I constructed 2 wood molds, of which the main mold is shown above in 2 pieces prior to assembly. The double layers of plywood are staggered to prevent iron from leaking out of the mold as the wood burns and expands. After assembly all seams and joints were sealed with 3000 degree refractory cement for added security.
The resulting main casting turned out fantastic, with an amazing texture and surface that I did not expect. It turned out far heavier than I anticipated, at least 80lbs, as once the wooden mold began to burn when in contact with the molten iron, the interior space increased and as a result, so did the overall mass.
The voice you can hear on the videos talking about iron casting and the process is that of James "Dudders" Dudley, a fellow artist, maker, and ECU alum. Thank you for the unintentional narration, sir. Check out an awesome podcast he is involved with along with a host of other highly talented and creative individuals, Damn Art Majors.