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After seeing Butterfish tins fo $7-8 each, I decided I want to make my own. Instead of buying one and copying it, how should I go about making a new mold? and what kind of putty can handle lead? Bondo?

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I think plaster should be ok. In high school I made things out of aluminum using plaster molds, but they were lost wax, so only one use per mold. There are lots of YouTube videos for making reusable soft plastic molds. You could take those concepts and apply it to plaster. 

 

The only thing I'm not sure of is if you would need to heat the mold to use it, to avoid bubbles and other malformations that happen when the lead cold too fast. Heating it in an oven probably won't hurt the plaster, but I couldn't say for sure. 

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I am all for doing things right from scratch and yes there are some youtubes that show the procedure using  POP or Durhams Water putty.  There are some silicone that can go to 700f so tin should be OK.

 

 

Or just get one of do-its lure molds, they have a number of shapes that should fit the bill. 

 

(ok probably not just one :) )

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Ive been wanting to make my own bucktails molds also, I am gonna contact a couple CNC shops that make molds and see if they will do a special order. 

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1 hour ago, norcalkat said:

Ive been wanting to make my own bucktails molds also, I am gonna contact a couple CNC shops that make molds and see if they will do a special order. 

Right now I see that the Alumilite Mold Putty and the Durhams Water Putty works. I will just need to make a 3d mold out of clay of the butterfish tin and bullet head bucktail jig I want to do. Should be fairly simple. haha. yeah right.

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On 10/20/2017 at 3:05 PM, Fishy Fisher said:

I think plaster should be ok. In high school I made things out of aluminum using plaster molds, but they were lost wax, so only one use per mold. There are lots of YouTube videos for making reusable soft plastic molds. You could take those concepts and apply it to plaster. 

 

The only thing I'm not sure of is if you would need to heat the mold to use it, to avoid bubbles and other malformations that happen when the lead cold too fast. Heating it in an oven probably won't hurt the plaster, but I couldn't say for sure. 

 

Plaster molds require that you dry the plaster completely after the plaster sets or you will have it explode on you when you pour hot metal into it.  It can take a week or more in a warm spot, like next to a furnace to dry it 100%.  I've had plaster molds that lasted for a few dozen pours and ones that lasted for only two pours.  Not the best material if you want durability.

Edited by clambellies

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15 mins ago, clambellies said:

 

Plaster molds require that you dry the plaster completely after the plaster sets or you will have it explode on you when you pour hot metal into it.  It can take a week or more in a warm spot, like next to a furnace to dry it 100%.  I've had plaster molds that lasted for a few dozen pours and ones that lasted for only two pours.  Not the best material if you want durability.

Well that's makes sense why it works well for lost wax molds. The mold goes into an oven to melt the wax out. I didn't realize, but it's probably also to dry the plaster. Good tip. Especially the safety part. 

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Bondo...use Bondo...it's not overly complicated. To heat it up before you pour you can use a candle...this also puts a thin layer of soot on the mold that helps release the lure. If you want to make it even tougher, use the fiberglass reinforced Bondo :th:

 

I've made dozens of molds with Bondo...it's much easier to work with than the silicone rubber...I had all kinds of issues making rubber molds when I tried :o

 

TimS

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1 hour ago, TimS said:

Bondo...use Bondo...it's not overly complicated. To heat it up before you pour you can use a candle...this also puts a thin layer of soot on the mold that helps release the lure. If you want to make it even tougher, use the fiberglass reinforced Bondo :th:

 

I've made dozens of molds with Bondo...it's much easier to work with than the silicone rubber...I had all kinds of issues making rubber molds when I tried :o

 

TimS

Thanks Tim, i will post photos of how it goes this winter.

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This is another great thread on tin, with good info on how to make a mold. Who knew one could use bondo for molds. I’m a do it yourself person so I may get some tin and give it a shot after some more research this winter. 

Thanks guys for this one, excellent. 

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11 hours ago, Mark L said:

This is another great thread on tin, with good info on how to make a mold. Who knew one could use bondo for molds. I’m a do it yourself person so I may get some tin and give it a shot after some more research this winter. 

Thanks guys for this one, excellent. 

I've been looking to buy some tin and it's pretty expensive. $20 for a pound. I wonder if a mixture would suffice (50/50 tin/lead). I've been drawing up designs for now to make a mold.

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I've been reading a lot on this topic since it came up. There is a lot of good information in the archives here. I haven't done any of this yet, so it's still all just theoretical for me, but mixing tin and lead is apparently perfectly fine. Just understand 2 things: your lure will be heavier and it won't shine as much. Tin is about 3/4ths the density of lead, so if you mix tin/lead 50/50, your lure will be 17% heavier than if tin only. I'm not really sure how that will affect performance in real life, but I do know that one reason people prefer tin over lead is that due to the lower density, it can be retrieved slower than lead. 

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37 mins ago, Fishy Fisher said:

I've been reading a lot on this topic since it came up. There is a lot of good information in the archives here. I haven't done any of this yet, so it's still all just theoretical for me, but mixing tin and lead is apparently perfectly fine. Just understand 2 things: your lure will be heavier and it won't shine as much. Tin is about 3/4ths the density of lead, so if you mix tin/lead 50/50, your lure will be 17% heavier than if tin only. I'm not really sure how that will affect performance in real life, but I do know that one reason people prefer tin over lead is that due to the lower density, it can be retrieved slower than lead. 

Awesome info. Fishy Fisher. Thanks! In the end, the tins would be powder coated or airbrushed and a light epoxy coat, or clear automotive coat. I would definitely be worried about the action and retrieve though, so maybe a 50/50 split would not work for what I'm trying to make (spoon style butterfish tin)

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