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07 April 2005 @ 12:13 pm
automail question  
I'm building a set of automail out of the craft foam and was wondering if silver spray paint would be a good thing to use to color it? My only fear is that it would melt the foam, I doubt it but I remember a long ago attempt by my brother to paint his rain gutter regatta boat (styrofoam that year for some reason) and it melting.
I was having some problems with sharpie experiments (it rubbed off easily) I really don't want to get silver all over my outfit if I can avoid it.

Would puffy paint be a better idea? It seems like it would take *forever* to use though. Any suggestions?

Becca Stareyesbeccastareyes on April 7th, 2005 10:10 am (UTC)
You mihght try looking here or here for advice on painting craft foam.
neekabeneekabe on April 7th, 2005 10:11 am (UTC)
Spray paint works well enough on craft foam, it's a different substance that styrofoam ( or insulation foam, both of which have that annoying tendancy to dissolve ^_~ ). You just have to remember it is basically a sponge and will absorb the paint and change the colour slightly unless you 'seal' it first.
All you have to do for that is prime the foam with a couple of layers of watered-down glue before you paint. This'll soak in on the first couple of layers, but after a few create a nice seal ^_^
(Good tutorial on this site in the process tutorials section)
__kat__: ed mentos__kat__ on April 7th, 2005 10:29 am (UTC)
thanks for your help.

I guess that means that I don't have quite enough time to get it done before the club cosplay tonight. *sigh* stupid tests, getting in the way of my fandom! At least I still have my crap-tastic (tm) cardboard and metalic tape arm.
neekabeneekabe on April 7th, 2005 11:24 am (UTC)
You can just do a quick spray, assuming your craft foam isn't blatently a different colour. I did't seal my Kroenen stuff, and it's gold over grey. The non sealed stuff is a slightly darker gold than the detailing (aka 'sealed' bits), but it still looks good (pictures here)
(Anonymous) on April 7th, 2005 12:30 pm (UTC)
Hey, I would recomend going to a hobby store and asking about paint that doesnt melt craft foam. As for me, i would just make one out of sheet metal or steel.
ryuuraigekiryuuraigeki on April 7th, 2005 02:14 pm (UTC)
What's worked best for me has been spray painting the foam enough so that it's grey, then spraying sealant on it, and then applying a final coat of silver acrylic paint. My final automail arm is going to be made of a vinyl/craft foam combo, but this has worked out pretty well for me so far, even though it's only a prototype. (There's probably a zillion different ways to do this, too)
Imagination at it's finest: Spaz!dragontrap on April 7th, 2005 02:56 pm (UTC)
If you have a traget near you, trying looking in the kitchen section for a stainless steel vinyl. It looks like real metal, but it's used to cover cabinets and such.

This is a scan (I have no digicam), but trust me, it looks even better in person:

vicemagevicemage on April 8th, 2005 07:55 pm (UTC)
Hm... if you're using the same kind of craft foam as I did, then don't worry about the spraypaint eating it. That's just something that affects styrofoam/beadboard. (I know far too much about styrofoam >.<) You should use some kind of primer on it though if you're going for a smooth metallic look. I used an undercoat of Testor's primer (largely because I was working with a plastic base and the paint wouldn't adhere to that at all), and then a hammered metal silver spraypaint over the top, because textured paints are slightly plasticky and fill in the holes in the foam fairly well. Even at that I did have a little visible texture but it wasn't bad, and the paint effects I did later hid it pretty well. ^^

Good luck! Automail's fun to make. ^_^