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Pin with wheel-head

Original
 
Found: Weerdinge, Drenthe, Netherlands
Age: middle bronze age

These pins are only found in woman's graves. Two of these pins were probably used to hold a cloak together. The pins are decorated with wheels, a common theme for decorations in this period. In this grave, two wheel-headed pins, two other pins, a bracelet, a ring and a chain of amber beads were found. Six wheel-headed pins are known from the Netherlands and also a clay mould from Os-Horzak, with which one could be cast.

 
Mould
 
After several failed attempts in clay moulds, I decided to make a permant stone mould. The clay moulds are a lot of work to make, and only last one casting. So instead of clay I went for a stone mould, which is a lot less work. While making the mould, I accidentally stumbled on a perfect way to make matching halves: by filling the carved shape on one half with dust from the stone, placing the other half on top and turning it over, a perfect shape of the pin is deposited on the other half. This can be traced around, after which the stone is removed within the lines, creating a perfect mirror copy of the other half.

Casting result
 
Here are some of the cast pins. Two are missing bits of spokes, due to blockage from cast in bits of charcoal and another has to much flashing inside the holes to remove. But two pins are good castings and suitable to finish into pins.