I picked up the Acrylic Water Kit from Wal-Mart while making my Masquarade Ball costume. I wanted to write a quick post about what a total, and utter failure it was for casting small parts. It is a fair bit cheaper than getting a similar resin kit from the craft store, and Wal-Mart is usually easier to get to (even if the customer service is way less useful) so I had hoped it would be a good option at least…
I don’t know if the failure was a temperature issue (I cast things in my kitchen, in the winter, but it still should have been warm enough to set up…) but the instructions said that it would set “hard” in 24-48 hours. I mixed and poured on Sunday night, and by the following Saturday (well beyond 48 hours) the items were firm enough to remove from the molds, but were completely sticky on the back sides. Totally unusable, and they left so much sticky residue behind that I also had to throw out all of the molds. (It was REALLY hard to remove the residue, and I wouldn’t have trusted the small details to release all of the acrylic – nor the other materials I’d put in there later being affected by any residue.)
Now, in the kit’s defense, I did add a colourant intended for this kind of product, and it’s entirely possible that the colourant affected the mix. I will discuss this a little more in an upcoming post about the mold and cast pieces themselves, but I figured I would post about the kit first.
Well, with the thought that the colourant might be to blame, I figured that I would try it again without the colourant. (Which would kind of defeat the purpose that I need this stuff for – since ultimately it has to be coloured… but.. whatever…)
I didn’t want to ruin a mold, so I first mixed it in one disposable container, and then poured it into a second disposable container to set up.
I poured in the evening, and by the morning the material was much more firm, but still sticky and not useable. Still… that’s only 12 (give or take…) hours instead of the 24-48…
After waiting the 48 hours, the item was still a TINY bit tacky (not sticky, but tacky) on the top (the back of the piece), but mostly firm. I unmolded it from the disposable container, and the bottom was still sticky and gooey. I left the item out to dry further, but basically am considering this a total failure.
I think that this material is best left to it’s original purpose – pretending to be water in a vase, where it will never be removed from the vase. I wouldn’t consider getting it for making small parts for costumes/crafting. Boo.