Friday, October 12, 2012

Styrofoam Cat

The ferocious cat was my first attempt using Styrofoam.  The material is actually Owens Corning extruded polystyrene foam insulation.  The four by eight sheet of insulation was 2 inches thick.  To provide additional support for the legs and tail, I embed a steel rods within the Styrofoam.  The steel rods are 3/8” diameter and at the cat feet are 1/8” steel plates.  At the steel plates, I welded nuts for 3/8” diameter bolts.  The bolts were used to bolt a wood boards to the cat feet to prevent the cat from blowing over.

The steel rods were embedded into the Styrofoam.  I was able to melt the Styrofoam by heating the steel rods.  To secure the steel rods within the Styrofoam, I used spray insulation foam.  Clamps were used to hold the sheets of Styrofoam together while the glue dried.

The eyes are steel half spheres.  I welded steel rods to the eyes which were embedded into the Styrofoam by heating the steel.  I glued the eyes using Loctite Foamboard Adhesive.

To smooth out the rough sections, I used wood filler.  The wood filler is a non solvent type of wood filler.  The wood filler was easy to smooth out with the Styrofoam using sandpaper.  But it turned out to be a waste of time since the cement coating covered the imperfection without using the wood filler.  

I original started coating the cat using Hot Wire Foam Factory All Purpose Foam Coat.  When I ran out of material, I switch to cement mixture used for setting floor tile.  I also added Quikrete concrete acrylic fortifier to the mixture.  So far it appears to be working okay.  I also tried using tile grout both sanded and unsanded, but it did not work.  

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