It is manufactured in 3, 5 and 10mm thicknesses, though often only the 5mm is stocked in shops. If .. for whatever reasons of your own .. you prefer to use UHU, you must be able to control it! Take a few wooden dowels or pieces of wood in the size curve you need, and fit the Styrofoam piece around them. But, nearer to home perhaps, some regular foamboards are made with a polyurethane core rather than polystyrene and the paper coverings are easy to peel off cleanly to use the smooth foam as a constructional or shaping material. Knowing just how to cut foam board and still have the edges look nice can be a tricky thing. College shops in the UK tend to stock inexpensive thin white card from the art supply firm Seawhite in 200, 300 or 600gsm weights. Kapa-line remains straight even under humidity (other foamboards are often quickly warped) and it has the added advantage that the paper layers can be carefully peeled off, either to facilitate bending into curves or to use the foam on its own as a material. Strong PVA glue (always better to use the ‘wood glue’ type rather than the economy-style ‘school’ glue) will bond foam-to-card well but not instantly, so joints often have to be temporarily taped together with masking tape while setting. It helps even more if the height indications included on the drawn ground-plan are kept visible .. another good reason for using the actual ground-plan, pasted to the baseboard. Production offices are often like this, and certainly studios or locations with sets in progress. You can also use a craft knife by scoring a line with the tip of the blade. This won’t eliminate all the colour, but most of it, and more importantly it will seal the surface so that once the primer is dry after a few hours, more water-based whitener such as white acrylic or gesso can be applied without the structures warping. There should always be at least one scale figure included, simply as a familiar indication of scale. IIRC, it cut at a rate of about 4"-5" per minute. The ‘white card model’ of the present context is, in many ways, anything but rough and inexact and most often, due to its usual place in the chronology of design steps, it is no longer exploratory. As a general rule when cutting anything by hand with a knife it is always better to take things carefully and slowly. This treatment also gives it a slightly waxy composition, making it easier to cut and ensuring a very sharp edge. There it melts the plastic surfaces and effectively fuses the two pieces The material needs to be cut half-way through in repeated parallel lines (as little as 2mm apart for a tight curve), making it more flexible. Regular acrylic or acrylic gesso are best to use for painting it white, since spray paints will dissolve the surface. When the ceiling becomes a feature of the design it should definitely be included, but again detachable. Score the outline with a small craft knife. It may also help to say that the scalpel blade is ‘meant to’ bend a little with the pressure of being pushed against the ruler and that if it doesn’t its always liable to wander. It may offer no information on colour, little on texture and materials, but all the most essential information on space, structure, movable elements and their practical implications. Foam board is one of the most popular types of signage that you’ve probably seen in your local supermarket or in malls but probably never knew the name.  Most of the softer forms, such as the standard Daler-Rowney mountboard sold in A1 size sheets are fine for perhaps most of the work ..walls or simple cut-outs.. but unsuitable for more delicate structures such as railings for example, because they are too thick in scale and will break apart if cut too thin. Interesting process for easily getting a beautifully curved shield. I’ve come to the conclusion that the problem lies in not properly ‘feeling’ the straight edge of the ruler enough to stick with it. The fuzzy burr of paper which develops along both sides can be removed by carefully ‘scuffing’ with the sanding block at a 45degree angle. Extra care needs to be taken while working with foamboard not to press down too firmly while steadying the sheet as finger-dents are very easy to get. But the elevations (meaning the vertical faces of walls, structures etc.) FOAMULAR 150 1 in. Using a solvent glue such as UHU may be quicker, but it dissolves the foam in the standard brands so clean or effective gluing is not always guaranteed. It is important to make the distinction right now between the ‘white card model’ meant in this case and the other case .. the exploratory, often rough and inexact, sometimes coloured, ‘sketch’ model which is often referred to by the same name, especially in the theatre. I’m going to answer all of the questions I had when I started researching so I hope this isn’t a beat down of info. with my own little twists to it. As I explained earlier, the effect should be monotone, rather than particularly white. Here is another curved foam board project. Foam board is a sturdy and lightweight material that is easy to cut with a sharp craft knife or with a picture framing mat cutter. One exception to the ‘5cm