Proving a concept, one Saturday afternoon. @ianauch inspired project. This thread. Nacre is the mineral, lining the shells of Mollusks, it’s what a pearl is made of. (on a side note, an Octopus is a mollusk, with roughly the intellect of a cat. That makes it the genius of the family!)
ianauch was kind enough to post his source, and I would have it. The stuff is gorgeous. I was admiring it, and it hit me. Snowflakes.
I was originally thinking of wood, but the thought of the cool color of blue acrylic, and it won the day. Blue and teal (the catalog says teal, the barcode sticker on it says Turquoise).
The new concept here is the bonding agent, Bondic. A UV curing compound that is about the viscosity of syrup.
The really cool thing about it is it stays fluid until hit with the near UV LED. Unlimited working time.
The pen tip is small so it fits well into detail. Flood the bottom of the default dark engrave, and sprinkle the flakes on.
And sanded to level from 220 to 1500 wet or dry paper. Mask is really handy, acrylic is soft and dust will scratch it, so the mask is good protection - if you pay attention and don’t cut too far. In a jewelry inlay, nugget or chip, you cut both surfaces simultaneously to a perfect level. The inlay is still a couple of thousandths proud, but plenty close for a smooth feel.
wondering about the full cure, because if it’s shaded it won’t cure. Held a chip under light and sure enough, the flakes are translucent. I don’t know, but I presume a smaller wavelength would have even better penetration. Neat stuff to work with.
No man. I looked over and my eye landed on it… Hmmm.
Bondic is how I got introduced to this stuff but if you find your self using a lot of it, there are kits by other companies that are FAR more economical. You can get a fair sized bottle and a permanent UV flashlight pretty reasonable.
That stuff is just resin that’s used in SLA/DLP 3D printers. You can get cheap resin around $50/liter with free shipping, (you can buy in half liter size, but usually runs around $30). $50 seems like a lot, but ends up being cheaper if you are going to be using a lot Bondic. And you can get the printer resin in various colors (translucent colors too).
There also laser pointers that can be used to harden the resin (The light needs to be 405nM) - usually under $10 on eBay.