Acrylic blocks are useful for a wide variety of purposes. You can use them for building clear, lightweight accents in your home, for displaying artwork or other items, for backing stamps or even for preserving materials. With clear casting resin, it is possible to make your own acrylic blocks. Use the same basic method to make small blocks for crafting or display purposes or to make large blocks for architectural projects .
Things You'll Need
Clear casting resin
Purchase a block mold in the shape you desire. You can also make your own mold by brushing several layers of liquid latex onto a block-shaped item, such as a box or a baking pan. This method makes a mold that is thin and weak, yet effective. However, you may need to prop your homemade mold up while using it.
Spray the mold with mold release. This will help preserve your mold.
Mix casting resin in a cup according to the instructions. Different casting resins require different ratios of resin to hardener, so read the instructions carefully. Mix thoroughly with a craft stick and try to not create bubbles. If you want the resin to be colorful, mix in a small amount of resin dye at this time.
Pour the resin into the mold, filling it so the resin is slightly higher than the edge of the mold. Resin shrinks as it cures. Pop any bubbles that you see as quickly as possible. Bubbles will make the item opaque. Remove any surface bubbles by spraying the resin with mold release and encourage bubbles to rise to the top by gently shaking the mold.
Spray mold release onto one side of a sheet of glass that is large enough to cover the back of your mold. Carefully place it over the back of the mold.
Wait for the resin to cure. The time required will vary depending on the size of your item, the weather conditions and the type of resin. Read the instructions to determine the time it will take for the resin to cure.
Remove the acrylic resin block from the mold.
If you are making a large block, mix a small amount of resin at a time. Pour each small batch into the block, wait for it to partially set, and then add some more resin. This prevents the resin from becoming very hot (resin heats as it cures). This technique is also useful if you want to preserve an object in the resin. To do this, pour a small amount of resin into the prepared mold, wait for it to partially set, and then add your object and cover it with more resin.
Work in a well-ventilated area and protect your work surface.
- Ask the Builder; Glass and Acrylic Blocks Do Many Things; Tim Carter; 2011
- America Tarantula Society Headquarters; The Hunting Blind; Rhys A. Brigida
- World War I Modeling Page: Resin Casting
- Hirst Arts Fantasy Architecture Inc.: Casting in Plastic
- Casting with Plastic Resins, an Alt. Sculpture FAQ; Christopher Pardell