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What is Casting? What is Molding?

Casting is an “indirect” method of creating objects. First, an exact model of the desired object is created out of easy to work materials like clay, wax, or wood. The model can even be a found object. Next, a mold is made around this model, creating a hollow cavity. Finally, liquid material (hot or cold) is poured into the mold cavity. The cast material solidifies, the object is removed, and cleaned.

In our shop, Molding refers to a process of laying a sheet of pliable material (hot or cold) over, or into, a form of the desired shape. The sheet material hardens and is removed from the form.

The resulting cast or molded object can be a stand-alone piece or joined to create an assembly. Both casting and molding processes rely on creating molds or forms of the desired shape or object.

What are some benefits to Casting & Molding?

Some benefits of casting and molding include: ease of creating complex detail otherwise difficult to fabricate directly, ease of creating multiples, and ease of duplicating existing objects in another material.

What Casting & Molding tools and capabilities do we have?

Our 2,500 square foot Casting & Molding Department is outfitted for both hot and cold casting and molding processes as follows:

 Foundry (Hot Metal Casting):

  • Materials: Aluminum, Silicon Bronze

  • Mold-Making Materials: Resin-Bonded Sand, Green Sand, Investment (for the lost wax or lost PLA process)

  • Crucible Casting: #30 Crucible Propane Furnace (30 lbs. Aluminum / 90 lbs. Bronze)

  • Centrifugal Casting Machine

  • (2) Burn-Out Kilns (17” x 26”, 23” x 27”)

  • Wax Steamer (24” x 18” x 20”)

 Cold Casting:

  • Materials: Plaster, Wax, Concrete, Rubber

  • Mold-Making Materials: Alginate, Rubber, Plaster


  • Dedicated Abrasives Room

  • Dayton 15” Vertical Bandsaw

  • Craftsman 15” Drill Press

  • (2) 6" Bench Grinders

  • 4-1/2" Angle Grinders

  • 1/4" Die Grinder w/ Flex Shaft

  • Dremel Tool w/ Flex Shaft

  • Access to Metal Shop Sandblast Cabinet

  • Access to Metal Shop Buffing/Polishing Machine


  • Access to Metal Shop MIG/TIG Welders

Patina and Protective Finishing:

  • Acces to Metal Shop Dedicated Finishing Room and Spray Booth

  • Chemical and Finishing Supply Storage


  • Assortment of hand and power tools

  • Access to Metal Shop and Wood Shop during Class times, with Instructor Guidance

  • Access to Metal Shop and Wood Shop during Open Studio Access, with appropriate STUCs

  • Material and Supplies offered for purchase in Department Shop

  • Storage for Material, Supplies, and Projects in Department Shop

Become a Member of CIADC and receive discounted tuition and Studio Access rates!

Studio Access is work time outside of Class time, and available to all current Students and former Students.


2019 Holiday Immersion Weeks

December 9-13 -or- December 16-20

Winter 2020 Adult Core Classes

January 6-March 15

Fall 2019 Teen Classes: Saturday Afternoons

C-Session (Sat. Only): November 30-December 28

Winter 2020 Teen Classes: Monday, Wednesday, and Saturday Afternoons

A-Session: January 6-February 9; B-Session: February 10-March 15

Private Instruction


Winter 2020 Safety and Tool Use Certification

For Open Studio Access January 6-March 29