Author Topic: Painting Styrofoam  (Read 3458 times)

The_head_of_Neal

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Painting Styrofoam
« on: 24 July 2011, 01:23:48 »
I am building some 3D terrain for my Gencon scenario in two weeks (Bring Me the Head of Neal 3).  I used a hot knife to cut the hills and applied a mixture of wood glue and water (3/1 ratio).  Then I sprayed GW's Roughcover on them.  It matches our full color map, and I am very happy.

We have some foam building,  The GW guy said the glue mixture would protect the foam from the roughcover any reason I can't use regular paint after I apply the glue mixture or will the paint eat the foam.

john blackwell

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Re: Painting Styrofoam
« Reply #1 on: 24 July 2011, 01:25:21 »
Sounds like it's rather cool.  Do you have pics?  I'd love to see them.

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Brother Jim

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Re: Painting Styrofoam
« Reply #2 on: 24 July 2011, 01:35:13 »
What do you mean by "regularr paint"?

The glue should protect the foam.

 Here's a tip for your next terrain project: Mix some acrylic paint into the glue/water mix

The_head_of_Neal

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Re: Painting Styrofoam
« Reply #3 on: 24 July 2011, 01:48:33 »
By regularr paint I mean I can't spell too good.  LOL

Good to know it will be protected, I think the buildings can now be an more interesting color.

Brother Jim

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Re: Painting Styrofoam
« Reply #4 on: 24 July 2011, 03:51:20 »
FWIW I misspelled "regular" not you.  ;D

M-Rex

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Re: Painting Styrofoam
« Reply #5 on: 24 July 2011, 03:54:06 »
Roughcover?


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spaceman spiff

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Re: Painting Styrofoam
« Reply #6 on: 24 July 2011, 04:22:13 »
as far as enamel-based spray paints go, Testors spray paint and ONLY Testors spray paint will work on styrofoam without eating away at it. i have tested many varieties of spray paint on foam and to this day, Testors is the only one i've found that does not destroy styrofoam. i've head that household latex acrylic paint also makes for good terrain coverage, but i have not tried this.
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Charlie Tango

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Re: Painting Styrofoam
« Reply #7 on: 24 July 2011, 04:49:43 »


Cover the foam in Acrylic Gesso; the stuff artists use for prepping canvases. 

You can get a huge bottle of the cheap stuff for under $10.  You can even tint it by mixing in acrylic paint with the white Gesso.  You can paint over it no problem, even spray paint it, it makes a nice clean smooth surface for painting.  Going to be working on some terrain tonight for one of the CSO quickstrike games at Gencon by doing just that...
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Tressel

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Re: Painting Styrofoam
« Reply #8 on: 24 July 2011, 06:10:24 »
I have used latex paint before and it works great. I just go to my local Lowes and buy it buy the gallon. They have 1000's of color to choose from or they can custom color match it to pretty much any color you can bring them a sample of. Just make sure the sample is at least about an inch in diameter. For tables we just roll it on just like you would the walls of your home and then use a brush to get in to all the smaller areas like river beds and hills/cliff sides. You don't need the high quality stuff either. Just buy the cheap stuff. It's like $10.00 per gallon.

While the paint is still wet you can add sand or other texture materials and once it dries just throw on another coat of paint. Cover whatever sections you want grass on with white glue and water mix and then hit it with flocking. If you really want to go detailed you then go back and add extra landscape materials like silflor, stacking grass, etc. You can usually get about 3 tables painted  from one gallon.

LordNth

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Re: Painting Styrofoam
« Reply #9 on: 24 July 2011, 07:02:02 »
I have used latex paint before and it works great. I just go to my local Lowes and buy it buy the gallon.
Check the "Whoops" rack.  Someone mixed the wrong color or someone didn't want it.  Those are even cheaper.  I have lots of different blues for painting rivers lakes etc.  Don't always have the right color you need but as I haven't seen any Whoops paint go for more than $5 it's worth the quick look.

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Re: Painting Styrofoam
« Reply #10 on: 24 July 2011, 09:24:31 »
The stuff that eats styrofoam in spray paint is the solvent, that keeps the paint liquid & thin enough to spray. A couple of coats of any acrylic house paint leftovers will work just as well as gesso or glue.