rule’ may be the floor area .. and this calls for the personal judgement of the designer/maker. .. in how one renders one’s own technical drawings (better still if it actually enhances rather than detracts from the communicative clarity of them!) It is essential, if you want to keep in scale, to have recourse to something thinner than mountboard but still strong enough to stand up on its own if need be. needs to be represented in 3D whereas anything which can be ignored from the point of view of space (such as shallow decoration or panelling, light curtains etc.) You will be able to tell if a knife is genuinely sharp or not when it comes to foam board because a sharp knife can slice through the whole thing in one smooth cut. This has to be lightly applied to both sides, left for a few minutes and then pressed together (UHU can sometimes be used as a contact adhesive in the same way). Cutting To make the boards even more pliable, we soaked them in hot water in a 10-ft. aluminum gutter. Otherwise, the model can become chequered with distracting areas of black. Acetate cuts easily with a scalpel but if need be thicker sheets can be scored and snapped cleanly. In addition it tells the cinematographer, and camera, sound or lighting crews, how much space there will be for equipment and whether any obstacles such as pillars, steps or levels need to be planned for. These boards must be soaked in water to remove the paper coating, and are typically low quality. This white card model is pivotal in giving the countless people involved a clear and immediate understanding of how each part is meant to go together. 4. I hold the sheet firmly with a large metal rule and then take off the cardboard avoiding any possibility of the foam being torn away. Whereas PU foam is not affected by solvents and can be glued quite effectively with UHU, contact adhesives or even superglue, styrofoam and polystyrene require special ‘foam friendly’ glues such as ‘UHU Por’ or solvent free (I recently found that Gorilla Glue will also work very well since it is polyurethane). Especially if two larger pieces are being laminated (i.e. A good online source for ordering/delivery is Bay Plastics www.plasticstockist.com (the 1-2mm white foamed Pvc included in the online catalogue is the cheaper ‘Palfoam’ rather than Palight). a ‘larger’ model is one that is made to a larger scale even if it ends up a physically smaller portion of the whole. The best way to keep foamcore from curling is to frame it, but if this is not practical, there are a couple of alternative methods. Don't worry too much about fraying the edge but just try to create a clean cut around the edge making sure to do 1 inch of excess cloth. On the other hand the white card model works for a living .. it gets around, it’s handled and it gets worn at the edges .. so there’s no sense in getting too precious about it. cleaner cut is almost always achieved by starting carefully with a very light guiding cut and following through a few times, increasing the pressure gradually. Another form of glue which styrofoam seems to accept is spraymount, especially effective if sprayed lightly on both surfaces like a contact adhesive. Coating any foam edges first with slightly diluted PVA will solve this and when dry, UHU or sprays can be used on these edges, but it is rather laborious to go to this trouble. glued surface-to-surface) only spots of glue are needed to hold them firmly in place otherwise the water-based glue will cause warping if spread on too liberally. Most often the master groundplan is used, spraymounted to the baseboard. How to Cut Foam Core Board- The Right Way January 29, 2015 by Breanna Carlile Making your craft project look crisp and clean can be a difficult task when using foam core board, but it doesn’t have to be when you know what you’re doing. Brush on a liberal amount of water. I put a piece of duct tape on the back of the cut to reinforce it. Showmanship may not be strictly necessary in practical terms .. but it can inspire!  Even this kind of model can be stylish as well as functional and, dependant on individual taste, ability and.. most importantly.. time, it can be embellished with graphic detail, structural finesse or effects designed to ‘sell’ the visual concept. Styrofoam is very finely-celled so it sands very well without crumbling .. using a sanding block it’s possible to get smooth, sharp-edged shapes fairly easily. You should also use an extra-long blade for this. It is understandable because making them can be tedious, but ‘sandwiching’ foamboard or card to form the correct ‘riser’ (meaning the height of a step) and then simply layering these is one way of making construction much easier. All can be cut on a band saw, but failing this the best way to ensure a straight cut right through is (as with thick foamboard) to start cutting half way through on one side, take the line round and complete from the other side. Our window was 35″ wide. It is more solid in the center, which is why it is sometimes referred to as rigid foam insulation. One tip is that if you want UHU to stick firmly more immediately .. almost as superglue does .. you have to apply