Sunday, June 30, 2013

Amazing Pink Foamular Insulation Foam

Hey everyone, This is a non-NBC post, but it is completely related to NBC in the fact that I used this material in nearly all of the NBC prop tutorials on this blog. I feel that the majority of amateur prop makers might not be aware of this great material:

PINK FOAM



  This post is going to be about the use of Owens Corning pink Foamular insulation foam for crafting and prop making. I found out about this amazing substance sometime in early 2012, and ever since, I use it for EVERYTHING. I wanted to share my knowledge about this foam because i wish i found out about this stuff much
sooner....
  It is an insulation found at Home Depot, used for insulating homes. ( There is also a blue version from Dow, that you can find at Lowe's). It is sold in large 4'x8' sheets. They may have some smaller cut down pieces that vary. Last time I went, my Home depot had 2'x2' squares randomly. Due to its large and awkward size, make sure you are able to fit it in your vehicle (or borrow a truck or van), to get it home. This foam can be cut and carved into limitless shapes and sizes, and comes in a variety of thicknesses. It can be crafted to look like wood, stone, metal, animals, statues etc. You can use knifes, saws, exato blades and  hot-wire foam cutters to shape it. You can paint and sand it, as if it were wood, but its ultra light weight.
The pink foam is pretty durable and able to withstand a variety of heat and weather situations, however, it might be a good idea to waterproof your foam props, especially if they will be out side or in a damp environment. I have had had success painting on a coat of "Drylok" masonry waterproof sealant on. You can buy a pint or gallon at home improvement stores. Once it dries, paint your prop as normal.

objects made from pink foam
 Warning : Acetone, spray paints and excessive heat melt the foam. This could work for you, or against you.

 For example: To achieve certain texture effects, you can use acetone to eat away at the foam.
But, if you finish carving a really detailed project and try to spray paint it, you will watch it melt before your eyes. Hot glue will melt away the foam where ever it touches, so its best to use other types of glues (or non-glues). I found that Aleen's Tacky Glue, and white silicone caulk work well. I have also heard that Glidden Gripper works well at adhering the foam together and it's actually a primer...


Mary Poppins umbrella handle carved out of pink foam
for my Halloween costume 2013







So whatever your craft or prop is, chances are you can use insulation foam to make it. Go to your local Home Depot or Lowe's, get some insulation foam and start experimenting, you will be so glad you did.



.
large NBC skull carved out of pink foam 12"x12"




             
               

34 comments:

  1. I love this insulation foam and price per square inch, the Home Depot version is cheaper than the Lowes version. I've successfully used low-temp glue gun with this phone and even found a super large low-temp glue gun for bigger projects. Thank you for sharing your insight on this great product!

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  2. Ope, I guess my glue gun runs too hot! Thanks for the info :)

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  3. You are amazing....love ...love....love your work! Do you know if the pink foam would work for Halloween mask?

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    1. Hey Charity, Thank you....And yes, I believe you could make a mask out of this foam. However, it is a building material, so make sure that you completely seal the foam with non-toxic paint before putting it on your face all night. In addition, the home improvement stores sell this foam in 8'x4' sheets for about $30, so if your only looking to make a small mask, it might not be worth it. Good luck and let me know if you have any other questions
      -K

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    2. My local home depot sells it for $12 per sheet.

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  4. Do you think it would work for outdoor Halloween decorations?

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    1. Oh yes people use the foam to make tombstones for their outdoor graveyard scenes all the time just make sure you put a coat of sealer on it like dry lock before you paint it and you'll be good to go. Hope that helps.
      Thanks
      -K

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  5. You are an artist and a genius, thank you so much for taking the time to post all these tutorials. I am also an avid Tim Burton fan and I'm gonna have a sweet yard for halloween this year, thanks to your blog!

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    1. Angie, thank you so much. You are exactly the reason why I decided to make this blog. I hope your props come out well. If you remember, send some pics my way, I would love to see how they come out! Im in the middle of biulding Lock & Shock. I really appreciate the kind words.
      -K

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    2. Your tutorials are excellent, and thanks so much for posting! I have created 3 NBC props to date following your guidelines, and they have turned out great! Please continue to share your work with us novices, as you are truly an inspiration!

