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Dick Bonham

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Aloha Dick,

 

Whoa. Great dragons. How about a little more detail? Is it chased and repousse? High relief? All bronze? If so, how is bronze to work with? I'm working with an alloy with the intent of making mokume, but I'm guessing it will fight me.

 

Anybody else with dragons out there?

 

Karl

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Guest ford hallam

Hi Karl,

 

I've got some dragons. give me a while and I'll get them online. If you've planning on using bronze in a mokume billet I'd simply advise you not to. It will be far too brittle to move with the other alloys, it'll simply tear apart. ;) If it's a particular colour contrast you are looking for perhaps I could suggest an alternative.

 

cheers, Ford

 

You may already know of Steve Midgett but if not his site is a great mokume haven, his book and video are very good too. Here's a link

 

The other book I would recommend is by Ian Furguson, Ian was at the Royal College in London and has taken Mokume into the 21st Century. His approach is very high tech but pretty amazing. Here's a link to his book.

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I've got some dragons.

;):unsure:;)

 

Aloha Ford,

 

Sorry. Just sounds like you keep them out back in an aviary. Yes, I'm familiar with Midgett's and Ferguson's work as I do have their texts (some of the only contemporary publications). And I can ask the sensei, Gene. I have a really funny story concerning those three and how I met Gene, but this sounds like the makings of a new thread. Let's stay on the dragons here. :D

 

Karl

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Hi Karl,

The piece is created with layers of metal brazed and silver soldered together. It is then carved and chased. Here is the sketch I used to design my piece. The dragon on the left is what I used to cut out my pieces. If you check TCP post #1 in tutorials (Medal) you can see the technique. It works very well.

Dick

post-15-1180986718.jpg

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Aloha Dick,

 

Thanks. Should have recalled the very first tutorial.:huh: Another question: how do you deal with such a large heat sink?

 

Ford

Belated thanks for the advice. Ferguson's chart back's you up. When we get a chance to start up a mokume thread, I have some ideas to kick around.

 

Dan

Another great dragon. Looks like it's been handled some. Ever thought of trying patination?

 

Karl

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...how is bronze to work with? I'm working with an alloy with the intent of making mokume, but I'm guessing it will fight me.

 

Anybody else with dragons out there?

 

Karl

 

Hi Karl,

 

Bronze is more a general term for mainly copper- tin alloys.

When working with bronze it depends on the tin content how the working abilitys of the alloy is. Everything above 5% Tin is too brittle for forging. :huh:

 

I had made mokume with bronze-copper. It was made with very low tin bronze- it looks almost like copper when unpatinated and has exellent bonding abilitys. When patinated with rokusho the colour contrast is rather subtile.

Maybe more next time on a mokume tread...

 

regards

Karl

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If so, how is bronze to work with? I'm working with an alloy with the intent of making mokume, but I'm guessing it will fight me.

 

Karl

 

Aloha Karl,

 

My friend Mark Morgan worked extensively with bronze mokume in the 80s and early 90s. I'll attach a photo of a raised vessel that he gave me around 1990. He worked at school with Gene and Hiroko. Unfortunately I don't know the alloys in this piece, but they are bronze. The patina has changed since Mark gave it to me(age and a smokey house fire :huh: ) The rim is Sterling. 4" tall .Mark was a member of TCP at one point, I think, but I can't seem to locate him. At that time he had as much practical experience with alloys as anyone I know outside of Japan.

 

Obviously as with any material one must know ones materials and their limits. As with all things alloy, atmosphere is key. Mark obviously was working from a background of extensive experience, perserverence, and vision. He also enameled over bronze mokume, which in most circles would be considered folly.

 

Good luck. Aloha no, Jim

post-4-1181055788.jpg

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Guest ford hallam

Hi Jim,

 

I'd guess that the alloy your friend used was probably a silicon bronze ( 3% Si ) they can be forged and rolled etc. Personally though, I've never liked the colours that they exhibit after traditional patination.

