Dragon faux taxidermy busts -sculpey on foam

Discussion in 'General Modeling' started by fallimar, Jul 3, 2015.

  1. fallimar

    fallimar Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Hey all, I'm doing some fun pieces that involve using super sculpey (the living doll kind for extra strength) and I'm very unsure of how to cure it. I'm laying it over a taxidermy blank, which is a rigid polyfoam cast backed with a wood plate.
    I've used sculpey for all sorts of things before but never over anything other than aluminium foil which I know is fine in the oven. I doubt I'll be able to bake this sculpt when it's on the armature and I'm looking into other methods for curing the sculpey. I do have a heat gun, I've heard you can sort of cure sculpts with them if you use it on low and make sure you heat the stuff as evenly as possible, but that kinda worries me as I don't like the idea of half-cured bits and stuff causing it to crack.

    Anyone know if wood and polyfoam could survive an oven trip, if it'll kill me (or you know, burn or melt or turn into a toxic goo monster) or whatever?
    If not, any alternative methods I could try with my limited equipment would be really cool to know.

    Thanks!
     
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2015
  2. zorg

    zorg Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Re: Curing super sculpey over a foam base?

    Ive done the heat gun method and found it doesnt give good redults.

    As for oven....

    Maybe you could increase the temp gradually over an extended period. Setting the sculpey slowly. It would hold its shape. The foam could melt but hopefully the outer shape would stay.

    Not saying it would work but that what I would try.
     
  3. fallimar

    fallimar Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Re: Curing super sculpey over a foam base?

    Yeah, I figured the oven might be the only way. No idea how it'll work with stuff like the eyes though, and there's no real way I can put the eye in after the eyelid for instance. Very annoying. I might be able to do a test with my heat gun on a small area maybe, see if I can wangle a way to making it work nicely.
     
  4. rbeach84

    rbeach84 Sr Member

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    Re: Curing super sculpey over a foam base?

    What temp does the Sculpey 'bake' at? Should be able to determine what temp the foam can take before it has problems... if the temp is too low the epoxy may not set at all.
    R/ Robert
     
  5. mash3d

    mash3d Active Member

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    Re: Curing super sculpey over a foam base?

    Sculpey cures at 250 degrees Fahrenheit (121 C) per 1/2 inch thickness (12mm)for 20 minutes.
    So foam and an oven may get you visit from the local neighborhood fire department.
    Not to mention the really foul smell the foam will give off.

    A better alternative is Aves Apoxie sclupt or Magic Sculpt.
    Same thing but they air dry over night and will be hard as a rock the next day.
    http://blog.kitkraft.com/working-with-magic-sculpt/
    www.avesstudio.com/apoxie/apoxie-sculpt
    http://www.magicsculp.com/
    They will both stick fairly well but you may need to rough up the surface of the foam to give the clay more surface to bite into.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 9, 2018
  6. fallimar

    fallimar Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Re: Curing super sculpey over a foam base?

    Annoyingly enough I've got apoxie sculpt but I absolutely hate it for sculpting. Happy to use it for basing out forms but for detail I can't get it to do anything but slump and suck.
    I did look up some foam MSDS and some are fine to 300F or so, but yeah - no knowing if this one is until I try, and in any case the resin eyes wouldn't be ok. I'm pretty darn stuck at the moment, might just have to rip all the sculpt off and try maybe covering the whole thing, doing a buildup of clay so each cure is only wafer thin and can be done with the heat gun. Can't really see it working any other way. No idea what to do about the eyes though, maybe just cover then with foil and hope!

    For the next one though, anyone aware of a heat-resistant resin or something I could use? I'm carving down the taxidermy blanks anyway so if I can seal the one I've done and cast it in something less ridiculous it'd be much easier to bake properly.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 9, 2018
  7. mash3d

    mash3d Active Member

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    Re: Curing super sculpey over a foam base?

