Making sculpture has been a hobby, or a full-time job, since time immemorial. Ancient sculptures have been unearthed from almost every period of human history and modern sculptures continue to be created from all kinds of materials. Learning how to make metal art animals can be a fun pastime that brightens up any home or garden.
- Skill level:
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Things you need
- Pencil and paper
- Whiteboard marker
- Metal sheets
- Metal file
- Welding tools
Sketch your design on a piece of paper. Bold designs work best as they have less complex twirls and other features that will need cutting and shaping in the finished product. Draw the size and shape of each individual piece of the animal you will be building onto different sheets of paper, using your original sketch as a guide.
Cut out the shapes you drew and use these as stencils to draw your shapes onto your sheets of metal using a pencil or whiteboard marker pen. You should now have a series of metal shapes to cut out that, when assembled, will form a recognisable metal art animal in 3-D.
Cut out your metal shapes using your hacksaw. File off any rough surfaces using a metal file. Place the pieces on a hard surface such as a portable anvil and bend them into shape using a hammer. When all your pieces are prepared, weld them into position. Allow the metal art animal to cool before touching.
Tips and warnings
- Cutting out metal shapes can be difficult and time consuming. It is much easier to cut the pieces to roughly the right shape with the hacksaw and then bind them in a vice while you file the last of the excess metal off. If you choose this method, use a file designed for filing metal and ensure that you wear safety goggles to protect yourself from stray fragments.
- Cutting, filing and welding metal are all dangerous activities. Working with metal can cause many injuries, including burns, and damage to the eyes. Be sure to wear protective clothing such as gloves, long-sleeved shirts, safety goggles and, when welding, a welder's mask and apron.
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