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06 Jan 2009 - 13:269214
Shaping styrofoam
Having already bought a wig with two pigtails for my Viola, I'm now looking into how to make her ox horns. I figure that the best thing to do is to get a couple of styrofoam shapes (I was thinking of these eggs, since I can't find suitably-sized cones anywhere) and wrap extensions around them as per Angelphie's tutorial, but I'm going to have to do some carving on the eggs to get them the right shape. Naturally, I'm concerned about getting the shape right and keeping them even while I work! Has anyone ever done anything similar with styrofoam before? Any tips?


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06 Jan 2009 - 13:499217
tbh ive moved completely off styrofoam i never get the results i want with it im mostly polystyrine if i can get it or heat morphed plasticard with most things, there just seems to be alot more you can get, but let me know how it turns out, its a really cheap and easy solution ^.^


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06 Jan 2009 - 14:069218
That's quite an interesting one.

I've used polystrene before, though I have no idea about the difference between the two materials. I found that carving it was very messy (because the bobbles get everywhere) and pretty much impossible to get anything even.

Maybe building up instead of carving down? that way you can cut out a semi circle (or other shape), make a pair of cones and you'll know that they'll match. Maybe using something like craft foam and hot glue? That way you'll know it's lightweight because it's hollow and they'll be slightly soft in case anyone hits them.

Tab


06 Jan 2009 - 15:549222
Hmm... I think I'm being a bit dense, I thought polystyrene and styrofoam were pretty much the same things, but Wikipedia seems to suggest otherwise (and I'm still not sure what the difference is...).

Quote Uber-Nerd:
Maybe building up instead of carving down? that way you can cut out a semi circle (or other shape), make a pair of cones and you'll know that they'll match. Maybe using something like craft foam and hot glue? That way you'll know it's lightweight because it's hollow and they'll be slightly soft in case anyone hits them.

When you say craft foam, do you mean the funky foam stuff that they sell in sheets? Would that be sturdy enough to keep its shape?


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06 Jan 2009 - 16:149223
Easy fiberglass & Styrofoam DIY
Quote Sillabub:
Has anyone ever done anything similar with styrofoam before? Any tips?


I made Desert Punks Shotgun from Styrofoam I bought at B&Q. It is the same kind of stuff they pack TVs with. Its ok to work with once you get the hang of it.

What I did was hack the basic shape out with a Hacksaw blade then sanded it smooth and covered it with fiberglass dipped in non toxic woodglue. Let the glue and fiberglass dry then sand it down and paint it whatever color you want.Woodglue acts as a good resin for basic strofoam.

If you do not cover the Styrofoam with some sort of non-CFC based fiberglass, the paint will eat right though it and it will brake very easy. If you use this method DO NOT, use any sort of chemical based fiberglass resin since it will catch fire and could explode. Wood glue from B&Q does the job quite nicely and looks good.

I will post pictures later since I am at work now.


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Last edited by nadesico81 (06 Jan 2009 - 16:18)
06 Jan 2009 - 16:379225
Thanks, although I don't need to paint it, just get it into the right shape so I can wrap some hair extensions round it.


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06 Jan 2009 - 17:059228
I haven't tried it myself but I thought I'd throw this idea out to see what you though.

Have you considered upholstery foam? It's used to form the basis of furry suits and it seems easy to carve with a cheap electric breadknife, well so odangochan tells me.

It could be pinned in place and would give the desired shape and still be light. It's a suggestion but as I say I have never tried it myself.


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06 Jan 2009 - 17:259230
Quote theKillingDoll:
I haven't tried it myself but I thought I'd throw this idea out to see what you though.

Have you considered upholstery foam? It's used to form the basis of furry suits and it seems easy to carve with a cheap electric breadknife, well so odangochan tells me.

It could be pinned in place and would give the desired shape and still be light. It's a suggestion but as I say I have never tried it myself.


This is a good idea, I've used upholstery foam as the base for bulky hair shapes and chunky armour spikes. It carves very well, super light, super cheap, doesn't dissolve in solvents and as you're sticking hair all over it you won't come across the main problem of surfacing it


06 Jan 2009 - 18:009239
I actually had considered upholstery foam - there's a textiles place near my flat that usually has a big box of upholstery foam chunks in it for very little and was wondering how well it would work in the place of polystyrene/styrofoam. I may well give that a try, since people have gotten good results from it before - thanks!


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Cara bell', cara mia bella, mia bambina, o ciel!
06 Jan 2009 - 20:289250
If you want to get a good finish when working with polystyrene (and I presume Styrofoam) you need to use heat.
Your primary tool is a heat cutter, maybe called a polystyrene cutter - available in a good model shop. There only a few pounds and basically consist of a tensioned piece of wire that's heated by having an electrical current passed though it. One of my favorite bits of kit!


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06 Jan 2009 - 20:549253
So you’ve had plenty good suggestions, just thought I’d throw this out there:

Quote Sillabub:
Thanks, although I don't need to paint it, just get it into the right shape so I can wrap some hair extensions round it.


Painting it isn’t necessarily a bad idea, since if the hair extensions shift at all, then it won’t be so obvious if you have the same colour underneath. But it doesn’t necessarily have to be paint, if you don’t have a suitable surface for it. You could cover your shapes in fabric, then glue the extensions over that. It means you might not need quite so many extensions, nor as much precision positioning them nicely. Not necessary, but it’s an easy step to take which might make life easier later on!


06 Jan 2009 - 23:179264
Thanks for the input, everyone! I guess I have some experimenting to do...


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Cara bell', cara mia bella, mia bambina, o ciel!
07 Jan 2009 - 09:459273
I would just say you cold cut the bluk off with a saw then use a file or a rasp, finally power sand the rest to a smooth finish...

It sounds crazy but does work

Thats what i did for the allen walker arm which was 3 huge sheets stuck together

It was very messy tho i even ended up vaccuming the garden lol


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07 Jan 2009 - 11:519277
Quote Ilpala:

Your primary tool is a heat cutter, maybe called a polystyrene cutter - available in a good model shop. There only a few pounds and basically consist of a tensioned piece of wire that's heated by having an electrical current passed though it. One of my favorite bits of kit!


I want one of those now it will save my house from looking like it snowed inside after cuting Styrofoam.

What I want to know is will this tool cut a clean and even edge in the kind of Styrofoam that they pack TVs in? That stuff tends NOT to like heat or any sort of HFC based paint, solvents & resins.


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07 Jan 2009 - 14:179287
Quote Ilpala:
If you want to get a good finish when working with polystyrene (and I presume Styrofoam) you need to use heat.
Your primary tool is a heat cutter, maybe called a polystyrene cutter - available in a good model shop. There only a few pounds and basically consist of a tensioned piece of wire that's heated by having an electrical current passed though it. One of my favorite bits of kit!


I second this notion, thats how I made my Ixion horn. Its really easy to use, and also as Mike said, sand it down loads afterwards as well.


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