Luna Bean Casting Kit Info Page | Instructions, Tips, Video, Demo, FAQs
Thank you for choosing Luna Bean couples, infant, and -XL- family kits!
What can you create!? See our photo gallery here that is full of customer submitted castings: Luna Bean Photo Gallery
The video below shows the Keepsake Hands couples kit in use, but the same procedure also applies to the larger -XL- kit. More videos can be found here: Video Library
Helpful Hints and Reminders:
- Temperature controls the set time of STEP 1. Warmer temps speed up the set time. Colder temps slow down the set time. For an average total set time of about 6-8 minutes, use cool water (70-75F). Be mindful of external heat sources such as mixing near an oven or fireplace, or outside in the summer, etc. If you want as much time as possible before the material sets, use refrigerator chilled water. The chilled water will give you 10+ minutes.
- Best practices for blending STEP 2. Your final casting will be the Step 2 stone so you want the best results possible. To achieve that, all of the powder needs to react with the water. When you first add the powder to the water, allow the water to absorb the powder before blending. This could take a minute or more. Once that is done, blend the water and powder smoothly (as to not add extra air) for several minutes until it starts to thicken slightly. This takes anywhere from 4-8 minutes depending on the exact circumstances. If it is not blended well, some water will rise to the surface while the the cast is curing. Overall, though, the cast will still turn out and capture details.
- Hand position and trapped air: The stone cannot flow against gravity on its own and therefore the bucket needs to be turned and tilted to fill properly. If fingers are curved back up close to 90 degrees (such as a partial fist) you will most likely also encounter trapped air and the appearance of "cut-off" fingers. To prevent this, fingers that are curled back up should be in contact with its own hand, or a partner's hand to allow a free flow of air out of the cast.
- HARD WATER: Minerals in the water can affect both Step 1 and Step 2. With step 1, it can cause variations in pH (thus affecting the color change feature) and will also cause the set time to speed up or slow down depending the type of minerals. With Step 2, excess minerals can disrupt bonding. If you are comfortable drinking your tap water, it is probably just fine. However, if you have any questions about whether or not to use it for this project, opt for distilled water.
- Drain all excess water from the mold prior to pouring Step 2. If there is water inside the mold when Step 2 is poured, it will be pushed to the outside of the final cast and form "runnels" or "little rivers" that appear to be cracks on the surface where the water once was (before it evaporated).
- To ensure a final casting that is "clean," wash hands thoroughly before making the mold and keep the mold covered while waiting to pour the casting stone.
- Allow the completed cast to dry thoroughly and efficiently by placing in front of a fan and near as much natural light as possible (but not in direct sunlight). Be sure air flow can reach all areas ... including the base ... and rotate periodically.
- Both the Step 1 and Step 2 will stick strongly to any porous surface. Avoid getting it on clothing, towels, rugs, etc. Cover working surfaces with a plastic garbage bag for easy clean-up.
- RINGS: Rings can most certainly be worn in the casting. The rings will not be harmed. Simply rinse off any residual molding material left behind after the mold is made. Be careful when removing the ring hand from the mold as some rings have sharp edges that may slice the mold on the way out. Due note that rings with large stones, narrow bezels, and with a lot of nooks crannies where molding material can get stuck don't do nearly as well as flatter less intricate rings.
- LONG NAILS: For best results, it is best to artificially thicken long nails so they have much less of a chance of breaking during the de-molding process. Air drying clay, tape, even petroleum jelly ... can be used to make the nails thicker prior to creating the mold.