We all know styrofoam. It’s that white light-weight material that protects your goods while it is shipped. It may come as chips, molded pieces or even raw blocks and sheets. It’s used as insulation, shock absorber, modelling material and much more. But most of all, it is cheap! You can buy big blocks of it for a few dollars or find big pieces in your nearest dumpster for free! This is probably why most people see it as trash and not a building material. Well Make: magazine is here to show you how useful it can be! In this particular tutorial they make Halloween tombstone props but if you watch the video, you should easily see how these techniques can be used to make almost any form out of cheap and feather light styrofoam! And by the way, you don’t need special tools like soldering iron or a hot wire foam cutter. Tools like scissors, files, knifes and sandpaper can just as easily be used, although the surface might become a bit rougher. But since acetone (nail polish remover) can melt styrofoam, perhaps you can use a acetone damp paper towel to polish those surfaces? Now that would be a neat experiment!
Do you think foam sheets can’t be used for Hollywood grade suits? Then check out the video below! Foam materials are vastly underrated and have enormous potential, especially when it comes to props, costumes and movie-making! In this video, we hope you will be convinced that foam materials doesn’t only look great, it is also a very cheap and easy way of making beautiful costumes! Many thanks to Indy Mogul, not only for making this technique accessible for everyone, but also for their astonishing work on making a Hollywood grade 12 minute Sci-Fi short film on a backyard budget! Indy Mogul rocks!
This is an absolutely excellent tutorial on how to make carbon fiber pieces for cheap! Did you think making carbon fiber parts was messy, expensive and complicated? Well, unless you’re doing some curved shapes, you’re wrong! For most applications, there are pre-made carbon fiber products, such as carbon fiber planes, carbon fiber profiles, even carbon fiber parts that you can buy for a couple of bucks and change yourself with ordinary cheap tools. If you have a hacksaw, you can cut carbon fiber products! Just make sure you follow the safety advice in this video because even though carbon fiber products aren’t toxic, it can cause you a lot of irritations if you do not use proper safety.
When Adam Savage heard that Patton Oswalt was looking for a Doctor Octopus costume, he got a brilliant idea of how it could be done easily and cheaply, as he explains to Norm from Tested.com in this clip. But this is not the reason we wanted to add this video, instead we would like to point out that this technique is much more useful. You could basically do any kind of poseable light weight life form with only foam, armature wire and paint. Want to make a life-sized alien for the Halloween party? No problem, just create a rough skeleton out of the wires, glue some foam on it and spray pant it to likeness!