor Gregg

I believe I mentioned in the past that watching metal flow is mesmerizing. The sculpture class at Keystone recently had their first bronze pour of the semester, and I figured I would share some photos from it this week so that you can see just how mesmerizing it can be. Enjoy!

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The bronze is melted down in a crucible. It is heated to around 2000°F or hotter, and when it is lifted out of the furnace, the crucible is glowing white.

 

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The crucible is carefully set down and removed from the crane.
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Any bronze that is already solidifying is skimmed off the top of the pot.
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In a matter of moments, the crucible is beginning to cool – but it is still a scalding orange. It’s locked into place so it can be safely carried to the molds.
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The investment molds are buried in sand, so at this time we can’t see what the students are making. The bronze needs to be poured quickly before it begins to cool – maybe a bit too quickly here. You can see the metal splash!
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A good and steady pour.
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When all the molds are filled, any extra bronze is poured into a metal ingot mold – it’s still glowing orange on the bottom right. The crucible is placed back into the furnace. It isn’t uncommon for flames to leap out of the furnace like that, so this is done quickly!

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