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Moughton Stone Holder

I've been thinking about packing the base for this while I mess around with my little one.

On my last one I used a thin layer of Blu-Tak, which worked rather well, but it was a smaller stone, and rectangular.

But what about molten candle wax as an idea? Pour it in, sit your stone in it and let it set. Easy as.
 
I've been thinking about packing the base for this while I mess around with my little one.

On my last one I used a thin layer of Blu-Tak, which worked rather well, but it was a smaller stone, and rectangular.

But what about molten candle wax as an idea? Pour it in, sit your stone in it and let it set. Easy as.

That's a very good idea actually. Pure beeswax sets very hard indeed - you can happily use it instead of epoxy to fit a knife handle for instance. Regular commercial candles are usually a bit softer, probably with other stuff mixed in. But beeswax I'm sure would work well. I rather like the sound of this option...
 
That's a very good idea actually. Pure beeswax sets very hard indeed - you can happily use it instead of epoxy to fit a knife handle for instance. Regular commercial candles are usually a bit softer, probably with other stuff mixed in. But beeswax I'm sure would work well. I rather like the sound of this option...
I think regular candles are mostly paraffin wax. But either option seems like it would do the job. I’ve not tried it yet, but it makes sense.
 
I think regular candles are mostly paraffin wax. But either option seems like it would do the job. I’ve not tried it yet, but it makes sense.

Ah! I wondered if that might be the case. I've played around with this kind of thing a while back; parrafin wax/regular candle wax goes a bit weird once you heat it up and then try to re-set it, it's really quite soft, and doesn't bond well to wood. Same with some of the waxes you can buy for shoes and boots. Pure beeswax is what you'd want I think.
 
Ah! I wondered if that might be the case. I've played around with this kind of thing a while back; parrafin wax/regular candle wax goes a bit weird once you heat it up and then try to re-set it, it's really quite soft, and doesn't bond well to wood. Same with some of the waxes you can buy for shoes and boots. Pure beeswax is what you'd want I think.
Cool. I have some in a container left over from another project somewhere. Never throw anything away.
 
Now normally when I get to this stage of a project (i.e. the difficult bit) I ignore it for a while, and put it up high on a shelf in the shed, so that after a while I can forget about it and move onto something else. Here for instance is something I just found hidden away in a drawer. Out of sight, out of mind.

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But unfortunately this time Davor Dave spurred me into action by completing his holder in record time, and doing a rather good job of it. Though he was disqualified for cheating, as he used a forster bit on drill press. But I started the thread, so for better or worse I'm going to have to see it through.

My main problem at this point is that I've never really used a bang-it-with-a-hammer chisel before for this kind of thing, so was learning on the go. Though I think it went alright, apart from a little bit near the slurry stone holder where I tried to be clever, and I broke it slightly in the same place and had to epoxy some wood back on:

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But after a bit of a tidy up with my posh Japanese hand chisel, and sanding down the insides a bit, I think it looks ok.

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I don't tend to use the stone in the holder, so this is just going to be an aesthetic thing, so I could just tidy it up a bit more and leave as is. But I think I am going to try filling it.

@Legion 's idea of using beeswax is a very good one, and would work well I think. But I don't have any pure beeswax atm, only this:

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And if you read the fine print on that; it's beeswax mixed with citrus oil, which means it doesn't set particularly hard, so can be rubbed into wood. What I do have though is my initial idea - Araldite. Which I like because I know how it behaves, and because I can colour it. Those little pots are mica poder and if I mix more of the green with a little bit of blue, I'm going to get a nice aquamarine colour which I think is going to set the Moughton off nicely round the edges.

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Do use epoxy glue like this for casting, you need to have it warm-ish. Which makes it runnier, with fewer air bubbles, but also means it sets quicker, so you have to be fast and precise in what you're doing. I'll also be oiling the sealed bottom and sides of the stone to prevent the epoxy bonding to it, so I can lift it out when the epoxy is set after a few mins, but not set completely hard. Wish me luck!
 
I'm probably as nervous about this as you are.

The Bees wax polish you have will put a nice finish on the wood when you are done.
 
So yeah... that didn’t work.

The problem is that even oiled epoxy bonds too well to stuff. To be able to pop the stone out ballsed up the shape of the mould. It may have worked if left longer, but would have been risky, so I pulled it out (tried on the slurry stone first)... Back to the drawing board then!

I still like the idea of the blue-green epoxy though - it would have looked very good. So I may just put a layer on the bottom, and then perhaps see if I can do one round the sides too. Which won’t be too tricky, and wouldn’t risk the holder or stones.

Here’s my mica mix ready for round 2:

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Yeah, that is what i was worried about. Or the colour staining the stone.

What you should do is put a single layer of cling film on the bottom of the stone, with as few wrinkles as possible.

If the cling film glues to the epoxy it should be a simple mater to sand it off.
 
Yeah, that is what i was worried about. Or the colour staining the stone.

What you should do is put a single layer of cling film on the bottom of the stone, with as few wrinkles as possible.

If the cling film glues to the epoxy it should be a simple mater to sand it off.

Oooh... This is another seriously good idea, I hadn’t thought of that. You’re at the top of your game DD!

I might actually try this first, as it’s very low risk option. Ta!
 

rbscebu

Girls call me Makaluod
It might be better to put your epoxy in, lay the cling wrap on top of the epoxy, then put your stone in and then press the stone down while the epoxy sets.
 
Another good idea from R above, but in the end I just went with a simple layer on the bottom and the sides. As a few people suspected originally - this kind of epoxy isn't particularly ideal for casting big stuff like this; it's very messy, it's very sticky, and even warm it's not really runny enough.

Which meant the bottom of the holder isn't particularly smooth:

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I don't really mind that tbh, makes it a little more 'textured' visually. I carved some of it out so the stone fitted exactly and without wobbling:

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Then sanded the whole thing down, including the epoxy bottom which I took back up to 2k. A little bit of oil and wax and here we go:

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The bottom isn't particularly perfect, so I may touch it up a bit from here. Though if doing a coloured fill on something like this again I would use casting epoxy rather than glue, or maybe just get better at chiselling and not bother with it at all.

Still I don't think it's too bad for a first effort from someone with f all woodworking ability, and no drill press or router. I tend to take stones out of their holder to use them, but the fit on the main stone is completely snug and level, so you could certainly use it in the base too. Overall I'm pretty happy - I don't think I've completely ballsed up a very lovely piece of wood too much.


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Little late to the game. Beautiful job, BTW. What I usually do when making a mold, or something similar to this; is spray the underside of a piece of cling wrap with non-stick coating, set sprayed-side down on wet epoxy, JB Weld, or the bonding agent of your choice, set the item (stone, in your case) on the goo--level it with an appropriate implement, and let it dry. After it cures, lift off the rock, wrap comes off readily, and the resulting indentation/"reservoir" is perfectly shaped and snug as a bug.

You did fine!
 
Little late to the game. Beautiful job, BTW. What I usually do when making a mold, or something similar to this; is spray the underside of a piece of cling wrap with non-stick coating, set sprayed-side down on wet epoxy, JB Weld, or the bonding agent of your choice, set the item (stone, in your case) on the goo--level it with an appropriate implement, and let it dry. After it cures, lift off the rock, wrap comes off readily, and the resulting indentation/"reservoir" is perfectly shaped and snug as a bug.

You did fine!

Ah cheers! Yeah I was pretty pleased for a first effort, I think they look fairly swish together :).

The oiled clingfilm method does sound like the way forward for next time though. Epoxy (especially glue) is just so messy when trying to cast big stuff!
 
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