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Hints, Tips and Solutions (Do NOT post requests for help here) If you have any useful general hints and tips for vintage technology repair and restoration, please share them here. PLEASE DO NOT POST REQUESTS FOR HELP HERE!

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Old 5th Feb 2004, 11:44 pm   #1
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: Salt Spring Island, BC, Canada
Posts: 364
Default Casting Bronze on the Kitchen Table

Last year I was in correspondence with a fellow radio restorer. We were both rebuilding the same fairly rare 1931 radio. I had just completed mine but he had a serious problem - his radio was lacking the bronze escutcheon around the small frequency dial.
I wondered how to help besides sending him a photo of my escutcheon so he could recognise one if he came across it. When I was on a visit to the local hobby store, I stopped to study a shelf of what appeared to be solid bronze statuettes but they were not really solid bronze. It turns out that you can make a synthetic rubber mold around the statuette you made from easily carved plaster or wood, or even just an object you want to copy. The mold is then split, and the empty halves reassembled and the cavity filled with a polyester fibreglass resin mix loaded with bronze powder. Here was the solution to the problem. I decided to use a simple one-sided mold technique for my escutcheon and cast a copy. My friend thought at first I had sent him my original.
This cast escutcheon had the appearance and weight of real bronze and had adequate strength for the job. Every detail was faithfully reproduced. The polyester resin, bronze powder and the synthetic rubber for the mold were all available at the hobby store.
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