Taking moulds

December 2013

Viewing posts from December , 2013

Taking moulds

With the clay complete, it’s time for taking moulds, and crack on with making some actual components.

To seal the clay, I sprayed the surface with shellac and then waxed it with mould release wax. This, as it turns out was not sufficient to ensure anything approaching a clean release of the mould! I’ll let the pictures tell the story of the laminating process.

Walls for mould splits.

Walls for mould splits.

Clay, ready to mould

The “bodywork” is to be moulded as a separate part to the airbox cover. The walls are made to create the division between each part of the 4 piece mould.

Gelcoat going on

Just ignore the blood on my overalls…

Laminating done on the first part of the mould, and it’s on with the second part.

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20131201_191006 Following the curing of the mould, it was time to remove it from the clay. Which was easier said than done….. Well, actually breaking the mould apart wasn’t a particular problem, just cleaning the clay out of the mould was a pain. In case you ever find yourself in this position, the easiest way is to chip out the worst, and then heat it with the heat gun and wipe it out with a rag. The application of plenty of beer helps too.

Removing the mould

Destroying all your hard clay work is surprisingly cathartic!

 

Before and after cleaning

Before and after cleaning

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After the moulds for the bodywork part were removed and cleaned up, it was time to get a fibreglass bodywork part made…

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…and then clean up the airbox cover/speedo housing, and take a mould from that.

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The boxy bit at the front by the headstock is actually the location for the LiPo battery.

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I won’t dwell too much on the production and development of this airbox cover, since it was ultimately a dead-end that took a lot of time and effort before being ultimately scrapped! However, in brief…

The design never really worked visually, in part because of the LiPo battery location in the front of the airbox, which created this slabby box area at the front. Also it turned out there were major issues with getting the speedo housing into place! These two factors led to a redesign and an improvement by moving the battery to a new location between the frame and the engine. This improved things visually, but something still looked odd with this thing sticking out the top of the bike… For this and several other reasons relating to the display, I decided that this whole area should be simplified, and a more “normal” speedo located further forwards, in a more “normal” location. But that’s a story for another day.

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