This build is Sakura’s Sealing Staff from the anime Card Captor Sakura.
This build is the first project where I used both 3D printing and molds. My build was based heavily on what Blind Squirrel did which you can find here: http://blindsquirrelprops.com/cardcaptors-sakuras-sealing-wand/. I also made use of the plans he posted, however I only used a portion of the plans, namely the head. I also added an extra arc as a guide for myself.
Time to glue the 3 pieces together!
And of course they need to be clamped for the first 15 minutes to help secure it tightly.
After it dried for about an hour I went ahead and traced the bird head onto the MDF.
Looking good so far! Time to cut it out. I used my bandsaw to cut out this shape as it gave me the most stability for cutting this shape out. Don’t forget, on tight curves it is best to cut “relief” cuts to make it easier on the bandsaw. I also went ahead and drew on the extra lines so that I know where to sand for the next step.
I secured the bird head with clamps and got out my trusty dremel with a sanding bit and got started to round out the shape.
After doing several passes I finally got the nice rounded shape I wanted. After getting the general shape with the dremel, I smoothed it out with 100 grit sand paper and then further with 220 grit sand paper. I also used my drill press with a 1 and 1/4 inch forstner bit to drill into the sides where the feathers will end up connecting.
For the staff tip I went ahead and ordered the 3D piece that Blind Squirrel created on shapeways. http://www.shapeways.com/shops/blindsquirrelprops This drastically saved me a ton of time and my 3D modelling skills are not the best so this worked out. So once I got the piece in the mail I prepared to make a mold for it. The first step, I surrounded it in a small clay “box”.
Next, I poured in some silicone. I used rebound 25 as that is all I had on hand.
Removed the clay and the original piece, and I have the perfect mold of it!
Let’s cast us a copy with some Smooth Cast 300!
Perfect, now to cast a 2nd copy and glue it together for my master. Once glued, I used some wood filler to fill in the holes and sanded it down nice and smooth.
Sadly, I forgot to take pictures of 2 part mold process for the complete mold of this piece. However, it will be very similar to the 2 part mold I will be doing later on for the bird head. Once I created a new copy from the 2 part mold I drilled a 1 inch hole into the top with a forstner drill bit.
With the staff tip done, I decided to make the wings that will go on the side. I first drew it out on some 1/4 inch MDF.
I then cut it out with my bandsaw and then used my router to give each feather a different height. The dremel could be used for routing as well, it just is not as powerful and is a bit slower and rougher than a real router. Next I decided to design a gem holder in google sketchup and have it printed from shapeways. To make sure the feathers and head connect the same way each time, I cut out some half circles. I put 1 half in the bird head hole I had drilled and the other half on the feather. This will insure that the feather slots into the head correctly and gives it a more secure hold when glued in. And a quick test fit of the two feathers. Everything is looking great so far. Next I created a mold of the gem holder and cast 2 copies to attach to the feathers. With the two feathers completed, I went ahead and created a mold for the two of them. I used rebound 45 and brushed on 3 layers.
Once these molds were done, I cast 2 copies of the feathers. I don’t have any pictures, but I created molds for the half circles that attach to the back. It was much easier to do that than to create a 2 part mold for these feathers.
I also created a 3D model of the gem I plan to slot into the gem holder. Here it is being test fitted. I also created a mold for the gem so that I could cast multiple copies.
Back to the bird head. I set up my mold box and filled half with clay. I then pressed the bird head into the mold until about half way. I used bolt heads to create keys in the clay. One thing to note. I should have coated the bird head with a sealant like wood glue. My master was pretty much destroyed once I pulled it out of the silicone, but the mold was perfect.
I then poured my silicone in. I used rebound 45 as I did not have omoo on hand.
I then took down the mold box and removed the clay. I then set the mold box back up around the half mold + master. Do not remove the master when doing a 2 part mold. Make sure you spray some mold release before pouring the 2nd half of the silicone, otherwise the entire thing will be solid and you’ll have to cut it open.
And here is the completed 2 part mold. I forgot to add a pour hole, so I cut away some silicone from the staff connection part.
I then put 2 pieces of scrape MDF on either side and put rubber bands around it. Then poured in some smooth cast 300. I measured how much I would need before hand, in this case ~12 oz.
I then proceeded to cut off the little part at the end and sanded down the whole thing smooth from some of the extra run off that seeped through the 2 part mold. I then drilled a 1 inch hole with a forstner drill bit in the bottom.
Time to slot everything together for a test fit!
Everything looks great. Time to bondo around the top and bottom connectors and sand it smooth so that it is seamless.
With both the tip and head attached, it is time to paint! A coat of primer first.
Next I painted the tip and beak red. I also did the 2 gems at the same time.
Next I masked off the red paint so that I could do the gold paint next.
And now applying the gold paint.
I did not have any pink spray paint on hand, but I did have some pink acrylic paint which worked out just as well. So I hand painted the pink portions.
Next I glued the red gems to the painted white feathers.
And the very final step was to slot these feathers and and glue them in place.
This was a fun project to work on and I learned a whole lot from it. With the molds that I have, I am able to recreate this staff in 1 week instead of the 1 month time I spent on this very first one. It was well worth the extra effort to create molds.