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tiki

Clay TikiCoins!

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Aloha everyone - prepare yourself for a huge post!

 

I was going to wait till these little guys were finished before posting - but I just had to share! As you may (or may not) know, I enjoy making ceramic Tiki Mugs in my free time. A while ago I branched off into making some tiki tiles for our house. I was captivated by the process of hand-pressing tiles, and built my own tile press for my studio. Not only did the tiki tiles end up on our bathroom walls, several found their way into caches as a neat swag item. People enjoyed finding them, and I decided to make a few “dedicated” tiki tiles for geocaching - and the Clay TikiCoin project was born!

 

I thought I’d share the construction process with you in case any other geocachers wanted to give it a try. I should note now that these coins are non-trackable, NOT for sale, and are trade/swag items only (hopefully I can therefore discuss them on this forum).

 

Here you see the master sculptures. I decided to make the coins around 2 inches in diameter (any smaller would make pressing the clay difficult) and sculpted the masters out of grey Super Sculpey. I took care to avoid any undercuts and I did not bake the clay. For the first 2 coins I went with a stone block Tiki Idol face and a Spooky Skull.

 

ClayCoin1.jpgClayCoin2.jpg

 

I built boxes around the finished sculptures...

 

ClayCoin3.jpg

 

...and carefully filled them with plaster. I was extra careful to avoid trapping air bubbles on the surface of the coins (I did end up with a nasty one in the skull’s eye though, so I have to correct every skull coin I press).

 

ClayCoin4.jpg

 

Once the plaster sets I remove the wood walls...

 

CLayCoin5.jpg

 

...And carefully lift away the plaster mold. Here you see the negative image of the Stone Tiki Idol (with dried clay bits from a test pressing).

 

ClayCoin6.jpg

 

I stamp the back of the clay coins with this AMAZING clay stamp I had machined out of brass by the amazing fellow over at www.claystamps.com - he does great work!

 

ClayCoin7.jpg

 

Here are several pressed coins on the drying rack. I’ll get some shots of the tile press in action later on. These are test coins - and the clay I used is way too gritty for this type of thing. I’ll be switching to a proper clay this weekend when I crank out a bunch of coins.

 

ClayCoin8.jpg

 

Here you can get a sense of scale

 

ClayCoin9.jpg

 

and a peek at the back. Don’t bother going to the website on the stamp - I haven’t put it together yet! :anibad:

 

ClayCoin10.jpg

 

I still need to bisque fire these in my kiln, glaze (color) them, and then send them back into the kiln for a final firing. I’ll post more photos as things progress!

 

Mahalo,

Tiki

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um, yah... that ROCKS

 

Thanks much for laying out the whole process, it was really appreciated!

Edited by intolerable

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Amazing! And - thanks for explaining the process - I sculpted a new Siggy item and we were stumped on the best way to cast it.

 

:anibad:

 

TYTYVM!!!!!!!

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OOOH my goodness! Those are just outrageous cool!!

 

Any chance of sending a couple of them over the big pond here for release in Sweden?

 

I just love them!

 

Naomi :anibad:

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OOOOOO. Way too cool! The skull is definitely cool!

 

I've had the pleasure of handling some of Tiki's square tiles (which are outstanding!) so I can only imaging how cool these will be in the "flesh". He does amazing things with his glazing!

 

Way cool!

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Very nice!!! I am taking a Raku Ceramics class of which I will also hope to make a killer clay coin. Just bought a block of B-mix which is a finer clay I figured would work well for the coins...I sure hope they turn out as good as these did! :anibad:

 

Now just gotta get some fine carving tools to make 2 stamps...ill let ya know how they turn out when I am done with the whole process- Still figuring what design I may use!

 

Nice work! ;)

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Wow, I love it! Thanks for sharing!

 

I am currently in a ceramics class. I had all these wonderful ideas coming into class, even tried carving the leatherhard clay but it isn't as easy as I thought it would be, so I'm much more appreciative of the work you're posting.

 

Funny you should post this today, I lugged home a bunch of clay to work on handbuilding 3 bottles tonight. I hope with more practice I can do half as good as you :anibad: I'd like to make a horse tiki mug one day ;)

 

Thank again for sharing, I just love this stuff! I need to get to Hawaii for some caching! Scoring a ceramic tiki coin would be most excellent!