    Sorry I don't know anything about heat-resistant resin. A friend of mine who is a scluptor uses apoxie sculpt.
    Two tricks he told me were to mix it, apply it, then wait 20-30 minutes before trying to put in the detials.
    Also instead of mixing it 1 to 1, Mix it with a littler more of the hardner to resin.
    Maybe 2 to 1, or 3 to 1. It will set up faster that way.
     
  8. MonsieurTox

    MonsieurTox Master Member

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    Re: Curing super sculpey over a foam base?

    Why not use apoxy sculpt to get your basic shape over the foam, let it cured overnight then do the detail work with super sculpey and put it in the oven ? The foam may melt but the apoxie sculpt would act as a sealed container. And if you're doing only details with the super sculpey it would bake in less than 20 min. Never worked with any of this stuff, this is just an idea but maybe you should run a test with something small first.
     
  9. division 6

    division 6 Master Member

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    Re: Curing super sculpey over a foam base?

    Make your core out of aluminum foil then skin it with the Aves, then use the Sculpy.
    Or skip the Aves and just put the Sculpy directly over the foil.
     
  10. fallimar

    fallimar Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Re: Curing super sculpey over a foam base?

    Yeah, I think if my tests don't work out this is what I'll have to do. Need more apoxie sculpt though, hard to get here in OZ :|

    I've done that in the past but the aim here is to make it work with the foam base. Thing is, I've seen it done so I know it -can- be done, I'm really trying to figure out how!
     
  11. Sym-Cha

    Sym-Cha Master Member

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    Re: Curing super sculpey over a foam base?

    I've used magic sculpt to upgrade my Rancor ... indeed you need to let it rest 15 minutes after kneeding the resin and hardener together before sculpting ... also build your sculpt up in small batches, not all at once you'll run out of time it hardens before your sculpt is done, however once fully cured you can detail it even further with sculpting tools or in my case from the dentist's and approach your work as if it were made in marble instead of trying to sculpt it like clay while the magic sculpt is still soft and the best part is you can keep adding more magic sculpt, on thus making smaller and smaller details visible ... here's the thread with pictures of the Rancor upgrade : http://www.therpf.com/showthread.php?t=187886 ... it's my first attempt workinh with the stuff :)

    Chaim
     
    Last edited: Jul 6, 2015
  12. Sean

    Sean Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Re: Curing super sculpey over a foam base?

    Sorry to jump in here. just had a couple of questions please. how brittle is magic sculpt? and is there any deference from epoxy sculpt? I wish bondo made a clay that would set In an hour or so. about to try some sculpting and i have no clue what medium to choose...
     
  13. Sym-Cha

    Sym-Cha Master Member

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    Re: Curing super sculpey over a foam base?

    Magic Sculpt gets very hard and tough like any epoxy I suppose ... it can withstand quite a lot and is not brittle at all once cured ... it takes about 2 hours before you can't sculpt any further since it's become fully hard ... just start working with small batches and work in rough shapes first before trying to do all the details ... here's a Witch I'm working on when I had some magic sculpt leftover from the Rancor build and I did not want to let it cure without any good use :

    [​IMG]

    I'm getting the feel for this stuff ... and what I love the most is that I can add more details on after curing ... so I don't squish and destroy any subtle details as would happen with Super Sculpy still being 'wet'. And after curing you can carve, sand, file, drill, scrape, cut or even saw any excess material off to create the shape you need.

    Just get some small sample cups from magicsculpt.co.uk to try it out yourself :)

    Chaim
     
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  14. Sean

    Sean Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Re: Curing super sculpey over a foam base?


    Thanks man. I think that's exactly what I'm looking for.:thumbsup and your sculpting skills rock!
     
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  15. fallimar

    fallimar Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Re: Curing super sculpey over a foam base?

    Maybe I'll give it a go if it's not too pricey then. I can never seem to hit the right detail window with apoxie sculpt, always seems so soft and... sort of elastic? Flowy? so it doesn't stay where I put it. If magic sculpt is any different I'll have a go. If it's just my timing being off I'll give the apoxie another go, but I can never seem to be where I need to be when it's time to do anything with it. Inspiration strikes and you want to be able to sculpt away, you know?
     
