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Author Topic: Hirst Molds  (Read 2213 times)

Offline Nicholas Ironfist

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Hirst Molds
« on: May 29, 2009, 12:59:55 AM »
Has anyone here used these molds, if so how did it all come out? What medium did you use, and is there an Australian equivilant you know of? I have just tryed white cement and it hasn't worked so good :(, I don't want to use plaster of paris cause its not supposed to work well either. Any suggestions?
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Offline Captain Tineal

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Re: Hirst Molds
« Reply #1 on: May 29, 2009, 01:19:02 PM »
I've heard nothing but rave reviews of Hirst's moulds, and have read through their site pretty extensively just befor Xmas because that is what I wanted (but didn't get) and they actually recommend dental plaster - the stuff they make moulds of your teeth with.  I believe they also had a list of sites you could buy it, sorted by country.
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Offline Midaski

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Re: Hirst Molds
« Reply #2 on: May 29, 2009, 06:15:19 PM »
They are brilliant. - I have several, and I am thinking of buying some more.

However they are not cheap and the v $ is not good at the moment.
I bought mine direct from Bruce and combined an order with VoV over at TWF to maximise discounts.

Be aware that producing the 'bricks' is time consuming.

For examples look at the large towers - the 8" Round or the Hexagonal ones and I think they say you need to cast the mould 20+ times.
That's for one tower - if you are building a castle then you may want 4 or more towers.

Casting each mould once probably takes 30 minutes.

I usually mix enough for two moulds at a time, and then have others going while some are drying.

Dental plaster is good, I use something called Herculite 2 Plaster - a 25kg bag cost me around 11.00

The results are very good though, and you can create whatever your imagination allows ............

It's like quality warhammer lego ..................

 :engel:
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Metal to Finecast - It is mostly a swap of medium. 

You mean they will be using Ouija boards instead of Tarot cards for their business plans from now on?

Offline Dihenydd

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Re: Hirst Molds
« Reply #3 on: May 29, 2009, 08:45:57 PM »
I love my molds!  Although I second Mid's comment about time.  It takes a lot of blocks and there's not as many as you might think on each mold. 

Depending on what its for I use either Hydrocal - rock hard, readily available and can be purchased at my local model railroader store, or I use 'model' grade plaster of paris from Michaels. 

The hydrocal is more expensive and definitely stronger, but heavier too.  If I was to get more molds (very likely) I'd get the wall builder which is similar to the roof.  Its a bit thinner than reg blocks but if its enclosed and you're not wanting to look inside its perfect. 

Bruce's little vids and tutorials are great for helping to turn out perfect blocks. 

I use a method similar to Mid's, except I make enough plaster to fill 2 molds in one go, wait 5 min for the water to rise and then do my leveling off, then I do a second batch.  Then I either do another project for a bit or watch an hour long episode of something on the TV or more likely play "soccerball" with my 2yo son.  Pop the blocks, clean them off, set them on some newspaper to help them dry and do the same process again.  The second batch I usually leave overnight and just pop 'em before work.  Typically I do this twice a week and at this rate its pretty slow.

I highly highly highly recommend starting small with your projects to get a handle on things and to give yourself some success.  My first two were great, my third project is 1/3 done and it was started in September!  Will look great when done however!

If at all possible buy larger amounts in one go, find a friend and then you can 'share' blocks when needed.  I find I don't always need all the block on the mold but make them and then bin them for later.  For my latest project I need on angle block that only is one per mold.  I calculated I need 200 more to finish which is a lot of time!  Plus if you buy more you save a bit on shipping and discounts etc.

DO NOT buy of eBay, for some strange reason, its considerably more unless you are buying someone's mold they no longer want.  The dealers are buying from Bruce and then reselling.  price is comparible, but S/H is outrageous usually.

Also, choose which line you want carefully.  Not all the 'extra's go well together. 

Have fun!  its a great product but is by no means 'instant'.  I thoroughly enjoy mine.
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Offline patsy02

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Re: Hirst Molds
« Reply #4 on: May 29, 2009, 09:47:43 PM »
Quote
The results are very good though, and you can create whatever your imagination allows ............

It's like quality warhammer lego ..................

When using dental plaster, are the air bubbles a problem? Do you need to to use a resin shaker to get them out?
I agree with the inhumane treatment of animals.

Offline Dihenydd

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Re: Hirst Molds
« Reply #5 on: May 30, 2009, 04:16:19 AM »
It can help, but I've no trouble with small mixtures.  Plus always add the plaster to the water, not the other way round. stir strongly but slowly.

I also use the paintbrush technique for the thin molds but use it for all (ie 'paint' the mold before pouring plaster.

I don't use the shaker but haven't had issues using this.
Sometimes the "Old Ones" just need to leave.....

Offline Midaski

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Re: Hirst Molds
« Reply #6 on: May 30, 2009, 08:32:44 PM »
When using dental plaster, are the air bubbles a problem? Do you need to to use a resin shaker to get them out?


 Same as above - shake plaster into water ............ then ......

