Steel Channel for Weight and Stability
One of the most important aspects of sculpture is the base itself. The base needs to be stable and able to support the weight of the artistic composition. This is a specially very important for metal sculpture. One of my favorite materials to use for sculpture base has been steel channel usually have substantial thickness in size.
There are a Few Ways to Attach a Sculpture Base
As with any dates for sculpture there are usually more than one way to attach it to the main body of the art piece. It could be simply welded right to the sculpture,screwed or tapped, or even adhesives. Other times, it might be best to just drop a hole through the bass like the photo above shows, then force the support rod for the sculpture end of the hole and welded in place from an unseen side.
A Tight Fit is Best
If you’re simply going to drill the hole and insert support rods of the sculpture through the whole then it should be a fairly tight fit. Here you will see that I have to use a 2 pound engineering hammer to get it all the way through the whole to the other side where it will be welded into place once I make sure everything is straight in the way I want to align.
Support Rod Inserted in Mounting Hole and Welded into Place
The above photo was taken after everything was properly aligned and the support right for the sculpture was stuck mounted on the inside of the channel. This gives the base a lot more of a professional look. Out of sight out of mind. To see the sculpture in my Etsy store, please visit this page give you more information or even purchase.
I’ve got the other seven rungs welded onto the table top. On the first row I only measured the very first one. The other three, I merely just eyeballed the measurements as they were not supercritical. I spaced him out evenly so I could what cut off pieces drop through the table if necessary. Also, this gives space for cut off tools I need to go below table little while anchoring the work piece to the table. The other four rungs on the other side were merely just lined up with the opposite side to make it look like a continuous rod going across entire table top.
I did have an issue with the little wobble. So what I did was remeasured the links of the legs as they were welded onto the table. It turned out that the only one leg one is about a quarter inch off. The other two legs were maybe maximum 1/8 of an inch off on the length. So I mark and cut off the excess grinder on the three legs and I set it down on the flat service it was almost perfect.
Above you can see the table with a quarter inch thick plate resting on three of the rungs. This shows the versatility of the table. With this kind of modification, I can work with small pieces as well as larger pieces.
A Metal Working Surfaces for All Weather
I have been working with metal since 2010. All the techniques I know have been self taught by trial and error and watching YouTube video tutorials. Since I do not have a garage, I work on my back patio. And being in the Midwest, I completely at the mercy of the weather. So I need to mindful of rain and other precipitation as well as blazing summer sun.
After finding a 12 gauge 2 foot extension cord at Home Depot, I discovered that my front covered porch can provide the shelter and solace I so much need. Then I had the bright idea to buy some angle iron and build a small portable welding table I could carry around like a stool.
Tabletop Frame Made from Notched Angle Iron
I made the above frame by taking 1/4″ thick 1 1/2″ X 1 1/2″ angle iron and notching two of the pieces so I could interlock and weld them into place without making miter cuts. Also, I wanted to use the four 1/2″ rod I had lying around. Unfortunately, these rods are a couple inches too short to span the fame. So I had a novel solution. Take a 2 inch wide 3/16″ steel strip and cut it to size so I could center it on the frame. With this divider bar, I was able to cut the 4 rods in half and take the smaller pieces and weld them to the frame and the center divider bar.
First rung installed
As stated as above, the center bar did help me use the 1/2″ rods. Even with my careful planning and double measurements, I still barely had 3/8″ to attach the rod to the table top. I still have seven more to attach so stay tuned…