casting work

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todd goff
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casting work

Post by todd goff » Fri Jan 01, 2010 3:51 pm

I was wondering if anyone could give me some good ideas as to how to pick up some casting work. I like casting aluminum, brass and bronze but it doesn't seem like this is in demand very much anymore (or maybe I don't know where to look to find work of this nature). I am doing some small jobs right now but they are only 3 or 4 pieces on each job and this just isn't cutting it. I would love to pick up some squeezer work running about 1 or 200 pieces (just basically lost my part time job due to the great economy so I have got to find something to do). I have some fairly large furnaces so a casting that weighs about 10 or 12 # in aluminum would be something that is doable and a brass or bronze casting that weighs 30 or 40 # would also be within my capabilities. I have been toying with the idea of making mailbox toppers, ash trays, cast aluminum animals such as horses, dogs, and bears or maybe even some fire dogs. I also have some patterns for grave markers for veterans and was wondering if there may be a demand for these. Just out of curiousity would someone be willing to pay 20 bucks for a cast aluminum mailbox topper? I am racking my brains here and don't have a clue; I don't know much about cores but am looking to get 2 core machines within the next month (finally) and have even thought about trying to cast intake manifolds, or maybe even some aluminum ford 9" differential housings. I am not going to give up, but it does get discouraging when things don't seem to ever work out. My wife says for my new years resolution I should have a more positive outlook but it's kind of hard when that so and so murphy won't ever leave you alone; his law stinks (lol). :?:

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Post by STRR » Fri Jan 01, 2010 4:06 pm


How about some photos of what you want to sell? The mailbox topper may not be the best idea since many people will only purchase a loco or train they like. I would be interested at the $20 range. Would like to see some photos.

You can peruse ebay and see what you might be able to sell there. Also think about contacting ebay sellers to see if they might be interested in buying your items to sell. Your price would be lower at something like wholesale but you would be getting something.

Brass or bronze bells should sell fairly well especially if they are in a scale people are building in, and if the price is reasonable. Sorry, I don't have a clue as to how to price them. I guess research on that would be in order.

Just some thoughts.

Good Luck,

todd goff
Posts: 128
Joined: Fri Jun 12, 2009 12:59 pm
Location: South Carolina

casting work

Post by todd goff » Fri Jan 01, 2010 4:16 pm

Thanks Terry, I will get some pics of some of the patterns that are out in the shop. Been sick with bronchitis and still fighting it so it may be a little while. I know I don't have any mailbox toppers with trains on them but that might be worth trying to make; I myself am a train nut and actually have a up bay window caboose in my yard (the wife would love to see it go away but at 23 tons it isn't happening). I had actually bought some patterns off of ebay about 5 years ago from a guy in columbus ohio and asked if he had any more. He told me that I needed to come see him and that it would be worth the trip so I did. To make a long story short I wound up making 2 trips and getting 2 pickup truck loads of patterns, flasks and I can't remember what else. There was everything from piggy banks, ash trays, animals, at least 40 or 50 mailbox toppers and even some plaques (one has a horse on it but nobody wants to pay 45 bucks for a plaque that weighs 8 or 10 #). Anyway, sorry to ramble on but I will send you some pics when I get to feeling better and might even try to make a train mailbox topper. This kind of work gets in your blood like a disease and if you ever do it one time you are hooked. Happy new year and talk to you soon.

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Post by steamin10 » Fri Jan 01, 2010 7:17 pm

Get to work, and cast everything you have and can make sense of. Then Photo it into an online catalogue. Dont just make the pieces, study the time and get the motions down for making all the parts. This will be a learning curve. Get things organized and put in a coupla days doing nothing but casting.

When you are done with this excercise, you should know all the numbers of fuel used , how many minutes to mold up, cast out and trim your pieces. This all relates to money, and its not what you have, but what you have left, that will determine your success or failure. An online presence is handy to have, and can be hosted by your server, or a hiree like Go Daddy. They are cheep and wont tie your computer up, or you can host yourself, with a stand-alone machine, depends on your service available.

I do not have my space setup, so I am not running metal now. Anything I do would be a onesy -twosey thing for myself, to keep my projects from being static. I am too wide on my interests, and need to focus to get to the meat of any one deal. Right now that is my sagging career. Casting and other hobby things, may become part of Plan B.
Big Dave, former Millwright, Electrician, Environmental conditioning, and back yard Fixxit guy. Now retired, persuing boats, trains, and broken relics.
We have enough youth, how about a fountain of Smart. My computer beat me at chess, but not kickboxing
It is not getting caught in the rain, its learning to dance in it. People saying good morning, should have to prove it.

todd goff
Posts: 128
Joined: Fri Jun 12, 2009 12:59 pm
Location: South Carolina

Post by todd goff » Fri Jan 01, 2010 7:58 pm

Thanks Terry and Dave; those are some good ideas that yall had. As soon as I get these other casting jobs done I am going to work on making some castings off of the patterns that I have and try to do an online catalog. Most of the patterns are mounted on match plates and can be run on the squeezer machines so I should be able to do a fairly reasonable volume of molds per day or at least I hope. Some of these patterns can be tricky to mold if you know what I mean. Thanks for the ideas again everyone and I hope yall have a happy new year.

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casting work question

Post by joshuaj97 » Sun Feb 28, 2010 2:28 pm

I'm looking into the possability of reproducin an aluminumn racing water pump. The original manufacturer is out of business, We have a brand new casting, is that something you can cast a duplicate of maybe 50 of these. would your material machine nice? thanks josh

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Post by RONALD » Mon Mar 01, 2010 9:21 am

Todd, here is a show that you may find of interest. They usually have many small regional casting companies in attendance. If you go, you will be amazed at the variety of castings that are made.

The closest show to you, is in Atlanta, in about three weeks. It's free to attend.

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Re: casting work

Post by pelletman » Mon Apr 12, 2010 9:31 pm

What are you casting in? Sand?

todd goff
Posts: 128
Joined: Fri Jun 12, 2009 12:59 pm
Location: South Carolina

Re: casting work

Post by todd goff » Tue Apr 13, 2010 6:46 am

Yeah, I cast in sand but only do aluminum, brass and bronze. I am basically one of your backyard metalcasters that is trying to get my foot in the door and pick up some work and wish that it would grow into something larger than just a hobby.

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