Featured at My Etsy Shop:

An image of the spinning centrifuge

With a good flame playing across the now molten and shimmering gold, I give it a stir with the carbon rod and then sprinkle the surface of the metal with borax. This acts as a flux, from the Latin for “to flow”. This chemical helps to prevent the oxidation of molten metals thus helping them to blend as an alloy and to flow into the cavity awaiting. After one final stir of the rod, I release the spring and the centrifuge spins to life. I have no idea as to acceleration rates or speeds but it becomes a blur of motion in the blink of an eye.

This is an image of the kiln which is glowing at 1350 degrees Fahrenheit.

I use a centrifugal casting system. Essentially a large dynamic tub, the centrifuge is powered by a large spring, which is cocked and locked for the process of melting and casting the metal of choice.  When released, it gives enormous pressure to the molten metal now flowing outward and into the vacated flask.  Notice the angular structure in the middle of image number 7.   This cradle serves to hold the flask and next to it is a ceramic crucible which is where the precious metals are melted and prepared for casting.

An image of pure gold in grain form

In the process of shopping for or commissioning a major jewelry purchase, the phrase “lost wax casting” is often heard.  The wax casting process is often discussed over the countertop but little understood by jewelry customers.  Jewelers often take it for granted that everyone understands this ancient technique; perhaps assuming that knowledge passes by osmosis.  Little could be further from the truth.


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