Concrete Easter Eggs: Look Out Below! - Nick Martin
Tools and Materials:
- Stirring stick
- Sand paper
- Plastic Easter eggs
- Empty egg carton(s)
- Quikrete or similar fast drying mortar
- Plastic tubs
- Disposable gloves
- Vaseline or grease
- Razor knife
- Small chisel or file
- Drill or grinding wheels (or hot nail)
1) Prepare a few Easter eggs by removing the inner sprue, if they have any that will catch on the glande and make it more difficult to remove, and then drill or grind a small hole in both halves to ventilate and assist drying. You can use the longer halves from two eggs for a bi-conical (football) shape, or simply use them as is for an egg-shaped glande. If you want to make more spherical glandes, trim the excess lip off the bottom halves with a razor knife and then sand the edge smooth; by mating the two lower halves, you will get an almost spherical glande.
2) Mix Quikrete and water in a small tub and stir to firmness; add mix or water as needed so that it is about like cottage cheese but not runny, and be sure it is well mixed and without air pockets or dry particles.
3) Grease the inside of the egg molds, top and bottom
4) Fill and match the mold sides; allow excess to run out and then wipe outside of mold. Be sure to fill to excess and then squeeze out the excess by pressing one egg half onto the other (otherwise you may have voids).
5) Set in egg carton to dry for about four hours – this is not critical if you have greased the molds well. Minimum times will vary with temperature, humidity, and the moisture level of the mix.
6) Carefully remove the top half of the mold and allow the concrete to continue drying for another hour or so, as the glande will be able to dry much faster out of the mold. If removed too soon, they may still be runny and your glande will lose shape. If so, re-shape it with a wet finger and/or carefully replace the top of the mold, which is more easily done if the glande is turned upside down. If you notice any voids, there may still be time to patch them with a little more mixture before they have dried to the point that it won’t bond.
If, in contrast, the glande has dried too much, it may stick to the mold and break in half when you try to remove it. If it sticks so much that you can’t easily remove it, don’t force it or it is sure to break in half. Let it dry overnight and then saw or buzz through the plastic with a grinding wheel and it will peel off easily (be careful not to grind into the glande). As an option leave it in place and sling it that way – egg mold and all. Incidentally, expect a loss rate of both glandes and egg molds – both are cheap and easy to replace.
7) Carefully remove moist glande from mold and then set back in the carton to dry for a week or more. Keeping them in the sun or a warm room will accelerate drying. The color will change from dark to light as it dries, but remember that it may remain moist inside for several days and thus not yet strong enough to throw without breakage. The finished weight should be about 100 grams for the spherical and 135 for the bi-conical.
8) Paint them if you wish to make it easier to retrieve after throwing.
Please note that all of this is from my very limited experience, and so improvements and helpful suggestions are both welcome and expected.
- Nick Martin (4accord)