I've decided to put together a basic "how-to" guide that covers making liquid silicone molds and plastic resin molding and casting. I learned quite a bit over the last 5 years about silicone rubber while building my B9 Robot and more than 35 Twilight Zone Mystic Seers replicas. Hopefully you will pick up a few tips here that will help you avoid some of the pitfalls. These silicone rubber mold making tips can be used by the hobbyist who want to create molds for making chocolate, or to create soap molds and candle molds as well. When making food molds, be sure to only use food safe silicone materials. If you wanted to know what silicone is or how to use it for molding, you have come to the right place. This is the same type of mold making used by all prototype plastic molders as well as short run plastic molders. I've added links to most of the necessary supplies where available at Amazon.
If you're going to get serious in molding, you'll want to purchase a vacuum pump. I got mine on eBay for about $100. It's an industrial pump and it is very rugged. You may want to buy one of the smaller hobby vacuum pumps available, but I went for the commercial one as it should last me longer, and it actually cost about the same. You want one that can pull 29 "inches of mercury" for a complete vacuum. There are several Vacuum Pumps on Amazon that will do the trick.
First, a few things you'll need. Get yourself a good 400+ piece basic set of LEGOS. Yes, I said LEGOS! If you're lucky you have a son that went through the LEGOS phase. If you're like me, you may still have yours from when you were young. Either way, they are a must if you want to quickly make molds of various sizes. You want a set with just the basic pieces and none of the fancy special pieces. Unfortunately, most of Lego sets now contain so many smaller or specialty pieces that you can't get enough of the longer 2x4, 2x8 and 2x10 pieced needed for mold making. Out of necessity, you need to turn to the alternative Legos brick manufacturers. The imitation Legos!
These Lego wannabe's save you some money and provided the larger pieces you will need for mold making. So, take a look at the imitation Lego sets on Amazon. While they are not as good, quality wise, as genuine Legos, the 1000 piece Building Block sets includes many more of the larger pieces you will need when making your molds and they are less than half the price.
Bonus Fact: The name "Lego" is derived from the Danish phrase "leg godt", which means "play well".
You may want to pick up one of the "starter" molding liquid silicone rubber kits and plastic resin kits. I have tried kits from both Smooth-On and Por-a-Cast. I prefer Smooth-On as they offer so many different products. Smooth-On has what they call a "Mold Making and Casting Pourable Starter Kit" that contain enough rubber for several small molds and dozens of small resin parts.