Can You Preserve a Rose in Resin?!
Can you preserve a rose in resin?! This is the age old question that no one has ever asked. Actually, people have been asking Peter this for literally years! Probably fueled by the resurgence of Beauty and the Beast fanatics, it is clearly something people want to know!
The first step in this project is to obtain a rose, which in Peter’s case was from his wife’s garden. It’s a good thing he will only need one! <foreshadowing> After successfully absconding with the rose, the next step was to hang it up for a week to dry. Meanwhile, in order to encase the rose in resin, a mold was required. Peter utilized his lathe to fabricate a nice redwood base for both the molding process and the final project itself.
After fixing the dried rose upon the base with some glue, a plastic cylinder cut from a soda bottle served to surround the delicate flower. Great care was taken to ensure the bottom of the cylinder was leak proof.
Now came time for the resin! Due to the sheer volume to be poured at once, a specialty resin was used called Chill Epoxy Ice 2. Based on prior experience, any other resins would rapidly overheat and destroy the project when not applied over a large area, such as a tabletop. This project will certainly put that resin to the test!
After carefully measuring out the resin and pouring it in, the project was delicately lowered into the pressure pot. Placing the mold in the pressure pot before adding 60 ounces of resin is retroactively recommended!
The purpose of the pressure vessel is to compress and squeeze all of the air bubbles trapped in the rose and resin until they are no longer visible, resulting in a super clear casting.
While the resin cured magnificently clear, the heat generated had an unexpected result on the rose. It basically cooked it! After several attempts and misappropriated roses later, Peter finally settled on a solution… to reduce the amount of resin used in order to keep the temperature lower and not cook the rose. In the end, he used 40 ounces instead of 60, and that seemed to do the trick!
While the casting was crystal clear, it was not in the optimum dome shape for the displayed rose, so off to the lathe it went!
The final step in finishing the dome was a process that should be very familiar to any longtime viewers of this channel, Micromesh! It is a sanding system that consists of many sanding pads. As you work through the increasing grits, it results in an amazingly smooth surface!
While Mrs. Brown finally figured out where the rose came from, she loved the end result! It is a great reminder to stop and smell the roses. Except for this one. It’s encased in resin. There is a profound proverb in here somewhere…
Currently hailing from a basement shop somewhere in North Carolina, Wes, a.k.a. Geeksmithing, creates geek and nostalgia inspired projects of all kinds using any new material or technique he can get his hands on including anything from 3d printing, cnc, laser cutting, prop making, robotics, electronics to even a bit of woodworking.