I see Mr. Crowley has responded to my recent tests.
I also see he is again trying to make me out to be some bad, bad, person.. I expected no less.
Mr. Crowley states the problem that causes artifacts is simply the "wicking" of the water into the substrate. Well, if that were the case, I would have had "artifacts" when I poured my first cast (using the pumice). That did not happen.. I should have also had "artifacts" when I poured my first cast in the Onion Mountain Soil, that soil allowed for very good "wicking" but, I had no "artifacts" even after sifting material out of the soil (nor did Mr. Crowley in his tests using Onion Mountain Soil, unsifted). Mr. Crowley states (in his opinion) it was the leaves, pine needles and small forest cover which inhibited the production of "artifacts" in the Onion Mountain Soil.
Is Mr. Crowley then saying if the soil you cast in is not prestine, and your casting shows evidence of dermal ridges, they are most likely dermal ridges? I'm not sure where you could cast in the woods, that would not have forest litter??
So, apparently Mr. Crowley is missing something his "Pharmacy degree" isn't telling him (yes, we are all incredibly impressed by your degree in pharmacy). If you are a skeptic, it's ok to be an "Expert" I guess. He also refuses to acknowledge the mixing instructions anyone can find on the
Website. Google "Hanson Cage Mixer", you tell me if that looks like a set of chopsticks or a wooden spoon.. Mr. Crowley also omitted telling Mr. Tuttle he infact used chopsticks for mixing in his multiple e-mails. I can also find no mixing instructions which state "Chopsticks and wooden spoons are appropriate mixing tools for Plaster of Paris".
For those of you reading this right now, ask yourself one very simple question. Had you even considered using "Chopsticks" for stirring your casting agent? Is that something you even considered? If your answer is no, ask yourself why Mr. Crowley is so happy with the use of Chopsticks for stirring his casting agent. In his words "Chopsticks rule".
Why would that be? Unless those chopsticks play a key role in the creation of Artifacts.
I think how serious the problem of air is in the mixing process is clearly defined in this answer on the GypsumSolutions.com website says it all:
Cure A: Use a good plaster. Sift plaster into the water evenly. Do not allow large quantities to fall into the water at one time. Let the plaster soak completely until all particles are wetted. Thoroughly mix with a
Mixer should be high speed (approx. 1,750 rpm).
Does anyone really think this is the advice Gypsumsolutions gives only
when someone has trapped air on the surface of a finished casting project? No, and It would be silly to think so. Does anyone truly think, if you have trapped air on the surface, you will have no trapped air below?? Of course not. This is just simple common sense.
This is almost word for word advice I gave in my final article, and what's funny is I just found this today (3-4-09). I might also add, this above advice from Gypsumsolutions.com
goes completely against the very mixing practices Mr. Crowley said he used in mixing his casting agent (adding water to the plaster of paris, and using chopsticks to stir). Heck, the above quote even addresses the "Whipping" I discussed.
If air is not a problem as Mr. Crowley would like us all to believe, why is that pointed out as a "widespread problem" when mixing and should be guarded against? While this question refers to air on the surface, the answer is discussing the entire issue of air as a "widespread problem". Which is exactly what I was told by Gypsumsolutions.com, and should have thought of sooner in my experiments.
All the information I gave in my current article was factually correct, and supported by the link to the USGypsum website.
In fact, What initially caught my attention in the beginning (and began my involvement) is exactly what the gentleman from USGypsum points out in his e-mail response to Matt Crowley..
Can anyone find that comment? I feel a little vindication.
The gentleman is absolutely correct, I stated this to Crowley, he poo pooed me and never even attempted to respond to that specific issue.
"Wicking" has been an issue, which is why Crowley went with Pumice. Duh... Who does not know that. But, "Wicking" is not the only issue, which is obvious. "Wicking" should tell you, you are casting in a substrate that is capable of pulling moisture out of your casting agent, as it sets. That is good to know. But, in not one of my casts to date, did I ever have "artifacts," when "wicking" was the only result. Wicking is an issue in the Onion Mountain Soil, sample that was collected and sent to me (which I posted pictures of) yet we have no "artifacts" in any testing by myself or Mr. Crowley. So, apparently there is more to this than simple "wicking", where the Onion Mountain Cast is concerned (if you think the alleged dermal ridges are in fact "artifacts").
Who knows the number of casts Matt Crowley has successfully (and unsuccessfully) created "artifacts" in, that is information he refuses
to answer. I have however made that information available upon request, and on this very blog. I have hid nothing about my procedures or methods. The most information I have ever received from Mr. Crowley is:
Heat the water to 100 degrees
Mix your casting agent to the consistency of pancake batter
Pour into track, in one continuous pour
The substrate used should be as fine as Wheat Flour or Powdered Sugar.
These are the "scientific instructions".
That's it. Those are the instructions given to me by Matt Crowley. No, I'm really not leaving anything out. These are the elaborate instructions. What was missing? Chopsticks. I had stirred the casting agent with my hand (in a laytex glove) on all tests prior, and had no artifacts. Once I switched to a wooden spoon, that all changed, along with the amount of air I could visualize in the casting agent prior to pouring.
Lets not forget, one cast the "Elkins Creek Cast" was a track found in wet mud. This cast has alleged "dermal ridge evidence". You can't explain that as an "artifact" using the "wicking" theory. Wicking may be one necessary piece of the puzzle, but it is not the only problem. Neither myself or Mr. Crowley have been able to create "artifacts" in mud.
Which makes for an interesting question.
If Mr. Crowley wants to continue to make this personal, I can not stop him. I will not respond to any further comments by him, as they are not productive and are simply meant to confuse and manipulate those involved in this field of research. If Mr. Crowley would like to actually discuss the work we have BOTH done, I am all for it, but responding to his temper fits and insults of a personal nature will not happen again, I guess in his mind those types of comments double for educated conversation?
His inability to stay on topic and address the issues should make us all wonder what his real motivation is. This is not a contest for me. These tests for me are about finding the truth.
My work is about helping the researchers in the field, as such I will continue to make myself available to ANY researcher who wants to know exactly what I have been finding out. I will not make myself available to those who think insults are a socially acceptable or adult way of behaving in public. Infact, Matt Crowley is the only person, I have ever met, who throws around a degree as if it makes him bullet proof and gives him a free pass to be as insulting as possible.
I may not have a degree in Pharmacy, but I can tell you, Matt Crowley's attitude is not scientific. It is no small wonder people leave this field of research, with people like this running rampant.
Insults replace educated conversation, and that is a shame. I fear for the future of this research, especially if it is allowed to be filled with arrogance and intimidation.
I would also like to add to this article, by saying.
I still do not know why Pumice is being used for testing in comparison to the soil at Onion Mountain, when it is clear, the Onion Mountain Cast was not cast in Pumice. That is certain, not at all a question. These are two very different soil types. If the validity of the Onion Mountain Cast is to be questioned, it is my opinion, we should be testing, using soil from Onion Mountain.
In fact, anytime a cast is in question, testing such as this should be completed in soil from the specific area where the cast was collected, not whatever substrate best suits our specific position.
That is science. Just as having the original cast is ideal for comparisons. Having soil from the original site would be ideal as well.
Once again, common sense.
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