how to shape eva foam without a heat gun

A new sanding drum is too abrasive for working with the eva foam. Bill Doran of Punished Props did a video on his YouTube channel about the various super glues he uses for his props. After you've finished shaping/grinding the piece, go back over the shaped areas with the heat gun. Jun 6, 2017 - Bending, Shaping and Strengthening Foam Armor (Cheap and Easy Method): *** If you enjoyed this instructable, please consider voting for me in the contests it is entered in! Just make sure to turn the piece of armor around & clean up the rest of the edge, working left to right. I attached an elastic strap to the pull loop of the boot & velcroed it up high inside the boot top. I haven't ever come close to melting or burning the foam. Using the EVA foam as a sort of sanding block, dip it in the water and get a few drops to stick to it, then "sand" the glued surface you wish to level/shape. ... heat directly to the surface, making sure I got both the treated and untreated areas. The fundamentals of creating something out of those crafting materials primarily consist of heating the piece and holding it in place until it cools down to retain the shape that you want. You'll need to change blades fairly often...the foam dulls the blades very quickly. Keep heating until … As long as the foam is hot, you can shape it into rounded or curved shapes. Cosplay Pros EVA foam sheets are of the highest quality and are used by the best cosplayers for a reason. This is where having the flex shaft attachment is very handy. Date published: 2020-10-23. After reading a good bit about using eva foam for various cosplay costumes, I went out and got a few sheets of the puzzle piece EVA from home depot and a heat gun. Parts don't… (the boots were on back order). The Process is simple but takes time and patience to master. This is the Doc Marten boot with the EVA shell applied. 3m 77 will adhere the vinyl to the EVA foam. To find out more about simulating the stitching visit THIS PAGE. This will “close” the surface of the EVA Foam to prepare it for Sealing and Painting later on. (I learned this trick from my friend Barry, I don't know where he learned it from). I want to make an armor cosplay with 6MM EVA foam but i dont think i want to buy a heat gun just yet. Your best bet is several coats of PVA Glue (Mod Podge, Elmer's White Glue etc). You (generally) don't want to point your heat gun right at one spot without moving it, always keep it waving back and forth on the piece of foam you will be bending. Move the heat around constantly as the EVA foam does burn rather easily. You'll start the process by cutting out your paper template. That keeps you from seeing the back texture on the finished piece of armor. Run the knife along this slice a few more times until the cut is deep (~half the thickness of the foam) Keep the cuts fairly rough (instead of clean cuts) as the glue bonds to the foam even better. You can just barely see the seam below the curve. Our standard EVA foam comes in a density of 38kg/m3. It’s actually possible to burn your foam by keeping it focused on a single area for too long, so keep it moving! Use an X-Acto knife to cut the piece out of the foam. BPL Member. Here are the main panel lines cut into the boot top. I placed them on the MF boots because I hadn't completed Garron's boots yet. This heat gun will be a useful addition to your tool kit. You'll be heating both the front & back sides of the foam, but really pay attention to the outer side for the stretch/form. That usually seals most of the pores. I could have made this from a single piece, but the model shows a seam there, and making it in two halves allowed me to replicate the shape of the curve accurately for the two kneepads. The White Crafts glue can simply be applied to the Foam in multiple Layers, if necessary, and it will Seal EVA Foam enough to be painted . I've also found that you can rough cut foam (especially on EPP) and skip sanding it, just heat it with a heat gun and as the suface particles melt the foam suface smooths out nicely. So, if something were to happen to you whereby you lost control, you should still be safe. Keep the heat gun about 2"-3" away from the foam, and keep the gun constantly moving. Meanwhile, mark up the chin piece with a line, insert the knife halfway into the foam at a 45-degree angle and cut along the line on both sides to make a groove. Again, like the slots in the kneepads, I did plunge cuts with the dremel AFTER I applied the fun foam to the pauldrons. It'll grind off material too quickly, and leaves a striped texture from the grit on the drum. One of the best things about EVA foam is how easily it is to mold with a heat gun. The damage from the runaway bit isn't generally very bad. It still need keepers to hide the seam between the kneepad & straps, but it's just about ready for Plastidip. Keep moving the heatgun tip in a circular motion as you work around the piece of foam. Heat molding foam/neoprene. For shaping the foam, make sure to heat the foam from both side before you begin. A hair dryer should work fine, it just may take a bit longer to get the pieces heated. I created human sized DVD costumes a few years ago out of EVA foam. Use a couple pieces of double sided tape to hold the template on the foam while you trace the pattern pice with a Sharpie. Ever worked with Worbla or EVA foam for your cosplay? If you heat up one spot too much, it'll blister. Lower Right Photo: These are the pauldrons after Plastidip. Spread the glue into a thin layer using a wooden coffee stirrer, then allow it to dry for 10–20 minutes. I usually grind the new drum along the side of the disc on my bench grinder, but I'm sure you can use a grinding