The final stage of the sand casting was the most exciting because it involved heating up the aluminium to 600 degrees. The molten metal is pouring quickly into the mould after skimming the impurities off the top. The mould is then left over night to cool and harden. If you don’t let the metal cool probably and remove it from the the mould too quickly, it will break and the shape will change. This happens because to outside hardens quickly but the inner part of the mould is forming crystals which are very brittle until solid.
After the mould has solidified over night, we needed to bash the model out of the sand. I found it hard to get all of the sand out using a metal brush and a chisel but we were able to use a sand blaster. This is a machine which fires pressured grit at the work to remove sand which is embedded into the metal. However, I decided not to use it because it gives the metal a mate grey texture which I didn’t want. My tutor recommended I wash the sculpture to soak the sand out. My work did resemble an ants nest but not as much as I wanted. But it did remind me of a very complex maze with different paths similar to those women took to get the vote including hunger strikes, protests, hanging their bras in public and more extremely, jumping in front of horses.