View Full Version : Layering Pink Foam

Front Yard Fright
01-16-2010, 06:14 PM
Anybody have any ideas of how to layer up pink foam to carve it? I've used Liquid Nails in the past, with mixed results. There's a 3M glue I used, but it didn't work as well as I thought.

I was thinking about using "Great Stuff" and use it as a paste in between the layers. Only thing is I'm not sure it will cure due to lack of air.

Any thoughts or suggestions?

Allen H
01-16-2010, 06:24 PM
Great stuff is a short term soultion. It will break away from the foam in about a year, If you are encasing the whole thing in hard coat then that will hold it together after the fact.
I like the foam specific spray adhesive, Both 3M and Demand products make a version of it that works pretty well.
Allen H

01-16-2010, 07:09 PM
I like to use both. For these big horns I layered the foam, gluing it with Liquid Nails. I put a 2x4 with a metal tube down the middle for strength. When the Liquid nails was dry I sprayed Great Stuff in all the cracks and gaps. Once dry I carved the horns with a chain saw and then a wood rasp. You can't see it in these photos but I detailed them with cracks and gouges. Then got the gallon pail of Liquid nails and smeared it all over the entire thing. This sealed it all up like a hard coat. I like it because it is so thick, it covers any cracks that are left and makes a good texture. It will not be as sturdy as a hard coat but quick easy and probably cheaper. A thick coat of black latex paint, then bone colored spray paint and then oil based wood stain in the gouges made these things look like giant logs. These horns have been sitting outside for a few years, Ice storms and all with no damage. You can see the finished horns on top of the giant skull stage in the last photo. They are 3 stories up.

I hope this helps. Good luck.






01-16-2010, 07:12 PM
I'll second spray adhesive for foam

Kewl pix Eric!

Matt Marich
01-17-2010, 07:58 AM
Pl Poly construction adhesive. We use both the caulking variety and the Liquid variety, sold as gorilla glue. Poly's will dry quicker with a light spray of water, you can usually carve in about 4 hours after application. Liquid nails is low on our list after testing, it improves if you squeeze the pieces together, then pull them apart and re-squeezw. This webbing improves the tack. Spray glu will not hold up under wet or high heat conditions. So if your building a waterfall or are in direct sunlight for extended time, you may have problems. Foam actually expands and contracts, its why they use it here in the sun belt where daytime temps reach 120.

01-17-2010, 10:42 AM
I've had some decent results in light to medium-duty applications with a 3M product called Fastbond.
It can be rolled on and is water-based in case you don't like working with a solvent-based product.
A lot of scenic folks even call it "green glue."
The trade-off is that it may not be as aggressive sticky in some situations as the PL and Liquid Nail products that Matt and Eric mentioned. Good luck!

01-17-2010, 11:36 AM
I have also used PL construction adhesive with good results. I got a ton of it one time when Home Depot was moving one of it's stores for 80% off. The only problem was by the time I went to use the product some of it was very old and really thick. I usually get any kind of construction adhesive they have at the store, even the cheap Ace brand works well when Great Stuff is used to reinforce any gaps. I always coat my sculptures with some kind of adhesive when finished because they are out in the weather for years. An outer skin of construction adhesive I have found to be great for weatherproofing foam and making it hold together as well.

These horns have been out in the weather going on 4 years of New England weather. Plywood is in the middle for strength. Skin of Liquid nails and spray paint, detailed with wood stain.


This pumpkin was made in 2003 at the home haunt out of Chicken wire and Great Stuff with a skin of Liquid Nails. I'm still using it to this day.


Here is the Liquid Nails or Ace brand construction adhesive being applied with a rubber glove to a pumpkin made out of mostly Great Stuff. It looks like I mixed the old PL stuff in there as well. One of these days I'll try hard coat but this has been working for me so far. I like it because it is thick, readily available and I can get it on sale a lot of the times at the hardware store down the street from my house in Gallon buckets. Even full price is less than $20.00 for the Ace brand.


Finished with paint.


Matt Marich
01-18-2010, 04:28 PM
And your Jack o' Lanerns are awesome! Aren't you doing a seminar at TW? Not to be missed Folks!!

01-18-2010, 06:21 PM

Yes, I'm doing a seminar at TW. I like to do things as simply and cheaply as I can. Years of doing the home haunt has served me well by forcing me to invent unique money saving techniques with readily available and sometimes free materials. I will show how to build a monster as tall as 34 feet like the first photo or much smaller like the reapers, scarecrows or tree monsters in the other photos.

Let me know what you guy's want to see covered so I don't leave anything out.






damon carson
01-20-2010, 05:25 PM
This is a little off subject but who painted the scene on your gargage wall Eric?

01-20-2010, 05:34 PM
canned up spray foam should work wonders

01-20-2010, 06:04 PM
LOL! I did that painting myself years ago. The lettering was a bitch. I got sick of pulling into my garage to an ugly white wall, the garage faces the street. I still get a lot of compliments on it from people walking past. Sadly the natural rock formation "The old man in the Mountain collapsed in 2003. It's on all the road signs in NH, it was cool.


Back to the subject of foam carving. I plan to make a 22 foot glowing skeleton that will hang from a tree this year. Using the same techniques detailed in the new Hauntworld magazine. Rae Enslin wrote an awesome article describing each and every step. Here are a few of the steps of the making of Mister Ded. The rest will be in Hauntworld with explanations. I'll also go over it in the TW seminar.





01-21-2010, 09:17 AM
I cant imagine runnin a haunt without pl glue.

it is an amazing product.

01-23-2010, 09:12 AM
I use spray foam. just had an idea, has anyone used contact cement? or would it melt the foam? also what is the best hard coating?

Allen H
01-23-2010, 02:54 PM
straight foam will be melted by rubber cement, it also ignites at a lower temperature than the foam (hot wire tool temperature roughly) when its wet. But, pink foam has a plastic film one one side (some brands have it on both sides) and that will protect the foam. Many rubber cements contain tolulene (sp?) which is a solvent and solvents melt foam. as long as the rubber cement is dry it should work OK.
Allen H