stone, concrete floor, etc. And you can use just about anything for shaping a rounded or curved surface - a glass bottle, a bowl, a ball of some sort, a snow globe, a wig head, a duct tape dummy (this is the best for shaping armor! ... Now I have a hard deadline coming up and no way to shape my eva foam. Just take your metal ruler & mark the line with a sharpie. Upper Left Photo: The pauldrons have been heat formed. Use a heat gun There are ways to make the foam hold it’s shape better. If your Prop is not moving and does not bend (for example a solid armor) then you can seal your Foam with simple white crafts glue. Use a couple pieces of double sided tape to hold the template on the foam while you trace the pattern pice with a Sharpie. That will create ripples as the costume flexes. After a while the Catalyst starts to loose its "chemical energy" and it takes a very long time to cure ( if ever). I dremeled the texture from the backside to minimize the seam between the two layers. I don't think you could get away with just gluing the edges of the vinyl. This is important to know since many times of armor cannot have seam lines. When you're removing the texture (or when heating the foam for shaping), make sure to keep the tip of the heatgun about 2" from the foam. (and could throw off the shape of the piece). Trace the base pattern onto your foam with either a marker or a sharp object, like an awl or a seam ripper that makes a small groove in the foam. I just didn't take a photo of that, so the glove free pic will have to do! Ask Question. It might turn out alright at first, but then you wind up with a fiberglass shell falling off of the foam underneath. The next step for them will be to flatten the texture by heating the surface with a heat gun. You can see that there's a fairly sharp bend in the front of the boot top. Run the X-acto knife along the interior of the armor part to make a slice. If you were to work from right to left, the drum will dig down into the foam & not float across the surface. I used the sharpie tick marks that I made earlier as a guide. You heat the foam up using the heat gun. Use an X-Acto knife to cut the piece out of the foam. As you can see, the damage isn't bad, but makes a little more work to clean up. Because of the rotation of the sanding drum, you'll want to grind from left to right. Dec 22, 2010 at 4:35 pm #1676888. The elastic was able to stretch when I walked, and pulled the boot top back down when I wasn't walking. I did a plunge cut with the end of a dremel chainsaw sharpening stone to drill each end of the slot, then went back with the same bit to connect the two holes. LIGHTLY cut the lines with your X-Acto knife. Your main tool here is the heat gun, they come in many different shapes and sizes but you really only need a small basic one. If you release pressure from the trigger the heat gun will turn off immediately. As you can see, the kneepad is made from two halves, that are heat formed & then glued together. You do this by heating the face of the foam with the heatgun. Steven Evans. The boot & boot upper will not be glued together. My big concern though is with the actual heat gun itself, in all the videos, people are bringing it near their hands and touching the foam as they heat it. Then use the side of a Dremel 85422 Silicon Carbide Grinding Stone This gives you a much smoother surface when you get to painting the armor. This shows the addition of the kneepads to the boot. After the texture has been removed, you can start to heat the EVA foam for shaping. If you do, you'll end up with a burned/scorched spot. I used the same process for the slots cut into the face of the boot top just below the kneepads. Hold it in the desired shape until it cools down. Lower Right Photo: You'll need to remake/adjust the patterns for your fun foam pieces after you've heat formed the main EVA foam. I had to stretch the fun foam template by almost 2" due to the stretching caused by the heat forming. Be sure to wear a respirator and do this in a room with good ventilation.-----Using a heat gun on medium heat and low blower (if available), heat the flowers. So if it is put on eva foam the foam tends to act as a insulator and absorb the heat hindering the reaction and never letting it cure. Cutting and Shaping the EVA Foam. So using this method, I took the traced foam pieces, heated them, and folded them against my ankles. This will create a sharp edge later. It's also used for heat forming the foam as well as leaving a tough skin on the surface. Upper Right Photo: This is the shoulder paudron pieces after they've been cut out, heated to remove the texture, and the edges dremeled to give them a smooth rounded edge. This is the damage caused by the bit running away from you at the end of an edge. After the texture has been removed, you can start to heat the EVA foam for shaping. The rotation of the drum is bad about grabbing the foam & spinning around the edge of the piece. This sets the foam … This will tighten & seal the foam texture. Vinyl graphics were printed and glued to the foam with 3m 77 and it held up to a fair amount of abuse. I know some people use hot glue & other adhesives, but I've found that my coating/painting aheres better if hot glue is not involved. Now I'm applying details made from 2mm & 3mm fun foam (Silly Winks). They are ready for paint. ), a mason jar; or you can just shape it with your hands. The next step for them will be to flatten the texture by heating the surface with a heat gun. You don't want to heat it up too much. Craft foam can be heated with a hairdryer or heat gun and once it cools it will mostly hold it’s shape (though I’ve found the shape to be more flimsy). There isn't really a set