I got a square board, around 12 ", and taped a few foam rectangles from blisters to the underside and use it as a 'pounder' - usually sorts all the bubbles.
Quote from: Gneisenau
Quote
Metal to Finecast - It is mostly a swap of medium. 

You mean they will be using Ouija boards instead of Tarot cards for their business plans from now on?

Offline Nicholas Ironfist

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Re: Hirst Molds
« Reply #7 on: May 31, 2009, 07:40:57 AM »
I have been casting all week. I run 5 molds at a time. I procured dental stone and it works very well. (7kgs for $20 aussie). I'm working on the warlock house and a scratch built port. Pics when finished.
Diddo on the highly recommended, the molds are awesome, lots of fun to use if a bit messy.
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Offline Khunag

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Re: Hirst Molds
« Reply #8 on: May 31, 2009, 08:45:45 AM »
Quote
I don't want to use plaster of paris cause its not supposed to work well either.

It works great actually. I never used HA moulds, but i made some myself and i'm very pleased with the results.

Dental plaster would be probably better, but i don't feel the need to buy any, i just add some carpenters glue to the mix and the casts are pretty strong.

Quote
Casting each mould once probably takes 30 minutes.

I do it in 15 or something like that. The elements are dry enough to get them out of the moulds after that time (depending on the material and mix used of course).



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Offline Nicholas Ironfist

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Re: Hirst Molds
« Reply #9 on: June 12, 2009, 11:57:20 AM »
This is my efforts so far...Bofenhafen Harbour



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Offline Warlord

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Re: Hirst Molds
« Reply #10 on: June 12, 2009, 02:42:32 PM »
I both really like it, and kinda don't.

Not sure why - I think it could be the colours used that don't sit quite right with me...
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Offline Captain Tineal

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Re: Hirst Molds
« Reply #11 on: June 12, 2009, 02:53:21 PM »
I both really like it, and kinda don't.

Not sure why - I think it could be the colours used that don't sit quite right with me...

It is the orange bricks that throw me off... otherwise, it is looking great!
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Offline Dihenydd

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Re: Hirst Molds
« Reply #12 on: June 12, 2009, 03:01:29 PM »
Probably looks better in person.

One thing I've noticed about placing the flagstones, especially with fieldstone is to offset the squares by using the 1/2"x1" stone on alternate rows.  It breaks up the seams quite nicely.  Also, when priming blocks use LOTS of paint and then brush it out so the details are easily visible but the gaps and small holes (if any) get filled with paint to act as a bit of a 'mortar' effect.  That way when you wash and highlight/drybrush your details all come out looking great but the seams etc are quite hidden.

Or you go the other way and use decorative pavers/flagstones in-between the larger ones and actually accentuate the lines by design.

Sometimes the "Old Ones" just need to leave.....

Offline Nicholas Ironfist

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Re: Hirst Molds
« Reply #13 on: June 12, 2009, 09:50:11 PM »
LOL ya it was a first attempt...and it sucks. The flagstone tiles are a bad colour...I was going for terracotta. I had no spray so I had to brush on undercoat, this with pca glue didn't cover as well as I hoped. I was very happy with the water however, I liked the colour but I will add more gloss next time.

Next time I'll spray the bricks before I put them together. Any suggestions on stone colour and flagstone colour cause I'm lost with both?
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Offline Khunag

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Re: Hirst Molds
« Reply #14 on: June 13, 2009, 06:26:30 AM »
Very nice :)

The orange bircks look kinda glossy (i might be the picture though), buy some cheap matt black spray paint for undercoat (so the plaster between the bricks is not visible) and some clear matt one and spray the whole thing with it, should gain a lot.

Painting each brick individually would take ages, there's no point  :icon_razz:
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Quote from: rufus sparkfire
No matter where you go, there's always a Polish guy waiting to tell you all about winged hussars.  :icon_razz:

Offline Mathi Alfblut

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Re: Hirst Molds
« Reply #15 on: June 13, 2009, 08:24:36 AM »
Lovely stuff, Nicolas!
Oh, and remember GW made it personal, not you!

Offline Midaski

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Re: Hirst Molds
« Reply #16 on: June 13, 2009, 08:56:49 AM »
I think it looks great .............

There are some suggestions on Bruc's site about 'painting' bricks - involving stains and I believe even shoe polish!

I suspect it is one area where 'dipping' liquids for example, followed by some dry-brushing would be very effective.

One brick at a time - and especially before you build - is way too long winded for me.

I am sure that orange could be 'dimmed down' with a darkish stain.

Quote from: Gneisenau
Quote
Metal to Finecast - It is mostly a swap of medium. 

You mean they will be using Ouija boards instead of Tarot cards for their business plans from now on?

Offline der Hurenwiebel

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Re: Hirst Molds
« Reply #17 on: June 18, 2009, 05:05:16 PM »
or you could add pigment to the plaster.  the model railroad guys have this stuff in 2l milk type containers.  Several different colors and tones as well you could add pigments at different times of the mixing to get blends for a natural tone shift in things like stone.  Also as said before you can still paint or stain it afterwards.   
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