Metal Casting

Switching to Zinc.

So zinc is cheaper, at 2 dollars a pound, instead of 18 dollars a pound for the pewter.  On top of that, it looks nicer.  It took a while to figure out how to melt, because of the higher temperature, but we now know how to melt it.

Here’s a comparison.  The circle on the right is pewter.  The blob on the left is zinc.  As you can see, the zinc is a lot cleaner and better looking.

Pre-mold pieces

These are the pre-mold versions of the shapes.  We made two attempts at the Allied logo, but in the end, I think the Soviet one looks much better.  Either way, we’re going to turn all three of these into a casting mold on Saturday, and hopefully, if all goes well, we’ll have finished pendants by next week!

Pendants I bought

So, I bought some pendants from a website I found online a long while ago.  They finally arrived, but they’re not exactly what I expected.  I’m not sure what I was expecting, maybe something bigger.  Anyway, here they are:

I put them next to a lego figure so you can see their size more accurately.  What I plan on doing is casting pendants of my own with the pewter.  They’ll be a bit larger than these, and they’ll be more durable, as it turns out that these are made with some cheap, really malleable metal.  I’m not positive, but seeing as how they came from China, they might have traces of lead.  Ho boy!

On another note, the metals in the last post were tried and tested.  The pewter melts fine, but the Zinc doesn’t.  The heat source we were using (a stove) isn’t hot enough to melt zinc.  Fortunately, upon further research, I found that it’s a bad idea to melt zinc with the same tools you use for melting other metals, cause the zinc can oxidize and screw shit up.

So, with that said, I’ll give more updates soon.  We’ll have the first batch of pendants within two weeks.  We’re starting with an Allied pendant!

Purchased new metal.

So, Heather and I went out and got some new metals for melting.  Here’s a picture of what we got.

Now, the four chunks of metal on the top row is  pewter.  It’s 92% Tin, 7.75% Alimony, and .25% copper.  It’s a perfect casting metal.  The bottom layer is pure zinc.  The reason we decided to buy that is because where Pewter is $18 a pound, Zinc is way cheaper, at 2 dollars a pound.

So, we’re going to experiment with melting Zinc, seeing if it makes just as good of pendants, without oxidizing or tarnishing, and if it’s a comparable metal that works just as well, we’ll stick with that.

Pewter Casting

So, I’m teaching myself how to cast pewter.  I’ll update as time goes on, but here’s a basic start.  I’m planning on melting down these items:

Together, they weigh a little over two pounds (if the scale I was using is accurate, anyway).  I plan on making pendants out of them for myself and possibly others at  I’ll probably wind up selling them over there, but I might give something or another away as a prize.