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28 Aug 2009 - 10:0318881
Etching foam
I'm working on Elrond's armour for October, and I've hit a problem.

It has a vine pattern etched into the metal, which I'm not sure how to recreate on foam. This site says that it's raised, but from looking at the film and the special features on the EE I'm pretty sure it is etched.

Is there an easy way to do this at home? I don't have many tools, and can't afford to buy anything at the moment, but need to finish it before I go back to uni in mid september.


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-an Angel that didn't so much Fall as Saunter Vaguely Downwards-
28 Aug 2009 - 13:2218888
all the armour in LotR is acid etched, which means detail can either be raised or sunk. ofcourse, you can't do that on foam ;p

your options to make it look right are sort of limited, but that doesn't mean it's impossible...

if you want it to be a sunken detail, use a soldering iron and reeeeeally gently melt the pattern into the foam.

if you want raised, it's a bit of a longer ordeal, but looks amazing. get a nice big sheet of non porus material (glass, acetate, w/e) sculpt the detail onto that with non drying clay, then make a plaster mold from the finished sculpt. once the mold's dry, fill it with latex, let it dry, trim off any excess and glue the resulting cast to the armour with impact adhesive.

easy! ;D


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28 Aug 2009 - 14:3218895
Or you could use a glue gun for raised


28 Aug 2009 - 15:2418899
Thanks guys!

I'd already thought over all these methods and discarded them. XD;; Latex is too expensive, and we don't have a soldering iron, and I don't think I would be neat enough with a glue gun. >>;;

I'm sort of thinking that painting the pattern on might be my best bet, but I'm not that good at it, so I'll have to see what I can come up with.

Thank you though!


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-an Angel that didn't so much Fall as Saunter Vaguely Downwards-
28 Aug 2009 - 15:3518902
If you're not sure about gluegun, you could glue piping/string down for a raised effect.

You should get some nice effects with painting the shading on too, go with what you're comfortable doing


28 Aug 2009 - 15:5418903
Quote Amy-Lou:
Or you could use a glue gun for raised


using a glue gun is really irratic, it looks great on "worn" armour (see my witch king) but for pristine armour, it's really hard to control


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28 Aug 2009 - 16:2318906
Quote xaerael:
using a glue gun is really irratic, it looks great on "worn" armour (see my witch king) but for pristine armour, it's really hard to control


Yeah, it is pretty fiddly and takes some practice. The great thing about it is you can put a hair dryer on it after to re-melt mistakes and if you add more glue then it'll all smooth out under gravity

I've been using it lately on thin funky foam jewellery for a curved enamel effect as it grips the edges and won't go over.


28 Aug 2009 - 16:3818910
Quote Amy-Lou:
Quote xaerael:
using a glue gun is really irratic, it looks great on "worn" armour (see my witch king) but for pristine armour, it's really hard to control


Yeah, it is pretty fiddly and takes some practice. The great thing about it is you can put a hair dryer on it after to re-melt mistakes and if you add more glue then it'll all smooth out under gravity


A hair dryer eh? That's a brilliant idea! Why didn't I think of that!? XD All this time I've been using a normal lighter to remelt it and I once dosed off watching it melt and melted the foam itself lolol, oopsie.

Will use the hair drying method in the future m'thinks xD


28 Aug 2009 - 17:1918913
String is a good idea. I might have a go with that. Thank you!

Quote Amy-Lou:

Yeah, it is pretty fiddly and takes some practice. The great thing about it is you can put a hair dryer on it after to re-melt mistakes and if you add more glue then it'll all smooth out under gravity

I've been using it lately on thin funky foam jewellery for a curved enamel effect as it grips the edges and won't go over.


...Genius.

I need to use this tip. I'm not sure what on, but I will find something.


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-an Angel that didn't so much Fall as Saunter Vaguely Downwards-
23 Oct 2009 - 08:5821353
I made this armor a few years back, ask sephirayne, and used gold fabric paint to do the design details, if you mess up you can just smooth it out and it blends with the armor anyway, I'm gonna have the same problem with the haldir armor, so fabric paint is the way I'm goign despite the designs being etched, it looks fine, trust me. lol


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