Well, that was encouraging. I just wish the author would say
, not "powder metals."
The other article didn't mention the properties of powdered metals that this one does. Now it makes even better sense. So, basically, all I'd need is some powdered bronze, a binder to mix it with, and some silicon carbide bricks to form an enclosure with. I wonder if you have to completely enclose the piece, or if you can leave a little "window" to view it and reach in to get the part out? It kind of looked that way in the photos that were published with Reid's article.
I'm in favor of microcrsytalline wax as the binder, myself. It's readily available, can be melted down for mixing with the bronze powder, then can be cast in a mold while still liquid. Once cooled, it can be placed in the microwave, where it will readily burn out, leaving the sintered bronze powder. My only concern about wax is that it might burn out too quickly and the bronze, if not sintered yet, could collapse without the wax to support it. Then again, I think the wax burning would probably accelerate the sintering process, so it might work out fine. Other than wax, what could be used as a binder that is relatively inexpensive?
Another thing about using wax is that it can be worked after the bronze powder's been mixed into it, thus, you wouldn't have to pour it into a mold, you could just model it directly. I wonder how easily it would model or carve with bronze powdered infused throughout? It might be a little more dense and less pliable, I would think. But, I remember seeing mention of a product called "gold wax," which is powdered gold suspended in microcrystalline wax and what little I read about it said it's workable by hand.