Jewelry casting is an art form that has been in existence for thousands of years. Since the time that man attained the ability to melt metal, artisans have been pouring molten gold into cavities shaped in stone, plaster, sand, and cuttlefish bone. The solidified castings were then pried, or broken free from the encasements in which they were poured by primitive craftsman who then tooled them into items of adornment.
With the advent of high-frequency melting and a host of other technologies, jewelry casting is more dynamic than ever. Most jewelry casting is done through the lost-wax process, whereby models created through wax carving, growing, or printing are encased in a plaster-like medium known as investment. The investment is heated to extreme temperatures to incinerate the material, creating an impression of the desired form. The intricate cavity is then filled with molten precious metal.
Are you creating a jewelry line? You might have heard of jewelry casting. Jewelry casting, or lost wax casting, can only be done by jewelry manufacturers, but it is still good to be prepared to work with them, at CMJ we take the pain out of this process for you.
Most jewelry that is manufactured starts off as a wax pattern. Jewelry manufacturers will take the wax pattern and use plaster to create an “invested” mold.
Once the mold is prepared, jewelry makers will put the mold into the oven until the plaster hardens.
In the oven, all of the wax will melt out of the hollow cavity inside of a mold of wax pattern. (The cavity for the mold is set when setting up the wax pattern.)
With a wax-free mold, manufacturers will then pour molten metal or silver into the hallow cavity that is in the mold with a vacuum machine or a centrifugal casting machine.
After a few minutes, jewelry makers will throw the mold into a bucket of cold water and mold will dissipate. You will then be able to reach in and pull out a piece of jewelry that is the exact replica as the initial wax pattern.
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