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Smooth On silicone?

1905 Views 9 Replies 7 Participants Last post by  Its the Great Pumpkin
I just got back from the Walker Stalker Con and there was a booth promoting a product called Smooth-On silicones for mold making. I brought a catalog home and was flipping through. Is anyone familiar with it and is it as easy as it looks??
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I'm a professional mold-maker and caster, and am familiar with a few brands of tin-cure mold rubber. Most Smooth-On materials are good stuff, although often pricier than alternatives unless you can visit a Reynolds Advanced Materials store in person and take shipping out of the equation. A Reynolds sales rep regularly visits my workplace and hopes to get my boss to try out Mold Max, but my boss is a big fan of GTProducts.

The Smooth-On starter kits are pretty good deals for amateur mold-makers. They come with enough materials and information to get you rolling.

I most recently purchased silicone from MPK Enterprises, which I've liked in the past and the price is attractive.

What are you molding? And what casting materials will you use? Perhaps I can suggest some alternatives. I'm primarily involved in silicone molding to make resin castings, but I have a passing familiarity with other methods as well.
Oh, as for the "easy" part of things, that depends on where you're starting from. The flashy Smooth-On catalogues make it all look like fun and just about anyone can make a basic mold, but it's easy to get it wrong. The initial financial outlay will also add up because, in addition to the mold rubber, you're likely to need modeling clay, sculpting tools and probably a couple other things. If you're already familiar with this, please forgive my ignorance.
I've actually never molded anything in my life which is why I ask. The rep of course made it look exceptionally easy to use. Honestly, I'm not sure where i was heading with this, maybe start small with some hands or skulls. It's completely new territory for me but I have plenty of time to play around before Halloween creeps up. Thank you Todd for your input, you clearly know your stuff!!
I strongly recommend your first mold be of latex. Mold Builder, available at your local Michaels is available for ~$8 with one of those weekly ad coupons. It's enough to make a skull mold, and cheap enough it's not a killer if you mess up.


Once you get a little practice, it might pay to move on to silicone, especially if you're working with resins or casting a lot of items.
If you do live near a Reynolds Advanced Materials location, check out their schedule of training classes. Ours, in Denver, offers Saturday classes in basic molding and casting.
Recentley i tried my hand at making molds, i'm still new to it and i'm only doing it with the latex kit and it is probably your best bet when your a newbie to it like me.
I agree with the suggestions to try latex molding, and to visit a Reynolds seminar if one is within range. I also use the Denver store and it's neat.

We use latex at work to make very large molds. The material is inexpensive, lightweight, and very strong if reinforced with cheesecloth or burlap.
About Smooth-On, again depending on where you live, they are located in eastern Pa and do a 2 day workshop once a month (see web site).
At the National Haunters Convention (valley Forge PA) they have had a booth for the last several years and this past spring they did several seminars with some hands on. In the seminars, they stressed, CALL them to discuss what you are trying to do and they will help you chose the RIGHT materials to make the mold and make the casting. Also the web site has tons of videos. I hope that helps.
I have been ordering from Smooth on for over 2 years now. Love them! Can't beat their customer service or their products. As other members have mentioned here U would not go head first into silicone. Just because it's Expensive!!!! And you really should know how to make proper molds before you use any. Latex is a great way to start( that's what I did). Plus it's a heck of a lot cheaper than silicone. There are several DVDs out there that help with the molding process involving latex. Standard Molds and Casting is a great one to start with. Once you get the hang of working with latex and sculpting then you can graduate to working with silicone. I use it regularly with some of my props. Just gives it that lifelike effect and feel!this is a Mrs Voorhees Silicone head I did sometime last year. Good luck!


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