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Old 03-10-2008, 09:59 PM
S. Ekwurtzel S. Ekwurtzel is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2008
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Archival Foams? (Pourable/ Castable)

Hello All,

I am currently working on an edition to be cast in foam. The prototype is the size of a small dog. I have worked with 2 part polyurethane foam from PolyTek but have been disappointed with yellowing, shrinkage, and stiffening that seems to occur only months after casting. I have done some tests with latex foam products but have found the process tedious and the outcome unpredictable.. I have also heard that latex foam will rot.
Silicone foams are an expensive option that I have not yet explored.
It is essential for the concept and character of the piece that the foam be flexible, soft, and able to visibly translate vibration as there is an oscillator within the body of the piece which makes it shiver violently.
I have had a few conversations with a conservator who specializes in polyurethanes. She recommends polyethelyne foam, but I have not been able to find a pourable polyethelyne.

Any ideas for a foam that will retain it's characteristics for a few years?

Thank You so much.

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Old 04-12-2008, 12:24 AM
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obseq obseq is offline
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 1,700
Re: Archival Foams? (Pourable/ Castable)

Hi, Sam,

Welcome! Your needs are quite specific, and after briefly looking through the archives here, I did not see anything regarding polyethelyne. I would suspect that a company like Smooth-On may have an answer to your technical problem, but beyond that, try to find an industrial plastics company in your area for more information on this material, (or other possibilities).

Best of luck! Keep us posted with your progress!
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Old 04-12-2008, 11:08 PM
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realsculpt realsculpt is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 131
Re: Archival Foams? (Pourable/ Castable)

yeah smoothon is a good bet, it sounds like she ment polyurethane foam, smooth and polytek are comparable, foam latex will rot ( I did alot of movie fx and taught a foamlatex class) but so do polyfoams after a few years. You may want to try silicone skin backed with polyfoam. check out BJB enterprises, Burman industries, and FX warehouse. they may havesome options for you. latex skins will get dry in about a year or 2, polyfoam wont last more than 2 years unless skinned, you may want to also try gel filled silicones.
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