 

tsun

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Very nice!!! Thank you for sharing!!! You are very talented :anibad: Plus its another tiki item for us all to drool over too LOL

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Awesome! I'd love to see how these turn out, too, after the glazing & firing. And I'd also like to add my thanks for showing the process. I think it would be fun to do (not that I have any spare time. ; ) ) But it's a good lesson, and thanks for the reference to the machined brass stamps, too!

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Those are awesome.. Cant wait to see more pictures!!

 

 

Aloha everyone - prepare yourself for a huge post!

 

I was going to wait till these little guys were finished before posting - but I just had to share! As you may (or may not) know, I enjoy making ceramic Tiki Mugs in my free time. A while ago I branched off into making some tiki tiles for our house. I was captivated by the process of hand-pressing tiles, and built my own tile press for my studio. Not only did the tiki tiles end up on our bathroom walls, several found their way into caches as a neat swag item. People enjoyed finding them, and I decided to make a few “dedicated” tiki tiles for geocaching - and the Clay TikiCoin project was born!

 

I thought I’d share the construction process with you in case any other geocachers wanted to give it a try. I should note now that these coins are non-trackable, NOT for sale, and are trade/swag items only (hopefully I can therefore discuss them on this forum).

 

Here you see the master sculptures. I decided to make the coins around 2 inches in diameter (any smaller would make pressing the clay difficult) and sculpted the masters out of grey Super Sculpey. I took care to avoid any undercuts and I did not bake the clay. For the first 2 coins I went with a stone block Tiki Idol face and a Spooky Skull.

 

ClayCoin1.jpgClayCoin2.jpg

 

I built boxes around the finished sculptures...

 

ClayCoin3.jpg

 

...and carefully filled them with plaster. I was extra careful to avoid trapping air bubbles on the surface of the coins (I did end up with a nasty one in the skull’s eye though, so I have to correct every skull coin I press).

 

ClayCoin4.jpg

 

Once the plaster sets I remove the wood walls...

 

CLayCoin5.jpg

 

...And carefully lift away the plaster mold. Here you see the negative image of the Stone Tiki Idol (with dried clay bits from a test pressing).

 

ClayCoin6.jpg

 

I stamp the back of the clay coins with this AMAZING clay stamp I had machined out of brass by the amazing fellow over at www.claystamps.com - he does great work!

 

ClayCoin7.jpg

 

Here are several pressed coins on the drying rack. I’ll get some shots of the tile press in action later on. These are test coins - and the clay I used is way too gritty for this type of thing. I’ll be switching to a proper clay this weekend when I crank out a bunch of coins.

 

ClayCoin8.jpg

 

Here you can get a sense of scale

 

ClayCoin9.jpg

 

and a peek at the back. Don’t bother going to the website on the stamp - I haven’t put it together yet! :anibad:

 

ClayCoin10.jpg

 

I still need to bisque fire these in my kiln, glaze (color) them, and then send them back into the kiln for a final firing. I’ll post more photos as things progress!

 

Mahalo,

Tiki

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Very cool. I was just yesterday thinking about the potential for ceramic signature items when I saw locally produced ceramic souvenir magnets selling pretty inexpensively. Of course they weren't in the same league as these!

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Wow! They look really cool. Will they just be in caches or are you trading a couple? :D

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Aloha folks!

 

First off - a huge mahalo for all the kind words and excitement about these clay coins! They have been a very fun project for me, and it has been wonderful to read all the kind postings.

 

I pressed a few more clay coins today, and I snapped a few progress shots to further explain how the coins are made. Here we go!

 

claycoin11.jpg

Here you see the 2 clay coins molds. THe mold on the right has a round wad of wet clay loosely pressed into it. I the cover the wet clay with a bit of canvas (to keep it from sticking to stuff) and then a small block of wood before placing it in....

 

claycoin12.jpg

...the tile press! Here you see the mold on the bottom, wet clay, canvas, wood “pusher block”, and the mold press plate (the 2 sheets of plywood with the pipes on top). I made this tile press following the plans in Frank Geogino’s amazing book Hand Made Tile. I can’t recommend it enough! I give the press lever a good pull and...

 

claycoin13.jpg

... the pusher block compresses the clay into the mold, and excess clay squishes out the sides!

 

claycoin14.jpg

I bring the pressed mold back to my work area.

 

claycoin15.jpg

The canvas and pusher block are removed...

 

claycoin16.jpg

...and the excess clay is carefully trimmed away with a straight edge stick.