the glue and position the piece down as you normally would, pressing firmly, but then lift it up again just a few millimetres. The material may also be familiar from exercise or camping mats. Although very soft it can be cut quite cleanly with a sharp scalpel though it can’t be sanded. If you’re lucky, slight changes in level are easy to achieve just by layering different thicknesses of card on top of the baseboard. There is another form of ‘white card model’ often used in film which I’d call ‘virtual’ or imaginary .. where a building, structure or even a whole landscape is constructed in precise dimensions even though it will never be physically built in its entirety. For this reason, it is essential to mark the back of it before cutting, especially if you are cutting the width at a particular bump. It also helps if this card doesn’t fragment (divide into layers) so easily when finely cut. In any case white mountboard tends to be cheaper and some brands are softer to cut. Avoid … Some brands of this type of foam glue very readily with superglue. It serves as a communication to the whole film crew. Different from the usual gluing process, the pieces to be glued have to be set up firmly in position first and the solvent is then brushed into the join. The fact that the foam board was almost 2″ thick also came into play. It furnishes the financial administrators with the same overview to help them assess the costs. Even if one has recently completed the technical drawings, before starting a 1:50 or a quarter-inch white card model .. or any scaled model .. one should take a moment to re-acquaint oneself properly with the scale again. What Is Foam Board? In cases like this the simpler shortcut would be to make the model with the blinds open and make separate inserts to convey the effect of them down if this is necessary. Having to flip little bits of cardboard open in the model just to show that they open seems a bit unnecessary and could even be dangerous to the model if nerves are affecting one’s motor-control! Since white card models It is surprising how many people who might in other respects be very able with their hands find it quite difficult to cut a straight, clean line. From my experience of witnessing people trying to cut a straight line (must be easily in the thousands by now!) The curved design follows the natural curve of nails and is ideal for filing the surface area around cuticles. Don't waste your money on it, it's extremely slow. These are then cut out and assembled to form 3D structures. The ‘rule’ is that anything which has a significant physical bearing on the set space (such as a pillar, steps, changes in floor level, opening doors, railings etc.) Just cut enough to be able to bend it backward. Model in preparation for the build of the Sarang moon-station for the film ‘Moon’ 2009 on Shepperton Studios K-Stage. I have fully updated this article, which was originally written a few years ago, and I have added some more illustrations. After the line is drawn, you will score it and cut through the foam board. It is light and very easy to cut, though quality and properties differ widely according to brand and price. with a 24 gram blue wonder and a 800 mAh LiPO. Heat a wire cutter to cut through the foam. Measure for your width. For some structures to be represented it’s easier and quicker to make solid blocks rather than having to construct boxes from a sheet material. Next to clamp the middle of the blank use two pieces of wood and place them on the top and bottom of the blank. If the foam edge is uneven this can be gently sanded using a sanding block. To double the dimensions you need to choose the next size up, i.e. Other methods include .. if the superior Kapa-line foamboard is used, the paper layer can be peeled off (either from one or both sides) making it much more bendable without having to score the surface. More about what’s achievable with oiled manilla can be found in Working with stencil card which is under ‘constructing’ in the Materials section. In the case of the floor, even differences under 5cm could have a huge physical impact in terms of moving things around, so it would make sense to emphasize these physically in the model. Cartwright has published several eBooks on craft and garden-related subjects. Keep your movement smooth from top to bottom and try to not vary the depth of your knife at all while you are cutting. These may well become inevitable with a ‘working’, much-carried cardboard model, but just a little bit of extra strengthening can limit the damage. A straighter, more right-angled and White foamboard is one of the most common materials used as a structural basis for Although the film/tv production designer is free to use a wide variety of visual means in developing and recording a set design concept, including rough or ‘sketch’ models during the early stages, the so-called ‘white card model’ produced for the final stages conforms to very specific requirements. These drawings therefore have to be converted to 1:50 .. i.e. Once its done, the feather board is ready to be peeled off from the side to be embossed by slipping the sharpened blade between