Introduction: The Lion Head! a Wax Mold Tutorial.

Alternative title: The Lions Head! (wasn't sure which sounded more righter)

I decided to create a wax mold of a Lion head for a project I am working on. Instead of sending all these pictures to my supportive friends (Scott and Jared this is for one of the greatest couples I know) I thought it was time to contribute to this awesome site.

Step 1: Find a Model

Found an inexpensive Lion toy at the dollar store and then I cut its head off (just realized this may have been inspired some what by Game of Thrones).

Draw a parting line down the middle which will help you later on.

Step 2: Container, Dough, Tube and Pressto

I took a food container and cut the bottom portion off. I filled it with play dough about half way up and placed in a cake pan in case of spillage for the plaster part.

I then connected a tube to the model for the wax to pour into. I made this twice and the wax came out much better when I used the battery, so anything about that wide will work.

Important: Take a pen or a battery and make about 4 indentations around the corners of the play dough. This will allow both parts to align together later.

The final step before the Plaster is to take a brush and some petroleum jelly and be generous when spreading it all over. This makes it very easy to remove the dough and model.

Step 3: Prep and Pour Plaster of Paris

When you have pressed the model down to the parting line and have spread that jelly get ready to pour the plaster.

Plaster of Paris needs 2 parts plaster to 1 part water and hardens in about 20-30 mins. For the first half of my container I used 1 1/2 cup of plaster and 3/4 cup of water. Mix well then pour in from the corner of the container, letting the plaster flow around the model the tap the tray so that the air bubbles rise to the top.

Step 4: Flip and Repeat

When the plaster hardens, flip it over, remove the dough, apply the jelly, mix the plaster, pour it in, tap and let it dry.

Step 5: Clean and Admire

Now to a very cool part of the process. After about 20 minutes, remove the entire piece from the container. I added jelly on the sides of the container to make it really easy. I then take the mold apart and admire the work. One side usually has the model attached, gently move it back and forth and it should come away from it.

Important: I cleaned out both parts of the mold and then reapplied the petroleum jelly which allowed all the detail to transfer to the wax after pouring, on my first try the wax and plaster stuck and removed all the details.

Step 6: Heat and Pour Wax

Once you have cleaned, rejellied (yup I just made that word work), and placed the mold parts back together, clamp it, put it over a tray, heat your wax and get ready to pour!.....go ahead and pour.

Step 7: Repeat the Clean and Admire Step

Let it cool for another 20 min and then slowly pull the mold apart. You should have a decent wax mold which can now be used for Lost Wax Casting (that would be a teaser for my next instructable).

This was a plethora of fun to do and I couldn't have done these and other projects without checking Instructables daily.

This whole project took about $14 not including wax and clamps.

Cost and List of Materials:

Container $1
Lion toy $1
Play dough $2
Tray $1
Plaster of Paris $7
Petroleum Jelly $1
Brush $1

Let me know if you have any questions in the comments.

- George