Cast #038 - Aluminum Carpenter Ant Colony Casting

Aluminum Carpenter Ant Colony Cast #038 - Front Picture.
Ant Type: Carpenter Ants (Camponotus castaneus)

Cast Number: #038
Created: 9/20/2013
Cast Weight: 2.5 lb

Cast Material: Aluminum
Cast Dimensions: 12"x13"x18" (HxWxL)

Base: Stained Wood Rectangle
Base Dimensions: 0.75"x7.5"x10.5" (HxWxL)

Mount: Various (See Description Below)
Orientation: Upside Down
This carpenter ant colony cast has a very interesting and chaotic structure compared to the other carpenter ant colony casts I have made. The other carpenter ant colony casts typically have a single tunnel which goes generally straight down in to the ground with long chambers extending off the main tunnel. This colony has a single entrance tunnel which goes more to the side than it does deep. The main tunnel splits into two a few inches below the surface and twists into the ground with several long thin chambers extending outward, some of which overlap each other. The two tunnels that split from the main entrance tunnel eventually meet again near the bottom of the cast.
Base Description
This cast was very difficult to mount because of its erratic structure. Because the cast is oriented so much to the side of the entrance tunnel, it was not possible to mount with a single bolt through the main entrance, which is how I usually mount similar casts. So I had to attach two supports to the base in order to keep the cast stable (seen here and here) in addition to a bolt through the cast at the colony entrance. The two supports have stainless steel dowels which runs through the cast and the supports and is secured with epoxy. I usually purchase precut bases but for this cast, I cut a plain oak board to size, routed the edges, and stained with Danish oil, which soaks into the wood and doesn't require a clear coat. As usual the base has a stainless steel plaque engraved with cast information.