Monday, February 9, 2015

Showing the Process- Copper Pipe Pendants part 2

In part 1- I showed how to cut a copper pipe into smaller pieces to make copper pendants. It's not really a tutorial per se, more of some pictures of what I do. I skipped some really boring steps, like measuring and using a sharpie marker for the etching.

Once I have the circles cut, there are a few things that need to happen, cleaning, and etching. That's many pictures of filing and a couple pictures of my pickle pot, Wire-wrap a bail, it's hard to photograph, when both hands have pliers in them! More boring stuff! Then I squish a piece of polymer clay inside:
 My clay is dirty and swirly. I wasn't careful to keep it fresh, since it will be covered anyway. However, if your polymer is a bright color, say sky blue? Yeah, it might show through your art work! So, careful about that.... since it sort of shows on my horse pendant!

 I made a mold of my copper pipe and I used that as a template to cut out my postage stamp art.

Then you follow your resin instructions, and carefully pour. I use a medicine dropper for babies, since I have babies and seem to have a bundle of those- after each use they get thrown out, the resin residue is sticky and super hard to clean. So, I toss them out.

Even with practice- things can go wrong. Two of these pendants didn't harden, and the tape on my clear backless pendant, gave way and made a big mess. The big mess- well, out of luck there. But, the ones that didn't harden? I waited a week- a really long time, usually hardening occurs in 2 days, but I wanted to be super sure the pour went all wrong. It was wrong, so I poured again, and, Voila! hardened perfectly. 

These pendants take a lot of time. Making a batch, I cut 12 bezels, and ended up making 5 pendants, 1 pendant is irreparable, and the time investment is still around 9 hours. I'm hoping to get faster with each round, it still seems like quite a bit of time "hands on" then there is a bit of time- left in the etching acid, in the pickle pot and drying resin- those stages are "hands off" but I still set the oven timer, to be sure things don't get over done. 

I hope that you can see how this comes together and get inspired for your own next project.

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