To all weekend warriors out there
To best serve you, we have some general and simple instructions on preparing your molds for casting and finishing your bricks, remember the possibilities are endless. Depending on the mold you purchase we suggest to none-business owners if your buying our largest circular grapevine or rope mold, you should purchase at least five molds, this will limit your casting to two castings of five per circle, a minimum purchase of one mold is required. For a small business we suggest at least 20 molds per type and diameter, a minimum purchase of five mold is required.
These composite custom 3D mold, are approximately 18" X 9 " X 4.75 " high. With proper care these rubber molds can be reuse 1000 times producing a 100 circles 47.5 " Diameter. The industry cost is $30-40 per linear foot of concrete border. Unpainted 4 feet diameter circles sells for $325, painted circles can fetch you upwards of $500.
Preparing your molds
For first use, we suggest using pol-ease 2650 release agent sold by Polytek. For second use, wash thoroughly let dry then reapply release agent.
Preparing to cast your brick
To cast 3 bricks at a time, in a plastic trough, mix one 60lb bag of ready mix concrete. For additional strength, we recommend adding 4 lbs or 1/2 gallon High Strength Portland cement, 8 lbs or 1 gallon of sand to each 60 lb bag of ready mix concrete, this will result in a a better finish and less bug holes and three bricks.
Add 1/2 gallon of water to your mixing container before adding the ready mix concrete then mix until throughly combine, as you mix add water as needed. The final mix should not be poured but troweled or scooped out, (too much water will result in a weak brick).
Scoop your mix into the mold then shake gently from side to side taping the mold with a rubber mallet as much as you can. The shaking and tapping will limit air bubbles from forming on the finish side of the brick..
To ensure consistent brick height, fill each mold to the same level on a level surface. Let cure minimum 24 hours before demolding.
Please remember, concrete don't dry to become solid, it is a chemical process activated by water and require a minimum of 7-28 days to fully cure.
De-mold 24 hours later, for best results let cure for 48 hours
Now you're ready to de-mold, in an area level and flat, pick this casting to the flat side, shake gently then drag laterally and upwards until the brick emerge...There!!! The birth of your first brick.
Prepare to Dress or Finish
The following set of instructions is to achieve the finish as shown in our gallery, but remember the possibilities are endless.
After seven days your brick should be dry and slightly dusty to the touch, this is good and means your brick is ready to be dress. With a dry, cheap four inch paint brush dust off your creation.
Next, spray paint the entire brick white with watered down exterior latex paint, let dry, seal this first color with a light coat using a cheap paint sealer.
Spray a semi-transparent concrete glaze on the entire surface, let set for about a minute then with a dry rag wipe the glaze off the raised surfaces leaving the glaze only in the grooves. Let dry specific time to the glaze you chose.
After the glaze is completely dry, you now need to seal your piece of art with an exterior sealant for concrete, let
dry for 24 hours.
These molds are made from strong very strong rubber and with proper cleaning and care can easily recover its cost. Remember these molds will degrade faster if stored in the sun, after casting, please, wash thoroughly then store in a dark dry place.
Thats it, you're done!!!.
After you have cast and dressed ten bricks, go see how easy it is to install at this link .
Thank You for reading through this, for professional instruction on antiquing or faux painting please refer to the web.