Rhinestic's Knick Knacks

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Daiso Maniac Saturday: #26 Oyumaru Experiment Part 1 Mold for UV Resin

I have always been wanting to try this experiment after reading about this interesting technique from this  Japanese UV resin book. (I know some people have pretty decent results with 2-part epoxy resin)

And so I got 2 packs of oyumaru from Daiso that contained the non-colored ones (but they do have glitter in them... ==).

So I took out the 2 pieces of oyumaru that I needed. I also prepared a pair of chopsticks...

And heated up some water in my microwave (the water needs to be over 80 degrees c). I dunked the oyumaru pieces into the hot water and waited for 3 minutes, while giving them a little stir with my chopsticks in between.

After 3 minutes, the oyumaru pieces softened up and I kinda rolled them into a ball..

Next, I used my quilting ruler to flatten the ball to about the size bigger and thicker than my shape that I want to mold.

Now, on the first try, I put my softened oyumaru on a clear file folder while flattening it. That's a really BAD mistake. It kinda got stuck to the folder while I was working on it and pretty soon, it became a mess. SO, tip number 1, use a piece of paper for this step.

Before pushing my shape in, I did peel the flattened oyumaru carefully (to keep its shape) from the piece of paper in case it got stuck to the paper too. Putting the flattened oyumaru back on the paper (and lightly pressing it against the paper so that it's level), I pushed my shape into the oyumaru.

I tried my best to keep the oyumaru around the corners as tight as possible. I kept the shape in the oyumaru and let it cool quite a bit, before placing it on my quilting ruler. At this stage, the oyumaru was not as sticky but it will harden to a nice shiny and level bottom due to the smoothness of the quilting ruler.

The ugly mold. My next attempt looked better, but I was in a hurry.. So no photos..

Testing time. I should have taken pictures of the piece before I domed it.. Frankly speaking, I was quite dismayed by the results. But I should have known. The book says this technique is good for making mini simple parts. Simple my shape may be, it wasn't exactly mini (3 cm on each side)... For this size and thickness, I needed about 2 minutes for each layer of resin to cure. And the process of curing kinda softened the oyumaru a bit..

Also, I have no idea if the oyumaru blocks out some UV light or there are chemicals in it which prevents proper curing, the surface touching the mold wasn't properly cured. I had to dome the piece and put it back into the UV light to cure to a shiny finish... I also had to dome the back to even out the raised edges (which is normal in using molds).

So here it is, my test piece, which I made into a ring. It's wearable, but it's way less than perfect.

I did a little more experimenting, and decided to create 2 molds out of 2 different ribbon cabochons. Both have reliefs in them (i.e. they are not flat pieces like the triangle) but one cabochon is about 3 times the size than the other.

This time round, I colored my UV resin with powdered dyes. For my first attempt, I filled the molds with resin in one pour. I thought the resin in the smaller mold will cure with no problem. And boy was I wrong.... In both molds, the resin in the recessed areas was totally not cured... ==

For my second attempt (and also tip number 2), I did layer pouring and curing. Results were better, but as with the triangle mold, the resin touching the mold surface wasn't cured properly... I had to re-cure the pieces after popping them out of the molds..

Left is my first attempt. They ended up totally flat after I re-cured them. Right is my second attempt...

Looking at the samples in the book and comparing with my own results, my conclusion is go for pieces that are (tip number 3) flat and narrow (in the book, they used a thin cross, and the outline of a pair of glasses), so UV light can hit the resin uniformly.

And as for the molds... For me, it's pretty much a one or two-time use.. To clean out the uncured resin from the mold, I had to flex the mold quite a bit. Oyumaru is kinda rigid and doesn't really retain it's shape if you deform it too much. Once you clean out the mold more than once, the mold can tear or deform. But I guess if you stick with the simple thin shapes, you might be able to churn out more usage..? Or maybe, epoxy resin works better...

For my next Daiso Maniac Saturday post, I'll be doing another oyumaru experiment! I'll try creating molds for making the base for clay waffles, ice-cream cones and sundae cups. So stay tuned!

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