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I Forge Iron

aluminum plate


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If you preheat the sheets there should be no problems with moisture or anything.
However, the sheet will most likely flex and deform and you won't be even close to a flat plate. Aluminum has too much surface tension to settle flat in an open mold as is evident by any ingots you have made being somewhat bubbled over. A big reason you use closed molds when making actual items.

Getting set up with green sand is fairly easy. Lost foam is a very cheap starter way to make items for the cost of a bag of sand. I don't think you will get the results you are looking for though without a little investment.

Believe it or not a hole in the ground can suffice as a mold, again most likely with unsatisfactory results. That's how pig iron got its name. The open molds cut in the sand at the base of the furnace resembled a mother pig and suckling piglets

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When they say hole in the ground, it's not just a pit someone dug. More than likely an explosive splattering of molten aluminum would occur. Any moisture would cause an instant steam explosion. Those pig iron molds were done with very dry sand because of the heat of the giant furnaces being on well before the pour.

For safety and speed, just go to your local metal dealer and buy some aluminum plate. You will get exactly what you want in the size you want very easily and safely. You can usually get remnant pieces of aluminum for less than $2 pound. I've even gotten it on sale for < $1 pound.

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