 

Cheers, Ford :huh:

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Aloha

 

Thanks for the replies guys. We have got to get a mokume thread going.

 

Jim

Good to hear from you. Thanks for the image. I'll be seeing Gene soon, so I will ask about Mark. It would be great if we could get him back.

 

About the dragons, I have two questions.

1) Why do some have three claws, and some have five?

2) Dan's had 4 orbs of knowledge (is that the term?). My reference had one. What are they about?

 

Karl

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Guest ford hallam

Hi Karl,

 

apologies for the delay in rounding up my dragons, they're a slippery lot! :huh:

 

Generally speaking, Japanese dragons have 3 claws, occasionally 4. Chinese Imperial dragons always have 5, in fact is was an offence for anyone but the Emperor to display a 5 clawed dragon. Japanese artists have never been too observant of these "rules" though so you will occasionally see exceptions. The single jewel ( a flawless crystal ball ) held by Japanese dragons represents one of the three emblems of the Japanese Imperial regalia. The other 2 being the sword and the mirror.

 

regards, Ford

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The dragon i posted was made by a Tibetan metalsmith,i do not know the reason for the 4 orbs though. a mokume thread might be interesting ,there is a yahoo mokume group with James Binnion as a moderator. it has had few questions for a while.

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Guest ford hallam

As far as mokume gane goes, I reckon if you've got Steve Midgett's book and video, and Ian Furgusons book then you probably have all you need. If you can't get it to "happen" for you with that load of expertise and experience then I'd suggest taking up origami instead. :huh::):D

 

cheers, Ford

 

 

Hi Karl,

 

I should have added with my comment about bronze that I was considering it in combination with the usual Japanese alloys and copper. I spent a little time with Ian trying to figure out ways of applying traditional patinating processes to his very avant garde combinations, predictably, nothing really worked very well. :)

 

The other thing to consider is the very "high tech'" approach needed to create those combinations.

 

Ford B)

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then I'd suggest taking up origami instead. :huh::)B)

 

Aloha Ford,

 

Been there. Done that. I'm 1/2 Japanese, so I folded 250 cranes for my wedding. :)

I've made the easier copper/copper alloy/silver laminates, so I am up for a challenge. Why not go where few have gone before?

 

Dan

 

I've checked out that site from time to time. Very slow. I think we are cooler. :D

 

Hey, I started the thread next door. Let's continue there and let the dragons have their lair.

 

Karl

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Hi all,

 

While on the subject of dragons, I just thought I would post these photos for the ironworkers out there. This is one of two seats bordering a fireplace, and was made by Paul Beau, a Montreal based artist, around 1925. It is all forged iron. Coincidentally, I just took these photos last week.

 

post-1087-1181167179.jpg

 

post-1087-1181167197.jpg

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Guest ford hallam

Hi Phil,

 

that is lovely work, thanks ;) , I think they're griffins though :) either way...beautiful execution.

 

and I've finally managed to compress my latest images without too much loss. Here's a much enlarged view of a Japanese dragon I did a few months ago in steel. It's just relief carved with the eyes inlaid in gold and shakudo. The disc measures 3cm across.

 

 

Ford

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Hi Karl, glad you liked him. :) I sent you a pm about the eyes.

 

here's another, a baby dragon this time. It's in kata-kiri and kebori and is a copy of an illustration by Arthur Rackham. Copper. 6cm long. circa 2000

 

 

 

and this is a copy I did of a tiger, the original done by Unno Shomin. Shibuichi with gold and silver inlay details. 8 cm long. circa 1994

 

 

Ford

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Ford,

 

Beautiful work!

 

I love the sensitive control of the width of the lines. Very difficult to achieve, but it means everything when engraving with such broad lines.

 

Your comments on my photos got me intrigged as to the identity of the beasts. Griffons actually have the lower body of a lion. With a little bit of searching I discovered that this is a cockatrice, a relative of the basilisk. Given that they have been sitting still for a while, I should see if there isang merit to Theophilus and his theories about turning copper to gold.

 

Phil

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