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  16. Sym-Cha

    Sym-Cha Master Member

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    Re: Curing super sculpey over a foam base?

    Magic sculpt is a 2 part epoxy which you need to mix together thoroughly before use ... I suppose it's the same with Aves apoxy sculpt ... so I don't understand why it should be flowy or elastic unless ... do you use equal parts hardener and resin? Still as I said before working with magic sculpt differs quite a lot from working with super sculpey ... also I read that super sculpey is now also available in a 'magic sculpt-like' epoxy ... which hardens without the use of an oven ... check it out :)

    Chaim
     
    Last edited: Jul 7, 2015
  17. fallimar

    fallimar Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Re: Curing super sculpey over a foam base?

    Hm! Well, I've ordered some magic sculpt to see what it's like. I have no idea why I'm not having luck with the apoxie sculpt, but yeah, it just doesn't hold detail! I use equal parts, knead together until they're uniform in colour and then I try to sculpt with it and it slowly slumps like it's melting. I'll try magic sculpt and definitely check out that sculpey product, thanks! :D
     
  18. Sym-Cha

    Sym-Cha Master Member

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    Re: Curing super sculpey over a foam base?

    Perhaps the temperature in the room might affect the working process? But it should only shorten the time you can work with it ... when starting with magic sculpt make a small batch the size of a marble to experiment ... and after kneading put it away for 15 minutes or so before starting the sculpting process ... also start to build up your figure roughly ... don't try to detail everything right away ... when it has cured you can still fine tune small details with other tools or by adding on smaller bits of magic sculpt ... please, do try and find some tutorials on youtube to give you an idea how to work with this medium while you wait for arrival :)

    Chaim
     
  19. fallimar

    fallimar Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Re: Curing super sculpey over a foam base?

    Hm. I got some magic sculpt, it's certainly better than apoxie sculpt and doesn't have the slumping issue but it isn't as nice to work with as sculpey. It's also far more expensive and smells like sweaty feet :p
    I'll use it for one of the dragons I'm making, see if I can do one each of sculpey and epoxy sculpting mediums and see if I can see a measurable difference in durability and detail.
     
  20. Sym-Cha

    Sym-Cha Master Member

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    Re: Curing super sculpey over a foam base?

    It's not Sculpey ... I experienced myself you have to use this magic sculpt with a new approach ... try and find some tutorials online ... you have to think like a sculpter not a clayer for lack of a better word . . . make a rough outline of the figure . . . let it cure then add more details ... let it cure ... perhaps file or sand excess material away and add more where needed ... forget your sculpey clay techniques ... some won't apply to this 'new' medium :)

    By the way ... I used lots of aluminum foil inside the body of my witch as well as armed wiring for the pose that way you only have to use magic sculpt on a small layer on the outside and save you some money once cured . . . remember make a small batch of kneaded magic sculpt at the time . . . once done you make another batch ;)

    Chaim
     
    Last edited: Jul 13, 2015
  21. fallimar

    fallimar Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Re: Curing super sculpey over a foam base?

    Well!
    Looks like the foam holds up just fine in the oven, for anyone who wants to know. I bought two small blanks as testers and I shaved off the shoulder area to get them to be the shape I need. Last one I threw out the foam scraps, this time I put a small one in the oven (so if anything went wrong there'd be very small scale death gas or house burning) at 110C, left it in for half an hour and absolutely nothing happened to it. It didn't even get warm - turns out the stuff's probably the kind you can use for insulation.

    So! For future reference, Van *'s taxidermy blanks, at least the small ones I have, are heat resistant enough to bake.
    I wouldn't bake the eyes of course (not putting those in any oven!) so I'll be making the eyelids from magic sculpt along with any other parts that can't bake for whatever reason.

    So yay, problem solved :)
     
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  22. Sym-Cha

    Sym-Cha Master Member

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    Re: Curing super sculpey over a foam base?

    Congratulations! So now I'm very curious to see . . .what it is you wanna create :)

    Chaim
     
  23. fallimar

    fallimar Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Re: Curing super sculpey over a foam base?

