I stopped by the factory and visitor center of Prince August while on vacation in Ireland The factory is located to the west of Cork just outside a small town called Macroom. Signs along the road point the way.

Prince August was founded in Sweden by Jan Edman and moved to Ireland in 1976. In 1987, Lars Edman (Jan’s son) began the Mithril line of Middle Earth figures intended for the ICE RPG. The sculptor was Chris Tubb, who remains until today Prince August’s solitary sculptor. In addition to the Mithril line, Prince August makes hundreds of other sculpts: Irish heroes, various military figures, and Chess sets. They also produce lines of miniatures called Warzone and Chronopia (the latter aka Drakar och Demoner), originally for a game set in the Mutant Chronicles world by Target Games from Sweden. The game is now owned by its daughter company Paradox Entertainment. Licenses were briefly given to Excelsior Entertainment (which went on to become Cauldron Born) and COG Games (as usual, it’s all very convoluted). The games are not in production, but it appears that the minis still are (although some were destroyed).

However, Prince August’s focus doesn’t appear to be selling the figures, but the molds and modeling kits for you to make the figures yourself. Each kit comes with a prepared mold, clamps, metal, brush, pan, instructions, etc.

See the process of miniature making, mold making, and more of what the store has to offer after the break.

Using the Molds

The process works as follows:

Spread some of the white powder onto both sides of the mold and then tap/knock the powder off. I forgot what the powder is, and why this is necessary.

Place the two pieces of the mold together.

Place the wooden pieces on either side of the mold pieces to strengthen the sides.

Attach the clamps. The mold is ready to use.

The metal can be heated in the pan on any normal cooktop. WARNING: The metal is mostly lead-based, so use the standard cautions that apply to handling lead.

Quickly pour the molten metal into the mold. Most people lift the pan too slowly, and by the time the metal reaches the mold it has already started to cool – it cools quickly. After pouring the metal into the mold, knock/tap the sides of the mold several times to let out any air bubbles.

The mold is ready in a few minutes. Use the wire cutters to cut off the unnecessary part of the figure (the slot into which you poured the metal) and use the firm brush to smooth the surface down.

That’s it.

The Making of the Molds

Chris sends master sculpts to Prince August, which uses them to make the molds.

It starts with rubber …

… and the mater sculpt.

Into the machine, and voila.

Into the box they go.

Spin Casting

For making their own miniatures, Prince August uses spin-casting, a process I described in my post about Iron Wind Metals.

Pouring into the spinner.

Unpacking the spins

Ready to cut.


It surprised me that they were working with such high lead content. When I asked them, they acknowledged that some places have a problem with this; their packing includes warnings. And a small amount of their products are pewter-only, but they say that pewter doesn’t work well. When I asked the above lady doing the spin casting if she was working with pewter-only or lead metal, she didn’t know!

I hope she washes her hands after work.

For Sale

Here’s a little of what they have to offer.

I don’t know much about miniatures, but these are probably pretty cheap.

A chess set.

And another.

Bye bye, Prince August.