      Thanks,

      Kurt

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    3. Thank you so much Kurt. Which 3 props have you made? Would love to see pics.

      I enjoy being able to hear from and connect to anyone who finds this blog interesting. When i started this blog, I didnt think anyone would ever find it, so its amazing to hear from all of you. And thank you!
      -K

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  6. No problem at all. I have made the count down clock, madame leota prop (added visual image of Leota talking via projection), and of course a lifesize Jack Skellington! I will certainly send you pics once I get everything out of storage soon for 2013's Halloween party. I think next in queue for build will be a bunch of skulls for the outside of the house....

    Kurt

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  7. Here's my email as well - piratesofreno@gmail.com; if you want to send me an email I will respond back with some pics...

    Kurt

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  8. I was literally just looking at this product on the home depot website while looking for materials and tools to make weapon props for a cosplay of mine. I'm thinking of trying it out. Is acrylic paint safe to use on it?

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    1. Yes I have successfully used acrylic paint and interior water based paint on the insulation foam. Do not use spray paint! ! -K

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  9. how do you smooth it out?

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    1. Sand it with a fine grit sandpaper.

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  10. Omg im a huge NBC fan! Thank you for having this blog with your amazing creations. I've been looking into making props and im glad I found your blog. I love your barrel guy cant wait to see your lock and shock guys.

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  11. Can you use a Dremel at low speed as a fine sanding tool to achieve curves and edges or do you recommend doing it by hand, with a blade and fine sand paper?

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    1. I would recommend to just hand sand with fine grit. The foam is so soft, it doesn't take much to smooth it out. If you use a Dremel it may get too hot at high speeds and melt the foam.

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  12. I was going to use this to make a NBC prop to (kind of) frame my bathroom mirror but Im afraid of the humidity. What could I use to seal it? And would I seal it before or after I paint it?
    PS this blog is a life saver! My entire home with soon be NBC all year round!

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    1. make sure you put a coat of sealer on it like dry lock before you paint it and you'll be good to go. Hope that helps.
      Thanks

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  13. Great work, Kristie! You've produced some real quality pieces and I enjoyed your tutorials. Thanks so much for sharing. I too enjoy sculpting and creating using foamular, eps, etc. (mainly for various projects for my home haunt). Anyway, I know you mentioned Home Depot as a source, but they haven't had any around the Orange County, CA area for a couple years (although this year they did have small 1"x2'x2' sheets at a much higher price). Do you have another source you don't mind sharing. Most suppliers are either super expensive or require a large order. FYI, as it happens right now, the Lakewood, CA Home Depot has 2"x4'x8' ($30) sheets and .5"x4'x8 ($15) sheets. I assume the shipment was probably meant for Lakewood, CO. I also assume they won't keep getting shipments, so if you know of another source in the area, I'd appreciate the info. Looks like you might live nearby, so if you don't have a regular supplier, you might want to head over there and pick some up before it's all gone.

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    1. EUREKA! Thanks for the info and quick reply. Guess I'll be heading over to the H.B. store after work today to check. Seems the people at Home Depot don't even know they've made shipments to SoCal! Looking forward to seeing more of your projects in the future.

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  14. I've a question!!! the foamular is for "rude use"? i mean, I want to make a big sword, so one of my options is the foamular, but i like to play with my swords and props. It can easily break? or how does it works?
    Some guy told me to apply crystal resin but i'm not sure about that.

    Any recomendation or advisement?

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    1. The thinner it is cut the more breakable it will be. The props I make are not touched or knocked around that much so I have not had to use a hardener or protective coating. I have not used any resin and am not much help in this area. Maybe someone else knows and can comment.

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  15. How do you achieve a gloss finish on foamular

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  16. Hi! Thank you for the valuable insight! If I put one coat of the waterproof sealant on the foam first, would spray paint still melt the foam?

    Thank you!

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  17. Honestly I still think it will melt

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  18. This is by far the most amazing, crafty blog I've ever come across. Thank you so much for sharing your talent! Do you mainly use the 2" thick foam? My Home Depot only carries the 1" so I thought I could double up if that's the case. :)

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  19. Can you use the white insalation fome boards instead of the pink

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    1. NO, IT IS NOT THE SAME CONSISTANCY. USE PINK (HOME DEPOT) OR BLUE (LOWES)

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