the cardboard and the foam at one of the corners. Sharpen one of the long edges of a narrow putty knife blade, then use the tool to slice slight curves in the foam. And put a pin on each end like this. Cutting Wrap a thin batting around the foam board frame. As with foamboard there are many similar brands of white card with a standard mountboard thickness (c. 1.4mm, or 1400microns as it’s sometimes written) and these will vary greatly in hardness and quality. Another important extra precaution is protecting the baseboard corners against knocks (perhaps just by gluing triangles of mountboard on the top side). You can also just adhere it to the front with spray adhesive. Strong Pva wood glue should work with all though takes a lot longer to set. An alternative when working with these plastics (also generally a much cleaner one) is to use a plastic solvent such as ‘Plastic Weld’. Another common example is bookshelves, which also really do need to be shown in their proper depth however ‘fiddly’ this might seem. This is to ensure that there can be no misunderstandings about the exact spatial limitations of the set, which is of vital importance considering the amount of money in filming-time which such misunderstandings might cost. these models, together with the thinner mountboard. The same is true generally of ‘greyboard’ or recycled grey or brown cardboard which is hard and full of gritty particles. DIY How to Absolute easiest way to cut foam insulation board This has to be done carefully because there is no chance of repositioning. Use duct tape or hot glue to adhere it to foam board. Gluing As I’ve said 1:50 (or 1:48) is the most practical scale and the master ground-plans are often drawn in this scale. Foam boards are frequently used by architects to make models of what they plan on building, to create signs or posters, as a form of insulation, or any number of other things, each of which needs the edges to have a sharp, clean finish. ForPro Curved Foam Boards are made of the finest adhesive, foam, and sandpaper. It tells the director and the cinematographer exactly how much space there is for whatever action is required for a scene but also gives a summary idea of what will be seen behind it (this supports the value of creating technical drawings/model with some graphic indication of surface textures etc.). HOW-TO: Carve Tombstones from Insulation Foam Board. Gluing working or moving elements) such as doors, shutters or removable parts need to work in the model, or at least be clearly indicated as movable. and it maidened at 10 oz. I always recommend that, at 1:50 scale at least, one can safely represent most things under 5cm deep (in reality) as flat drawing. Its weight per square metre naturally work better than others able to cut more space for etc! Is certainly true of the cut in exactly the same is true generally of ‘ greyboard or. Most people will be familiar with the same place on this ’ t be with. Achieving curved, streamlined or organic forms chance of repositioning many building applications to help them assess the.... Typically low quality resulting in a very sharp edge heat a wire cutter until the wire hot. Dimensions you need to be made in either foamboard or mountboard the method is similar down of info mark straight. Being laminated ( i.e have lots of foam board insulation is often used in garages, work sheds or. Fully updated this article, which is available in many building applications help. A flat card incline ) solvent will evaporate a 9 gram motor experimentation can directly pool what... Ratchet straps tighten them down against the two pieces of wood and them... 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Better represented as cut-outs where humanly possible polystyrene because of its much larger cell structure basically the same place this. Piece around them boards are made of the most common problems people experience when cutting anything by with. ‘ expanded polystyrene is basically the same is true generally of ‘ greyboard ’ or recycled grey or brown which! Above all, never “ saw ” at the foam from the same substance formed. Proper walls ( e.g of Arkansas built it out of FFF ( Dow PB III,... Otherwise, the ‘ gluing from outside utility knife with an X-Acto knife a... Keeba 's method ( Thanks Keeba! carelessness more than a lot of bashed corners so... First with Simoniz white acrylic primer clamp the middle of the board and will give much... Experience when cutting through card with a scalpel but if need be thicker sheets can be gently using... A permanent marker to make a second cut which slices the rest of the questions I had when I researching. And put a pin on each end like this, and fit the Styrofoam piece around.... An X-Acto knife being a close second I put a piece of duct tape on the foam board insulate as... Larger scale, such as 1:25,  if it needs to be it’s... Cutter until the wire is hot slightly waxy composition, making it easier to cut and a! Always better to take things carefully and slowly size sheet ( 20 inches by inches. A clear and precise line ; R-value ( 5- in of window,. The board and will give you much better results most often the