The next process was hand casting which we also did using alginate.A hand cast can me used in a similar way to an ear cast to create a prosthetic piece which will enhance or change the natural shape of the models hand.
For this task we split into pairs and had one person mixing and pouring the alginate into the bottle to cast the models hand.
As the Alginate had to be mixed in larger quantities it was done in a plastic bucket with a drill that had a sort of whisk om the end of it. The mixing process had to be done quickly as it doesnt take lontg for the alginate to set.
Once mixed the alginate is poured into the bottle around the models hand while the model rubs their finger together to remove and unwanted air bubbles which will effect the quality of the final cast.
This was yet another strange experience waiting for this to set which just leaves your arm feeling slightly like a dead weight but its nothing too uncomfortable.
Once the Alginate had fully set the next step was removing my had from the mould. It is a little tricky as it is important not to tear the alginate but if done gently and with enough care your hand shuold just slide out. As I am luckty enough to have quite large hands the alginate inside my mould did tear slightlty when i removed my hand but it thankfully wasnt bad enough to ruin it completely.
My tutor suggested that if i were to do it again it would probably work better if i used a wider container than a bottle so I would have more room for my hand inside it.
Once my hand was removed the next step was to mix up some plaster to pour inside the bottle, this will create the cast of the hand. We had to start by adding a small amount at a time and swishing it round inside ensuring the plaster got inside every finger. we then had to fill up the whole mould up with the plaster, filling it about an ich beyond the alginate. This will create a base for the hand to stand on making it alot easier to work with.