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Lost wax helmet detailing?
Does anyone know if any decoration on helmets, e.g. coils on a Montefortino, was done using the lost wax casting method? A colleague of mine is studying a helmet and swears she sees a fingerprint in it. <p></p><i></i>
Dan Diffendale
Ph.D. candidate, University of Michigan
Hi Danno, as far as I know --but I could be wrong-- a lot of Montefortino helmets were made of cast bronze. The only method of cast bronze I know is lost wax. I think I vaguely remember that detail about the fingeprint somewhere. <p></p><i>Edited by: <A HREF=[email protected]narmytalk>Antoninus Lucretius</A> <IMG HEIGHT=10 WIDTH=10 SRC="" BORDER=0> at: 3/29/05 2:39 pm<br></i>
<em>The only method of cast bronze I know is lost wax</em><br>
The Romans used two ways of casting copper alloys, 'lost wax' (aka <em>cire perdue</em>) being one: this is a one-use-only technology since the mould has to be broken in order for the object to be extracted. The other way was by using two-part moulds, the advantage of this being that original items can be copied (so no wax model involved) and the mould is reusable a number of times (depending upon the care taken in the process). The characteristic giveaway of two-part moulds is 'flash' (remember your days making plastic models? You will be familiar with flash if you ever did that) which is seepage between the edges of the two parts of the mould (with the sort of technology used at the time the basic rule is generally 'the more the mould is reused, the greater the risk of flash'). Two part moulds tend to be favoured from the 2nd century AD onwards, but that is not an unvarying rule.<br>
Mike Bishop <p></p><i></i>
You know my method. It is founded upon the observance of trifles

Blogging, tweeting, and mapping Hadrian\'s Wall... because it\'s there

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