 

claycoin17.jpg

I center the brass stamp on the wet clay (I scribed an arrow in the plaster mold so I know which end is “up”).

 

claycoin18.jpg

The back stamp is pressed in! I use a touch of WD-40 on the stamp to keep the clay from sticking. At this point I set the mold aside for about 5 to 10 minutes. During this time, the plaster will wick the moisture out of the clay, causing the clay to shrink. Once the clay has shrunk, I can flip the mold over, give it a good tap, and the coin falls out!

 

claycoin19.jpg

Here are some finished coins on the drying rack. They will be bisque fired (a low temperature firing to harden the clay), glazed, and then fired again to completely harden the clay and set the glaze.

 

Mahalo for looking!

Tiki

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Awesome fun to watch the process. Thanks for sharing with us. The photos & description just add time to your work. We sure do enjoy your efforts on our behalf. :laughing:

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Make's me want to take classes and invest in some equipment!!

 

Awesome job Tiki!!!

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ooops....liked it so much, i double-posted!!!

Edited by Rockin Roddy

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I love painting ceramics but have never made anything like that.

 

They are wonderful!!!!! I would LOVE to have a tiki and skull in my hands someday, they are just wonderful!!!!! and thank you so much for showing how they are made!!!!!

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Aloha Folks!

 

Time for a clay Tikicoin update. I unloaded these goodies from the kiln after bisque firing the other day:

 

claycoin20.jpg

 

a bisque firing is a lower temperature firing that "sets" the clay. It is hard, but still brittle and porous. At this stage I apply the glaze (color) to the coins:

 

claycoin21.jpg

 

Now, please keep in mind that the colors and textures you see here are NOT the final look of the coins! Glaze is not like paint - it goes throgh a chemical change during the high-temperature final firing and at that point it turns its true color. It is kind of like painting with wet powdered glass. You never know what you are going to get - as colors can vary widely. Sometimes it can be quite frustrating! :laughing:

 

Here are the coins loaded back into the kiln for the final glaze firing:

 

claycoin22.jpg

 

Some of them are on "stilts" - these are little ceramic and wire stands designed to lift the glazed object off the floor of the kiln. This is done to keep any glaze that drips during the firing from fusing your piece to the kiln floor forever (well, at least until you remove it with a chisel)! :laughing:

 

This will be the final firing for all but 2 of these coins. I've clear coated 2 of them, and will be firing them both one more time (at a very low temp) with a special glaze made of actual gold. Never tried it before, and as the glaze is quite pricey I figured a small tikicoin would be a great test subject. If all goes well they should look pretty spiffy!

 

I'm going to start the kiln tomorrow morning, and it takes 12 hours to fire, and 12 hours to cool. If all goes well I'll be bringing a Clay TikiCoin as swag to this weekends CITO event on Ohau! Whoo!

 

Mahalo,

Tiki

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Hey! I've been making little sig Moai with the same method (smaller scale and FIMO clay) for couple of years now. It's a great method for just about anybody who wants a nice personal signature item.

 

As usual VanTiki, fantastic project. Wonderful of you to share the process.

 

... and LOVE the tentacles! You tease!!

 

TTUMS

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Hey! I've been making little sig Moai with the same method (smaller scale and FIMO clay) for couple of years now.

 

I've got one and it is one of the stars of my swag collection! Totally cool. You should post a photo of the mold, stamp, and finished piece!

 

Tiki

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Mahalo everyone!

 

Things are heating up in the studio.....

 

kiln.jpg

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So who's got access to a private jet? I would love to fly to Hawaii for the weekend to attend this CITO event. Unfortunately, I couldn't possibly persuade any of my living relatives over there to go.

 

Oh geez, I'm pathetic. LOL :sad:

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Just came across this thread... do you need me to get some to your brother? [asks hopefully] :P

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Hey! I've been making little sig Moai with the same method (smaller scale and FIMO clay) for couple of years now.

 

I've got one and it is one of the stars of my swag collection! Totally cool. You should post a photo of the mold, stamp, and finished piece!

 

Tiki

 

Well thank you Tiki! I take that as a true complement.

 

I am going to work on a picture collection of how I make my low-tech tiki sig items over the weekend and will post it here in case anyone wants to give it a whirl.

 

MAHALO!

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Thanks for sharing all the info and pics, Tiki. I've really like watching the progress of your clay coins !!

 

...Anthus

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