Step 7:  Breaking ceramic shell to reveal rough bronze casting and then welding, grinding and polishing to finish building sculpture

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When the bronze cools, the shell is carefully broken off with a hammer and the metal sprues and metal cup are cut off.

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The two pieces for each owl are then sand blasted to remove any remaining shell.

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It's time to "build" the sculpture in metal.

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Since this sculpture was cast in only two pieces, the first step in metal is welding these two pieces together.   A larger sculpture may have 20 pieces or more.   They are put together just like a big three dimensional jigsaw puzzle.

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The weld line is removed with very careful grinding, engraving, sanding and polishing.

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Air hose powered hand tools (called die grinders) with sharp carbide bits of every shape and size, rotating abrasive disks, flexible sandpaper "cross-pads" and other polishing tools are used to finish both the welds and overall surface of the owl.   Imperfections and impurities are removed with additional grinding and precision "tig" welding.

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The sculpture is now ready to have its patina done.

Next Step

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