New to this board, but not to Alumilte. I have been using Alumilite resins for many years. I cast many small parts to restore slot car bodies as well as create model car parts, model railroad parts etc. I love it. I am looking to reproduce a tire that is no longer being manufactured. I have no experience with casting in silicone or urethane. From what I've read it seems making the molds out of silicone makes the best sense. This is what I am wanting to reproduce. I know a person in Germany who is doing it, but he says it's very labour intensive which raises the retail cost to that of NOS originals. I'd like to see if I can do it cheaper as I want to use them for my Custom Slot Car builds. Any suggestions, warnings, recommendations?
Thank you for your assistance.
This is what I want to reproduce:
Last Edit: Mar 2, 2020 11:16:03 GMT -5 by plymouth71
If you have some on hand, you've won half the battle as you can use them as "masters" and make copies of them. It's not necessarily that hard to make them but it does take time. I'd go with a two piece mold and use the hole as a registry key. One of the High Strength series silicons will be your best bet on the mold material, HS-3 will feel the "softest" and HS-1 is the "stiffest" feeling with HS-2 in the middle. Any of them will do fine and it's just a matter of how much flexing you'll be doing to demold, HS-3 would be the more flexible one. I use HS-3 all the time and have no problems demolding tiny things and the tiny casts don't get out of shape either.
Now what use are the tires going to get? Are you going to be actually moving the cars around like an RC car or will they be just display models? If they are going to move or if you just want the look and feel of real tires, I'd go with either Performance 65D or Performance 80D as those will be the closest to what you'll need and that's what they're formulated for. Now if you don't care if they look or feel like real tires and will keep them displayed, you could use RC-3 and either dye it or get the Black formula.
Now as for costs, you need to figure out how much each would cost you to make. Be sure to make the mold cavities as close to each other as possible, 1/4" in between is best. And if you make a mistake with either the molds or the castings, both can be "recycled" into new ones as long as you cut them down into filler but you'll need to mix the filler with new material to make the new parts but it is better than just tossing them.
I hope this helps and good luck! Be sure to show us how they come out if you decide to do them yourself.