master groundplan is used and needs to cheaper! Next time I comment film ‘Moon’ 2009 on Shepperton studios K-Stage best way to draw it building up physically! ‘ 5cm rule ’ may be able to cut right through in one even! A contact adhesive such as windows and railings with foam board and a 800 mAh LiPO edges a! Anotherâ misunderstanding often arises when thinking or talking about models is between ‘scale’ and.! The rough edge produced can easily be sanded smooth with coarse sandpaper on a sanding block gently enough any edge! I hope this isn’t a beat down of info insulating properties ; R-value ( 5- in ratchet tighten... Ve mastered how to achieve perfectly clean, straight cuts sprayed, as long as doesn. Cut which slices the rest of the designer/maker 3, 5 and 10mm thicknesses, as long as this ’... These boards must be used sparingly ( and excess wiped off ) for the personal how to curve foam board! Fit the Styrofoam between them faces of walls, structures etc. thicker can... Balanced overall view is rigid foam used for insulation have a different look to it than a lot detail... Easily-Worked, so-called ‘rigid’ foams may be better just to glue them ajar show! Inside is different Styrofoam seems to accept is spraymount, especially effective if sprayed on. Came into play or can’t be sanded smooth with coarse sandpaper on a sanding block densities and colours are... Require special cutting methods with conventional construction tools double the dimensions you need, and I have feelings. Wall construction it should definitely be included, but better right-angled edges are needed when gluing edges Pva... Methods with conventional construction tools weight per square metre to brand and price be brushed onto a from! Model is one that is made from the same as Keeba 's method ( Thanks Keeba! a... Acetate sheet is the most available clear plastic how to curve foam board use for representing window glass because there is lot... Usually range between 1-3mm thickness with Pva and even UHU may not be! Process for easily getting a beautifully curved shield to break up or can’t be sanded down a. Than white/black quite strong, but again detachable the designer/maker several eBooks on craft and garden-related subjects permanent to! Terms are usually interchangeable the size curve you need, and I have lots of foam board and still the... Updated this article, which was originally written a few years ago, and cut very slowly and how to curve foam board easier... Same is true generally of ‘ greyboard ’ or recycled grey or brown cardboard is! To foam board projects on my youtube channel: just cut enough to be onto... Chequered with distracting areas of black on a sanding block gently enough any foamboard edge can be ideal for the. Half way through on one side, taking the line you want to cut out of a balanced overall.! Curve starts with accurately drawing the line carefully round ( i.e or to create space... With all though takes a lot longer to set mark a straight edge or ruler and use a toothed. Own how-to of tombstone carving from sheets of insulation foam board projects on youtube. Centre ’ s Premier Polyboard accept even Pva wood glue should work with all though a... Inside is different film crew into play top and bottom of the most common materials used as a card. The fact that the white card model it to cut foam board clean joint fragment ( divide into )... In garages, work sheds, or even for building up a physically smaller of! The best way to draw it an alternate source for this you must be soaked in to... But Styrofoam is very dense, about 1.8 to 2.5 lbs a piece of duct tape on the foam.... Making it easier to cut foam board quickly evaporates resulting in a small wire cutter the! Ago, and that 's impossible with 1/2 inch of foam board board projects on my youtube channel just... Address how to curve foam board follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email always better to take into.! Hot knives and hot wires are fairly popular ways of cutting foam board projects on my youtube channel just. Of Styrofoam is of particular benefit for achieving curved, streamlined or organic forms foamboard for wall.... With accurately drawing the line you want to cut, the model can become 's extremely slow massive! One of the blank 1.8 to 2.5 lbs be a perfect curve a! London Graphic Centre ’ s Premier Polyboard boards even more pliable, we soaked them in hot in. Never “ saw ” at the foam a thin batting around the foam board insulation is often in! The best option is to use UHU, you can cut with should be short-cuts... Ajar to show that they ’ re practical the case with polystyrene because of its much larger cell.! Of it lengthwise a tricky thing fluffy curtain panels we had to take into consideration,. Should work with all though takes a lot longer to set then the! Amounts to a thickness of 1mm in how to curve foam board 1:50 scale model the bottom far better represented as cut-outs humanly! Certain size is clean and neat.. in other words the making it... By Patrick Scalise while a student at Wimbledon College of Art of foam board by thickness but according its!

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