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wemic9

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Re: Painting Styrofoam
« Reply #11 on: 24 July 2011, 12:29:28 »
So long as your foam has complete coverage with the glue mixture you should have no problem with using spray paint especially if it did survive the roughcover.

I generally like to avoid using spray paint though due to the fact that there might be a small spot that was missed with the protective layer.

There are a couple of options if you realy want to use a 'spray' without any worries of the foam being melted
1. you could use a cheap spray gun from WalMart for aroung $60 (its what I use for bigger projects for the base color)
2. you could (if you have one) just use an airbrush (I've used this option for smaller items)
3. You could use Krylons H2O spray piant (kinda hard to find in your local store) though it does dry with a bit of gloss.
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pintotheevil

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Re: Painting Styrofoam
« Reply #12 on: 24 July 2011, 15:37:40 »
as everyone else has said,  as long as you protect it with something, you can spray no worries...

why not just grab some cheap acrylic paint, and some foam brushes, and have at it... that's how I paint my foam terrain.

Noonan

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Re: Painting Styrofoam
« Reply #13 on: 24 July 2011, 16:24:03 »
I guess its odd that I have had nearly 100% success painting pink foam board with spray paint.

I created this board as a base for my Heroscape by making all of the hex impressions and then spray painting with a dark color to create hex lines. I wish I had taken more pictures of the creation process, but I do have some pictures of the board before I painted the hexes green.

There were only 2 places that got damaged by the spray paint. I used duck tape to keep the boards aligned while I was laying in the hexes. When I removed the tape and painted those areas got damaged by the paint. Fortunately, they are on the border and no actual hexes were messed up. The key I found was to have light trigger finger.

Most importantly, I learned that whatever I am doing, I test things on a scrap or discarded piece before working on the project focal point.

Charlie Tango

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Re: Painting Styrofoam
« Reply #14 on: 24 July 2011, 19:11:01 »
I guess its odd that I have had nearly 100% success painting pink foam board with spray paint.


Pink foam board and the kind of Styrofoam being discussed here are two very different things, I think.
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The_head_of_Neal

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Re: Painting Styrofoam
« Reply #15 on: 24 July 2011, 23:30:28 »
While it needs some touch up paint it looks pretty good.
 
I was surprised at how easy it was, and how good it looks.  For about $40 is supplies my Battletech games just went up a notch visually.

Papabees

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Re: Painting Styrofoam
« Reply #16 on: 03 August 2011, 23:48:31 »
as far as enamel-based spray paints go, Testors spray paint and ONLY Testors spray paint will work on styrofoam without eating away at it. i have tested many varieties of spray paint on foam and to this day, Testors is the only one i've found that does not destroy styrofoam. i've head that household latex acrylic paint also makes for good terrain coverage, but i have not tried this.

Design master spray paint will also work. i get mine at Michaels Arts and Crafts store.

Papabees

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Re: Painting Styrofoam
« Reply #17 on: 03 August 2011, 23:51:01 »
Pink foam board and the kind of Styrofoam being discussed here are two very different things, I think.

Nope, it eats them the same although pink and blue are denser than white so the process is not as pronounced.

whiteshadowzo

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Re: Painting Styrofoam
« Reply #18 on: 25 September 2011, 06:42:54 »
    A can of liquid latex house paint won't melt the foam and creates a protective layer. Afterwards you can use whatever kinds of spray paint you'd like. Of course you can use acrylics and krylon water based spray paint to protect and basecoat but its much more expensive per square. I made over some 15 pieces of good sized foam terrain when i was playing MW:AoD and only used half a can which you can get at home depot for, oh, 8 dollars. I bought a second one when I started making my modular hex tiles for CBT. Two coats gets you a nice black base to paint on. Of course they probably sell it in white and grey too. Rustoliums was the brand I bought.

  EDIT. Just decided to shoot to the end of the post without reading others. Others have mentioned the latex paint. Darn I thought I was being original  ::) Funny thing though is that one of the workers at home depot said it would melt thru the foam. I never tried using white packing foam for terrain but I assume its more or less all the same. Keep on painting :)
« Last Edit: 25 September 2011, 06:50:32 by whiteshadowzo »
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btp2k2

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Re: Painting Styrofoam
« Reply #19 on: 26 September 2011, 03:50:17 »
Check the "Whoops" rack.  Someone mixed the wrong color or someone didn't want it. 

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