Introduction: Mini Melting Foundry
* CAN REACH 1832℉*
*NEEDS A CRUCIBLE TO OPERATE*
* RUNS OFF OF CHARCOAL BRIQUETTES*
A mini melty foundry is used to melt light metals like aluminum or copper, for casting.
A crucible is a container that goes in the center that holds the melted metal.
Plaster of Paris
5 Gallon bucket
10 Quart bucket
2 ½ Quart bucket
10 Quart metal bucket
3” Hole saw
1” Hole saw
Two 4” U Bolts
Two feet of 1” PVC tubing
One 1” PVC coupling
One foot of 1” Threaded steel tubing
Rocks, sand or water for step 4.
Mix equal parts, 21 cups, of plaster of Paris and play sand in the 5 gallon bucket, and make sure to mix it thoroughly.
Add 15 cups of water to the mixture. Mix quickly as the mixture sets within 15 minutes once water touches the surface. Use your hand to mix, this makes it easier to get all the little clumps broken down.
Carefully pour the mixture into the 10 quart metal bucket as slowly as possible to help prevent splattering.
Take the 2 ½ quart bucket filled with rocks, sand or water to give it some weight.
Place the bucket into the center of the mixture, as you push the bucket down the mixture will rise up, but shouldn’t overflow. Move the bucket up and down a bit to help level it before it sets.
Hold the bucket still for about a minute or two so the plaster has time to harden enough that you can let go.
Clean up the bucket using a wet washcloth then let the mixture cure for an hour.
While the foundry is curing it’s time to make the lid. Using 5 cups of plaster of paris and play sand, add 3 ½ cups of water and mix quickly. We used the 10 quart bucket to form the lid.
Place the two 4” U bolts on opposite sides of the bucket and hold upright. Hold for a couple minutes so the plaster can harden and you can remove your hands. Let cure for an hour.
After an hour the foundry will be set and you will want to pull the 2 ½ quart bucket out. You should be able to pull it out with just your hands.
Time to start drilling, using the 1” hole saw and power drill, place the drill bit about 3 inches from the top of the bucket. Once you get through the metal bucket drill down at a 30 degree angle. Be sure not to drill into the bottom of the foundry, that can cause issues if your crucible fails, which would shoot molten aluminum out the air supply vent.
After the lid has hardened for an hour it should easily pop out of the bucket when you pull it. Next we are going to use the 3” hole saw and power drill to drill out a hole for ventilation. Place the drill bit in the center of the lid in between the two U bolts and drill down, you might have to drill from the top and the bottom to get through.
Let’s make the air supply vent, for this you will use the 1 ft 1” threaded steel piping and attach the PVC coupling to one end, then you will put the 2 ft of 1” PVC piping into the other end of the coupling.
Now, let your foundry set completely for 24 hours. Get a crucible and you are now good to start melting aluminum.