Re: Another update about my brass beads, and a sad one/Thoughts
Re: Another update about my brass beads, and a sad one. -- Luann Udell Post Reply Edit Forum Where am I?
Posted by: AnneLFG Post Reply
05/20/2021, 00:34:18

Posted twice- also in the other related thread, sorry..

As you know the African Brass/Bronze Lost Wax bead method often involves carefully piecing threads of wax over a clay core- especially the hollow "filigree" looking beads. The wax bead construction may be coated/dipped first in a or several slurries of (charcoal &) clay and then packed carefully in clay which will make the outer one time mold.

EDIT- I should also add that the wax is removed by heating leaving through ports, and that the brass/bronze is then poured into the casting shape left by the wax through a hole or holes. The inner bead clay core remains at that point in the center of the bead. Oversimplified version..

Usually this inner clay core is broken up and expelled after the casting is cooled (?) and is broken open. You have to ask WHY the clay core did not break up? Why was the core retained? Was it a "bad" clay that solidified too much, and maybe had some extra and unusual mineral content (which may account for the white precipitate).

I do see some other similar Igbo Lost Wax Brass/Bronze beads that are retaining the clay core in a similar manner, though not turning white.

If you have a diamond tip bit for Dremel type drill are you able to clamp down a bead or two and drill the white/black core out? Is it too hard all the way through? Does it begin to break up at all? I think the odd composition of the clay core material is what is at the root of the problem.

Good luck- this is frustrating but you can figure it out, Anne

Bead lover, collector since Age 15, semi-retired had wholesale/retail bead, folk art, tribal art store Lost and Found Gallery for 25 yrs. in DT Greensboro, NC

Modified by AnneLFG at Thu, May 20, 2021, 23:08:38

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