    I'll put up some pics when it looks less like a mess and more like what I'm making ;)
     
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  24. fallimar

    fallimar Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Here we go, it's really rough and I've only done work on the neck obviously, but getting the face roughed in too. I'll remove the eyes for baking and finish them with magic sculpt after the whole piece is solid.
    DragonBustWIP1.jpg
     
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  25. Sym-Cha

    Sym-Cha Master Member

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    So is this made with white Sculpey Clay or Magic Sculpt now?

    Oh, . . . I see you said 'bake' so this must be Sculpey then :wacko

    Chaim
     
  26. fallimar

    fallimar Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Yeah, I'm using some magic sculpt on the other one but I don't have as much practice with it so it's not great! This one will be sculpey, but the eyelids need to be magic sculpt as I can't bake the resin eyes. The clay is living doll super sculpey, I only have the standard grey magic sculpt.
     
  27. Captain Doom

    Captain Doom New Member

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    This may not be helpful at this point, but I have had success curing small sculpy parts with boiling water. I haven't tried it on anything large but sometimes you just don't want to stink up the kitchen for a small piece.
     
  28. fallimar

    fallimar Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    I love how many different ways you can cure the stuff! I expect boiling water would work great for small, thin pieces, I hear folks use it for curing modded action figures and models as it's less likely to warp the plastic. I can't imagine it'd be great to actually -boil- a piece though, the bumping on the bottom of the pot would misshape the piece if it weren't secured somehow. Anyway, food for thought!
    I've never had an issue with smell from sculpey though, even larger pieces! weird!
     
  29. fallimar

    fallimar Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Haha! I hate how you can work on something like this for hours and hours and it looks like you've done nothing at all! Finished off the belly/chin scutes, refined the jaw shape and fixed some symmetry flubs. Still trying to figure out how I want to bulk out the head and add cheek spines or webbing, and have to sculpt the horns. Everything else is just playing. This is fun but painstaking!

    DragonbustWIP1.jpg DragonbustWIP2.jpg DragonbustWIP3.jpg
     
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  30. rbeach84

    rbeach84 Sr Member

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    That is coming along nicely!
    R/ Robert
     
  31. Gimpdiggity

    Gimpdiggity Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    That's amazing!!!

    I'd love to have something like that for my wall.

    I can't wait to see the finished project!
     
  32. fallimar

    fallimar Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Bit more...

    The eyelid is just for my own reference, got to take the eye off before the thing bakes. Makes it look so much less derpy though!
    Now more scales scales scales scales etc.

    DragonWIP4.jpg

    Also thanks :D
     
  33. Sym-Cha

    Sym-Cha Master Member

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    That's a great improvement adding the eye lids for testing ... also don't forget to put some a-symmetrical positioned warts and pimpels in different sizes ... as well as battle scratches and scars on those scales :)

    Chaim
     
  34. fallimar

    fallimar Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Naww, this one's the pretty one! I have plans to make the other one a toothy, heavy jawed brute of a thing though, so that one can have the craggy bits. This one's clean :)
     
  35. Rats

    Rats Sr Member

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    Re: Curing super sculpey over a foam base?

    Kirkside Products in Osborne Park sell Apoxie.

    Love the dragon BTW
     
  36. fallimar

    fallimar Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Re: Curing super sculpey over a foam base?

    Thanks :)

    Yeah, I go to kirkside when I can but they tend to have small quantities of stuff. I get my stuff in bulk off the internet usually, it's hard to get out to Osborne park a lot of the time!
     
  37. fallimar

    fallimar Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Quick idea rough of the second dragon - plate-like scales rather than the fine ones on the first sculpt, craggier, grumpier and more brutish. This one will have scarring, probably broken, stubby horns and a dewlap under his chin. Should be a fun contrast :D

    Dragon2IdeaRough.jpg
     
  38. Sym-Cha

    Sym-Cha Master Member

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    Now that's a mean looking dragon ... love the sketch :)

    Chaim
     

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