DIY Epoxy Casting Mold From ScratchFélice Vandenabeele
Preparation and guidelines
While there are a lot of beginner projects that don’t require the use of a mold, there will come a time when you will need to make your own custom mold. There are some silicone molds available in stores and online for various projects such as coasters, and jewelry. However, if you want a custom piece, you will want to know how to quickly make your own forms & molds from scratch. Since the mold is one is crucial to producing high-quality pieces. You will want to make sure your mold is made correctly before you move on to the pouring phase. Here we have compiled some tips and tricks to help you design, prepare and build the perfect mold for all your epoxy resin projects to come.
There are plenty of materials you can choose to make your mold out of. We recommend using melamine or plywood. Design and set up your mold on a flat work surface, to prevent an unlevel final product.
Other Essential Materials for this Project:
- Melamine / plywood
- Sheathing tape
- Hot glue or silicone caulk
- Nitrile gloves
You will want to cut your mold materials to your desired width, length and depth. These measurements will vary depending on the project as well as the piece of wood you are using. Make sure the depth of the mold is a bit bigger than the thickness of your desired resin pour depth. This allows a little wiggle room when you go to de-mold your project later. However, for some projects such as this DIY coaster, it is recommended you make the mold just a bit thinner than the thickness of your wood pieces. This method will require you to do additional sanding afterwards.
Before you begin screwing the mold together, you will need to tape all the surfaces that are going to be on the inside of your mold with sheathing tape. Be sure to overlap each layer of tape so that none of the epoxy poured can stick to the plywood or melamine underneath.
PRO TIP: Sheathing tape will also make sure that your epoxy does not stick to the mold once your epoxy has dried, allowing for an easier de-molding later on.
Once every surface of the mold is lined with tape, then secure your mold together with screws of clamps. Make sure your mold is tightly put together, because any gaps can lead to leakage.
PRO TIP: It’s best not to use too many nails, because you will have a harder time taking the mold apart later.
Ensuring Your Mold is Leak-free
It is still possible even after following the previous steps that the epoxy resin will get leach into the cracks of your current mold (which is not what we want). In order to prevent your mold from leaking you will need to seal your mold from the inside as well. This can easily be achieved by running a bead of hot glue or 100% silicone in all of the seams and corners within the form itself.
PRO TIP: Wearing nitrile gloves, use your fingers to gently level off the excess silicone and work it deeper into the seams.
Clean Out the Mold Before Use
Before you begin using your mold, you want to make sure it is clean and dust free. This can be accomplished with a vacuum cleaner followed by a wet paper towel. Small dust particles lurk within all wood crevices and those pesky particles can get trapped in your epoxy pour later. These dust particles appear as air bubbles within your final piece, which is not what we want.
We hope this was helpful and that you attempt your own custom epoxy resin mold soon.