Creating resin dice is a very fun and rewarding hobby, and one of the key aspects of this craft is making your own molds. By creating your own molds, you can customize the shape, size, and design of your dice, and ensure that each one is unique.
To create a mold for resin dice, I simply start by getting my master set that I had made for me by a shop on Etsy. I always use two-part molds (called ‘cap molds’) of the entire set which are made out of silicone rubber. To make the first part (which will be the bottom part) I place the dice in a shallow container (for me it’s a rectangular one) and make sure they won’t move, either by using double-sided tape or Pritt buddies. Once I’m sure they’re securely in place I measure out the right amount of silicone and hardener and start mixing.
Usually I mix the two components for about five minutes. During this time I use my plastic mixing stick to scrape along the bottom and sides to make sure the silicone is mixed thoroughly. You don’t want end up with silicone that doesn’t harden! As soon as I’m done I always place the silicone in my vacuum pomp to get rid of the majority of air trapped in the mixture. If you don’t, you will end up with tiny ‘spikes’ on your dice where the resin settled into the miniscule air pockets; this effect is worsened when you use a pressure chamber for your dice.
As soon as I see there’s no more bubbles being pulled to the surface I switch off the pump, take the silicone out and pour it into the container slowly. I found out it’s better to take my time and let the silicone find its own way around the dice than to rush it. I keep the cup steady and in one place; this gets me the best result. Then I let the silicone harden for the indicated amount of time, which, for the brand I use, usually means to let it settle for about a day (24 hours).
The next day I carefully remove the now-finished bottom half of the mold from its container, then place it in a second container (which is deeper than the other one) with the dice facing upwards. Before I mix and pour what’s going to be the top part of the mold I either use vaseline or mold release to ensure that I can easily separate the top and bottom part without having to cut into the silicone and risk damaging my master set (which, for the record, is a ‘working master set’; my original set is safe and sound in a cabinet).
The next steps are the same as the ones I took to create the bottom part, and after a day of waiting it’s time to carefully separate the top from the bottom part. As with the pouring of the silicone I take my time and only use a scalpel if there’s no other way. And… that’s it! I now have a working mold (well, after I remove my working master set) that I can use to create new dice!