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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    London, United Kingdom, United Kingdom

    Default Gorgeous Key To Time Replica

    Paul Pape Designs have produced these outstanding replicas of The Key To Time - from the sound of things, it might have been harder than finding the original segments!

    As Kestre stated, it was a project of Odyssian proportions. Iím the artist who took on the task of molding and casting (after unsuccessfully attempting the master pieces). Iíll spare the gory details on my attempts to create the masters, except to say that I made ten versions of them. The challenge was getting the pieces to fit snugly based on the original design. Jump ahead to the MDF masters. They also needed a lot of work. About two weeks of bondo, sanding, priming, more sanding, re-priming and then polishing, they got to a point they could be cast.

    The molds are huge, and since I figured the only way to earn anything on this would be to make multiples, the molds are made of silicone. The castings are Castín Craft resin. It takes two gallons to make a finished cube and three weeks to cure the resin enough to polish it. Since the pieces are so large, I experimented in casting in layers, as the original one was. This doesnít work as well as one might think. What canít be seen in the tv stills is that there is banding in the acrylic if cast this way. It would work great for 80ís British television, but wouldnít pass muster when inspected up close. So I started casting the whole piece at once. Each one takes between 20-40 ounces of resin. The manufacturer does not recommend castings thicker than 1/2Ē. The result is non-linear shrinkage. Essentially, the thicker areas concave due to the excessive heat of curing while the corners and thinner areas remain fine. So to combat this, I ended up casting them whole, letting them shrink and cure, then removing them from the mold. I would then mix up a small batch of resin and add it to the mold. Then Iíd take the first cast and put it back in, allowing the liquid resin to envelope the cast piece, creating a shell less than a 1/4Ē at itís thickest, which meant no shrinkage. But this finished pieces remain tacky for weeks. While mine was fully curing, I contacted all the acrylic casting places near me to see if they could create the finished pieces from my molds or post-cure/clean pieces I create. A bunch turned me away, a few said theyíd look into it, and one gave it a shot. Weeks later they figured out it was beyond their expertise and gave up. This was about a week ago. So I went back to get the pieces and molds and then spent a few days cleaning them up and polishing again. And now we are here.

    Iíd be ok with producing more, but the pieces are highly toxic in liquid form (so I cast them outside about fifty feet from my house) and take a lot of material and time. Most of the time is post-cure, then about five days of sanding and polishing. Iíll be honest here with material cost, as anyone can look it up on the web. Each gallon kit of Castín Craft is $100 plus $10 per gallon kit for extra hardener. It takes two gallons to make a cube. So $220 just for materials. Add in labor and finishing equipment (itís all wet sanding, BTW) and we get to $800-$900 per cube. I know thatís out of price range for most, so there are a couple of options here. The first would be to ship the pieces unfinished, straight from the molds. Theyíd run $400, and Iíd include the process to get them finished. The other option would be to purchase pieces one at a time. This option would allow someone to pace themselves cost-wise but still have the Whovian adventure of collecting all six segments. The final cost would be the same as the finished cube. Since my account is new, I canít offer to sell anything here, but contact Kestre to get my contact info. Plus, Iíll add it to my store and that should be Internet searchable. Hope this helps (and gives a better look into the process)
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    Pity. I have no understanding of the word. It is not registered in my vocabulary bank. EXTERMINATE!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Bracknell, Berks


    Wow! That's an impressive amount of effort to recreate a TV prop that probably didn't have that much time put into making it in the first place.

    It's still cheaper than Andrew Beech paid for the oiginal (well one of the originals anyway!) back in the day!

    I've just got my handcuffs and my truncheon and that's enough.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2006


    My Aunt Dolly'll knock you up a couple for a tenner.

    I'll rephrase that...

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