If you are lazy and don't want to read you can just watch the video ;)
In the written tutorial below you will find some more pictures and some more detailed information if needed!
Have Fun going through this tutorial and don't forget to leave a comment below if you liked the tutorial or have more questions ;)
Step 1: Mother Mould
For this project I've used a mould I had from another tutorial to make the Carbonfiber YouTube Button, If you want to see how I did that you can watch the video or read my other instructable on following link
Step 2: Making the Aluminium Epoxy Cast (why?!)
You can skip this test if you want to:
If you already have a piece you want to reproduce in glow in the dark resin, you can skip this part and go to the silicone mould pouring part. The reason I had to do this step is because I wanted to go from a negative mould to a positive part to cast the silicone mould from to get the glow in the dark cast from.
You might think; why don't you just use the mould you already have to cast the glow in the dark button in?!
The advantage of having a silicone mould is:
1. you don't need to apply release agent (silicone is self releasing)
2. You can "flex" the mould to get your parts in an easier way out of the mould.
3. It can take some expansion/shrink from the resin you are casting in.
The advantage of having an aluminium epoxy cast:
1. Very durable mould
2. Stable mould
3. High temperature resistent
Step 3: Casting the Aluminium Epoxy Part
Here's a list of the materials used in this step to cast die Aluminium Epoxy part:
You will also find more data about the products on their website on how to use the products and what to use them for in other applications (like vacuum forming tools)
(Keep in mind, I bought all the products used in this tutorial from Easy Composites, I'm sure you will find some similar products from other brands more locally. They are based in the UK
Easy-Lease Chemical Release Agent
Soft Filleting and Filling Wax
Vac Cast Epoxy Casting Resin for Vacuum Forming Tools
Mouldphorm Polymorph PCL Low-Melt Moulding Granules
Easy-Lease Mould Cleaner
Perma-Grit Set of 8 Hand Tools in a Wallet
1. Using a Chemical release agent to have a proper demoulding
2. I've made a "wall" with Filling wax to create a base under and around the button when demoulded
3. Using Mouldphorm granules to know the volume I will need to cast the part. You could also use sugar, salt or rice instead. I just have the mouldphorm granules around.
4. Pour all the used granules back in the cup and now you know the volume needed in Vac Cast Epoxy resin.
(In the video you can see I've made a bit more because I was working on another project as well at that moment)
5. Remove the granules and fill to the line with Vac Cast Epoxy resin and add 6% of hardener
6. Mix well (I would advice you to mix 2min at least to make sure everything is mixed well)
7. Pour everything In the mould
8. Let it cure for 24h at ambient temperatures (25°C ideal)
9. If you want to use the Vac Cast for higher temperatures post cure the part for multiple hours at elevated temperatures. (Thats why you see in the video the wax melted under the part
10. Demould the part and clean of the wax with some hot soapy water.
11. To make sure you have a clean mould without any contamination of wax or other products use the Mould Cleaner.
12. I've decided to sand the cured part with a 1200 grid sandpaper to create a nice glossy finish. Keep in mind that you won't be able to sand the silicone so It's better to have a good part before casting or all your errors will be visible in each cast out of that silicone mould.
13. Polish the part
AND WE ARE DONE WITH THAT STEP!
Step 4: Casting the Silicone Mould
Addition Cure Silicone Rubber
Brilliant Red Liquid Silicone Pigment
IN2 Epoxy Infusion Resin
1. I've used some Fluted Signboard to create a box around the mould and hotglued it in place. I've also decided to put some tape around the box to make sure it stays together.
2. The Addition Cure Silicone Rubber is a translucent resin. Because this is a YouTube Button I'm making I decided to add some Red Silicone pigment, you don't have to do this and it won't make any difference, I just tought it looked better that way.
3. I've used 1 kg of silicone to cast this silicone mould. so mixing ratio was 1kg of silicone and 100grams of catalyst.
4. Here's an important thing, by using two cups you mix and transfer it from one to the other. by doing so you will make sure everything is mixed well, this is very important because uncured silicone will cause some failures in your mould.
5. The second important thing of having the two cups is that silicone will expand to 5 times in volume under vacuum while removing air under vacuum. That way you are able to remove entrapped air from the two cups in a proper way. KEEP IN MIND: there is no problem if you don't have a degassing chamber and vacuumpump. IT WILL WORK. the only difference is that you will have a little bit better results with the silicone being degassed.
6. Pour the silicone in one corner and let it self level over the entire part. Pour it in a thin stream to let any bubbles left in the silicone burst while being poured.
7. Let it cure for 24 hours, if possible a bit more
8. I did a quick test run with some "regular" epoxy resin to see how it turned out (that the clear youtube button you see there)
Step 5: Making the Baseplate (advanced)
To start this step with I would like to mention that this will probably be a little bit too complicated. This is a technique called VARTM (Vacuum Assisted Resin Transfer Moulding). This is a technique used in F1, Aviation, aeronotic and extreme sports part making. If you want to know more about it check out my YouTube Channel for more video's https://www.youtube.com/user/matthieutje65
I could have left this part out but I decided to include it anyways because even if you won't be able to reproduce this using this method it might be of some interest for some people, as well it's always nice to know how things are made, don't you think?!
To keep it short, you could easily use a wooden board or a brushed aluminium or plexi board to keep it simple.
The casting of the silicone and glow in the dark casting should be makeable for everyone!
3D CORE PET 100 Foam - 3mm
1. I've took the same dimensions from the first YouTube Button I've made with carbonfiber
2. cutting the 3D Core material to size.
3. As "mould" I'm using a glass plate, glass plates are ideal to do simple flat parts
4. Apply release agent on glass plate.
5. prepare your stack of materials to make the composite plate, here the lay-up was the following
Glassplate - 2X Fiberglass 200g/m² - 3D Core - 2X Fiberglass 200g/m² - Peelply - Infusionmesh - Connector - Vacuumbag
6. Once you have your lay up done a vacuumbag will compress everything and alow the resin to flow through the stack
7. I've mixed some infusion epoxy resin and let it run through the stack. Once it went all the way through you can let it cure for 24hours and demould.
8. Once demoulded I decided to sand the plate with scotchbright - round the edges - and apply the appropriate stickering
Step 6: Casting the Glow in the Dark Button
Probably the easiest step!
1. mix some transparant casting resin, add the desired amount of glow in the dark powder, went for blue on this project.
2. I've brushed some glow in the dark powder to get a better finish and a bit more glow
3. pour everything in from one side
4. wait 24 hours
Step 7: Final Assebly
1. Drill some holes in the button, DON'T go all the way through
2. I took two aluminium spacers and glued them in with some epoxy glue
3. transferred the holes needed to be made for the spacers on a piece of tape and put it on the plate
4. drill the holes through the backplate so the spacers fit through
5. leveled the distance by using some spacers and turned the plate around
6. added some brackets and glued them in and glued the spacers into place as well
7. Mount the finished plate on the wall
8. Give it some light and let it glow ;)
Step 8: Questions or Unclear?!
If you have more questions regarding this instructable feel free to leave me a message below and I'll try to answer all of your questions!
Feel free to wacht some of my other video's on YouTube to get inspired of everything you can do with fiberglass/carbonfiber/mouldings and more
YouTube: www.youtube.com/user/matthieutje65 (Don't forget to subscribe ;) )
Hope you liked this tutorial