I got all five entries accepted into the Royal Miniature Society Exhibition! Very pleased indeed! I think I've got to start planning now to do the same for next year!
Here are my entries for the 2018 Royal Miniature Society exhibition. I've been busy with all manner of different things so I've just not managed to enter anything since 2013. Hopefully I'll get these five through the selection process!
I need to support the ellipses properly. I've tried improvising with the trivets I've already got but it's not working so I need to do something a bit better.
The steel is sprayed with ground-coat and dried slowly in the makeshift oven
Now I've done a bit of testing, I'm a lot happier and more comfortable with what I've got to do. The test rectangles showed there was a small improvement with rounding the edges so I decided to do that.
Yes!! Time to get enamelling!
In order to successfully enamel steel, it needs a layer called ground-coat (sometimes called grip-coat or base-coat) to form an interface between the steel and the enamel. The ground-coat contains adhesion agents that promote redox reactions with the iron and carbon, found in steel, at the high temperatures involved when firing the enamel. A thin coat is required and then the opaque white enamel can go on top.
Enamel adhesion is improved if the steel's surface is roughened. I need a homogeneous roughness, a sort of even unevenness.
OK, so it's time to do some sandblasting!
I need to make sure the steel is completely free of oil and grease before I enamel it. A good test, to see if it's grease-free, is to run water down the steel and see if the water pulls away from anywhere on the steel surface.
Before I enamel the ellipse I wan't to do some tests. For this I'm cutting out some small rectangles 74mm x 52mm (this is A8 paper size).