Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Spray Foam Rock Formations

  Apparently, I like to make things out of wire.  I say apparently because I didn't quite realize this until this evening.  A few months ago, when we started this play, someone suggested we make rocks out of spray foam, and I said, "Sure, cool!"

So first I designed a two-step rock.  We started with two oddly shaped pieces of plywood, separated by 2x4s.  We put a third, smaller piece of plywood on the top for a second step.  Here's a picture I previously posted...

 Next, we stapled on some heavy duty wire to give it some sturdy but rounded shape, and over that I attached some aluminum screening.

See my foot in the lower left?  I was standing on the table for some good staple-gun leverage.

 I kept the top of each level clean so that when the kids step on it in their stocking-feet, they don't get boo-boos.  Sorry about the blurry photo - I didn't check it for clarity till the moment had passed...

It's going to get completely coated with spray foam insulation - here's how it looks after it dries, but before it's painted. Lumpy looking, but it dries nice and hard, but don't get it on your hands or your clothes - it's like epoxy.  As a matter of fact, maybe it IS epoxy.

In the picture above, there is a flat, one level rock sitting on top of my two level rock.  

This evening we also formed a round rock out of a box from a former play...

... and we turned an old entertainment center into Ariel's Grotto.

 We added a piece of luan across the back (I'm thinking something thicker may have been better - easier to staple into), and I added a couple of rocky outcroppings with screening.

Then we wrapped the edges with screening to round them out.   

In the play, Kin Triton is going to flip this around and show the back after he "destroys" the grotto.

When we get a dry day, we're going to drag the stuff outside and cover it all in spray foam insulation.  The stuff shown above was the canned stuff, but it took FOREVER to get that as shown.  It sprays out of a tiny tube that's smaller than a drinking straw.  We decided to spring for the two large "professional" cans.  They mix together, epoxy style as you're spraying them, I believe.  We're doing it all at once because once you open the cans, you only have a few days before whatever remains in the cans hardens up into an unusable mass.   I'll post again after we spray it, which is scheduled for Thursday or Friday.  

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