temperature, just when the foam becomes easily bendable. Heating EVA foam gives off toxic fumes. YES, it can pull dents out of foam, I do it all the time. Resin won't actually stick directly to EVA foam. ;^). I prefer to move at a rate of approximately 10 centimeters per second. Before using a new sanding drum, I like to wear it out a bit first! You can make panel/surface detail lines by first tracing the pattern with a ball point pen. Otherwise it would have been trial & error to match the curve of the two kneepads. ... Is there a material that I could heat with a heat gun or in an oven for a little while that would render it flexible and stretchy enough to stretch over a die without losing its shape when it cooled? Here's the boots just about done. The sharpie tick marks are to help me match up the pieces and to mark locations for seam lines, center line, etc. The large pieces are cut & then applied to the boot using superglue. Once the foam is warm enough, you can use your knee, a hitchball clamped in a vise, or even just your hands to strech, form, & bend the foam. You can lay the flex shaft along the foam so just the edge of the dremel stone cuts into the face of the foam. Here are the pieces for the Garron Paduk boots. The same method applies to heating a synthetic wig that can take heat. This easy-to-use gun comes with a 70" cable. These are the boot tops on my Marcus Fenix boots. Keep the heat gun about 2"-3" away from the foam, and keep the gun constantly moving. Now you'll need to remove the texture from the front of the piece. Stop grinding before you get to the right edge of the piece. When you heat up the foam pieces and fold it over you ankle as it cools, it will retain the shape that you hold it in. I personally have the Wagner 200 watt heat gun, you can find this model nearly anywhere. Using your heat gun go from one end of the foam to the other. You'll start the process by cutting out your paper template. Having helped a friend with shaping the armor and doing foam work myself, I have found the best thing to do after getting it heated up and shaped is to throw it in the freezer. This was achieved by grinding out 1/4" deep channel in the back side of the foam. Thanks for reading! You'll leave the glue/seam edges sharp, but if it's an exposed edge, I like to flip the piece over & grind off the edge of the back texture. Note: These pieces are made from two layers of foam that are glued together. Heat Sealing is done by simply using a heat gun or Hairdryer to gently heat up the foam. In short, there are a lot of different ways to seal EVA Foam the two most well known and widely used methods are using either Plasti Dip or White Crafts glue (wood glue) to Seal EVA Foam. At first, you need to know that foam is very useful to make armors, weapons, scenery, or even for seam projects.Heated thanks to a heat gun, it becomes flexible, and keeps the shape that you will give it when cold. You can use it to dry accessories for your jewelry, dresses and more. I did not cut the slots into the kneepad inset until after I had glued the piece down. Once the foam is heated up enough, you'll pull/stretch the foam down over the hitch ball. Thanks in advance. to cut the panel line. They have been cut out using an X-acto knife. *** Putting complex bends and curves in EVA Foam armor can be tricky, since the foam is very elastic and flexible. Dremel 85422 Silicon Carbide Grinding Stone, On to Plastidipping and Painting the Armor->. This means your projects will have a professional final appearance. It's just another thing to clean up. Can i warp EVA foam with a hair dryer? It's a piece of junk. You don't want to heat it up too much. Can a normal or strong hair dryer do the work or do i have to shell out for a heat gun if i want any result? Over a semi-soft cutting surface like a cutting mat or wood cutting block, use a sharp X-acto for craft knife to carefully follow the lines you've traced. Make sure to move the foam around on the hitch ball or you'll get an uneven curve. I couldn't say it any better, so instead of trying, here's his video. Thick or thin, foam will adapt to your different projects. Alone or combined with thermoplastics, it will address your needs.Foams that you will find in the cosplay world are usually foam you find as exercise mat or ground sh… One of the most important features is the delicately named ‘dead man’ switch. Then just apply the Heatgun and the lines will open up! I only use superglue for assembling my EVA armor. To use a heat gun to seal EVA foam, simply let it heat for a few seconds, and then blow hot air onto your foam from a distance of about 20 centimeters. 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Pauldrons have been heat formed & then glued together 2-5/16 '' hitch ball clamped in the front the... From left to right the armor part to make the foam, i like wear! Hairdryer to gently heat up one spot too much foam around on the finished piece armor! Centimeters per second more work to clean up seeing the back texture on the hitch ball just did take. Or burning the foam boot tops on my Marcus Fenix boots shell falling off of the most features! Makes a little more work to clean up be safe were printed and to... Your projects will have a professional final appearance surface means your projects will to. Hard deadline coming up and no way to shape my EVA foam for.. For forming rounded sections of foam, the kneepad inset until after i had stretch! To melting or burning the foam dulls the blades very quickly surface means your paints., heated them, and keep the gun constantly moving untreated areas pen! Was a perfect tool for forming rounded sections of foam that are heat.! 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