Yuwake; casting molten metal into hot water.

Yuwake; casting molten metal into hot water.

Postby Ford » Fri Jul 29, 2011 5:38 pm

This is a short clip of metal casting the traditional Japanese way. Brad and I did this some months ago as part of the film we're working on now. We used 2 camera so we have 2 views of the same action and we chose to do it in the dark because it looks so much more dramatic that way...and anyone can do it in the light ;)

The roar at the end and the sound like thunder is exactly what happened, no special sound effects added. There's a background hum throughout the clip, that was the extractor fan in my studio.

Here's a link.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NDzBswHxr7s

Bet you can't wait to see the whole film now. :smartass:
"The artist yields often to the stimuli of materials that will transmit his spirit." Odilon Redon
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Re: Yuwake; casting molten metal into hot water.

Postby Kevin » Fri Jul 29, 2011 5:51 pm

More please :biggrin:
The "silly question" is the first intimation of some totally new development...
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Re: Yuwake; casting molten metal into hot water.

Postby Ford » Fri Jul 29, 2011 6:00 pm

You're insatiable :biggrin: ....I'll do a little film of some other stuff tomorrow and may be able to show you a 2 min sneak preview of another section on Monday. :sneaky:
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Re: Yuwake; casting molten metal into hot water.

Postby Kevin » Fri Jul 29, 2011 6:04 pm

:cheerleader: :banana: :bouncy: :froggy: :bounce: :penguin2:
The "silly question" is the first intimation of some totally new development...
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Re: Yuwake; casting molten metal into hot water.

Postby tsterling » Fri Jul 29, 2011 8:22 pm

Very cool process, Ford! I enjoyed watching (and listening) very much - thanks for posting it. More, please!

Small question - how deep is the water over the canvas?
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Re: Yuwake; casting molten metal into hot water.

Postby Mark Green » Fri Jul 29, 2011 9:19 pm

I love that roar at the end of the cool down. It's a special sound like no other.
Then you get to see what you have. It is very exciting.

I learned all my Japanese alloy skills from Ford's pics. Well before we ever got to see it live, I had paid very close attention to his pictorial. And, with a bit of help from the gang, and a lot of luck, I was able to create a good bit of Shibuichi, shakudo, and dirty copper. It is a kind of fun you can only have when you are doing something like this. It is very special in many ways.

Ford, you have carried forth a unique skill in alloy casting. A nearly lost art. Now there is a bit of a revival. IT WAS ALL YOU!
And the Masters that handed it down to your Masters.
You know better than anyone, that it isn't just the knowledge of the process that matters. There are thousands of variables that go on with every smelt. It is the experience, of how to control these variables, that only come with doing and experimentation and the special hints passed on by masters like you, that allow true success with these metals.

I remember when I first cast some successful ingots, I asked you how common it was in Japan. You said that there were very few people in the world still making tsuba ingots in this way. And, after doing a half dozen "pounding down the mountains"
I understood why. Very few people in this modern world are willing, or able, to do this process. It takes a real passion to do this. You turned me on to that passion of the world of Japanese alloys, and for that I will always be grateful.

You released this knowledge back into the world with your Tiger vids. There are likely many artists in this world now playing with Japanese water casting. Most are not likely doing it right, but knowledge that was nearly lost to time, has been returned to the world. When your dvd's come out, many more will try. Some will get the passion to continue, others will find it far to difficult to get right.. But those that do, will make it a much less lost art then it was.

You should be proud of that. :clap: :clap:

Gee, just thinking about it makes me want to melt some copper ;) It's all your fault. :devilish:

Keep up the good work of educating the world to nearly lost arts.

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Re: Yuwake; casting molten metal into hot water.

Postby Ford » Fri Jul 29, 2011 9:42 pm

Hi Tom,

good to hear from you. Hope all's ok with you.

The depth of the water is around 7 to 10cm.

More to come shortly 8)
tsterling wrote:Very cool process, Ford! I enjoyed watching (and listening) very much - thanks for posting it. More, please!

Small question - how deep is the water over the canvas?
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Re: Yuwake; casting molten metal into hot water.

Postby Ford » Fri Jul 29, 2011 10:00 pm

Hey Sir Mark :biggrin:

A BIG thank you to you. It's funny, one of Oscar defenders, also a student at the Kingstom University, implied that there wasn't much of a camaraderie in the world of crafts. However, our community, here, refutes that lie. I've always been clear about my desire to share and support others who are turned on to the same stuff as me. All I expect is a little, common, courtesy.

I know I come across as being a bit of a hard arse at times but anyone who I've spent time with will tell you ( I hope :? ) that I really do care...and will bend over backwards to help anyone who is genuine and sincere in their efforts.
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Re: Yuwake; casting molten metal into hot water.

Postby tsterling » Fri Jul 29, 2011 10:16 pm

Ford wrote:Hi Tom,

good to hear from you. Hope all's ok with you.

The depth of the water is around 7 to 10cm.

