Sunday, May 10, 2015

A big day at the foundary

For those of you following this blog from the beginning, you may remember a post about the foundary.  We contracted them to do the stairs, railings, and a metal catwalk which will together will make one of the central features of TerraPlana.

Yesterday, we went out to the foundry to watch while they poured some of our pieces.

That's our walkway heated to 1500°! We got to watch the whole process from start to finish.

First, they start with a mold:

On the mold, they pack some special sticky sand supper tight so that the sand remembers the molds shape, producing a negative of the same mold:

Then they spray it with something and light it on fire. Probably this is done to burn off impurities.  Then again, maybe it's just to look cool and play with fire, either way, it worked:

After that, they cover it with a block of sand that contains some holes to pour in the metal. All the time that this is going on, they are cooking scrap metal in a huge furnace:

They told us that the metal melts at around 1200° but to make sure it is liquid enough, they continue heating it to about 1500°. When it's hot enough, they tip the furnace into a cistern, and then pour it into the mold:

Once it cools, they shake off the sand and lift out the final piece:

And that's how a pile of scrap metal becomes a walkway in a bar. Of course, it was incredibly cool to watch this process first hand. We can't wait to see the ironwork installed in the bar, but I will never forget seeing it in liquid form!  Thanks to everyone at CIF!

And now, for some videos:

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