More to come shortly 8)


Hi Ford,

I'm doing fine, just busy. Thanks for the answer about the depth. :sunny:

Am I correct in thinking the depth of the water plays a fairly critical role? Too deep, and the metal cools too much on the way down and may not consolidate well into a single mass, and too shallow may cause it to solidify too quickly by allowing the steam blanket to separate from the metal too early?
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Re: Yuwake; casting molten metal into hot water.

Postby Ford » Fri Jul 29, 2011 10:42 pm

Tom,

I don't really think it's all that critical but obviously too much will possibly cause problems, too little may simply create too much agitation. No-one has ever done any tests to establish the perfect perimeters as yet ;) so my feeling is that it's a narrow window we're aiming for.
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Re: Yuwake; casting molten metal into hot water.

Postby Mark Green » Sat Jul 30, 2011 1:22 am

For me, the 8-10 cm seems perfect. One of the key elements seems to be a good size pot. I have 3, 'good will ' special, Revere ware, copper bottom pots. One is tall, large, one just reg large, one extra-large reg sides. The extra large pot seems to make the best ingots. The tapping that Ford does in his vid. is a good idea. The next best is the tall. About the size of Master Fords, I guess.
I found, a Formed shallow cotton covered mold, is better, then a large cradle type. Unless you are very experienced with the pore, and know just the right tension, on the cloth. It can save a pile on the forging, or just save you period. The saggy mold gets you ugly art.
The absolute most important thing, is the charcoal cover of your smelt. If you are successful at keeping out most of the 0, your alloy will be like butta to forge! Sort of ;)
It takes some experimenting. The good thing is, that it is all re-smelt-able. I have cut up many an ugly ingot. It is not an easy thing to get right. Just like anything, it takes some thought, and practice. Be ready for some flops. Don't get discouraged, think about what went wrong, or ask, Someone here, is likely to help. Take lots of pics. that way you can keep track of what went wrong, or right. :biggrin:

Shibuichi is so wonderful. It's like carving gold! :sunny:

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Re: Yuwake; casting molten metal into hot water.

Postby tsterling » Sat Jul 30, 2011 3:32 pm

Thanks for the insights, Ford and Mark.

I hadn't thought about the tension of the canvas hammock - obviously the smelting kami want a comfortable place to lie. :rolleyes:
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Re: Yuwake; casting molten metal into hot water.

Postby James B » Sun Jul 31, 2011 6:28 pm

Hi Ford,

Have you ever seen an explosion from the Yuwake pouring process? I was called by an acquaintance who was casting shakudo and he asked me if I had ever had this happen. I said no, I have never heard of this happening. A month later I went down to his studio and we tried the process using his setup to see what was going on. We melted in a clay crucible with a torch. I held the torch and he poured the metal into the water. As he did so there was a very loud detonation and the metal was dispersed as a fine powder ( a quite beautiful red coating settled on the white canvas at the bottom of the water pot) No one was hurt but our ears were ringing. What I saw as he was pouring was a drop of water shot up from the surface of the pot as he started his pour and the water landed in the crucible, That was when the detonation occurred. I presume this was a steam explosion from the water instantly flashing to steam. As this was a small pour of around 2 oz there was little meta to hurt anyone but in a larger pour I presume this could be quite different. Anyhow I wondered if you were aware of this and if you had any special precautions to take while pouring?

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Re: Yuwake; casting molten metal into hot water.

Postby Matti » Sun Jul 31, 2011 10:27 pm

Hello!

Great videos! Can't wait to see the rest!! :sneaky2:

And can't wait to get to try these castings myself..!

I don't have personal experience on those explosions, but I've heard stories.

At our school many years ago a student had been making some castings. She was using a 8kg crucible, so she had pretty much metal in it, bronze I think. Just before pouring she added last bit of phosphous copper in it, without preheating it. That bit had some moisture in it and when she dropped it in, there was an explosion and all the liquid metal went airborne. Luckily she had had all the safety equipment on so nothing serious happened. She did get some metal on her head that burned scalp and some hair off. But it could have been very serious.

Second story was from my teacher who used to have business of his own. He was doing melts in a rather small room that got very hot when doing larger melts. Just as he was ready to pour he wiped sweat off his forehead with a back of his hand a drop of sweat fell into the crucible. Same thing, boom and the crucible was empty. No injuries this time either. He told that it's due to a hydrogen explosion. Rapidly vaporizing water breaks down to hydrogen and oxygen and then ignites.

He had some experience of them when working in a factory that melt down scrap steel also.

- Matti
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Re: Yuwake; casting molten metal into hot water.

Postby Mark Green » Sun Jul 31, 2011 10:37 pm

James,
Hi. Was the water very hot? Whenever you pour molten metal into water, it needs to be near boiling.
If the water is cold, you can almost count on bad things happening.
With your fiends mishap, it was just a case of being too close to the water I guess. Water jumping into the hot crucible with molten alloy does not sound fun. I'm glad no one was burned.
I have had a graphite crucible full of shibuichi break free from the tongues and hit the water. Nothing exploded, but hot alloy went flying everywhere. I was picking BB sized pieces out of the lawn for an hour.
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