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Discussion Boards => General Discussion => Topic started by: jesse on June 29, 2007, 09:17:45 PM

Title: Painting styrofoam
Post by: jesse on June 29, 2007, 09:17:45 PM
On a scenery kit, I am told to paint the styrofoam base an earthtone color, but the instructions fail to say what kind of paint.

I am new at scenery so I could use some advice.  I would hate to put the wrong stuff on and melt the foam base.



Title: Re: Painting styrofoam
Post by: WoundedBear on June 29, 2007, 09:19:40 PM
Any cheapo, home improvement place, LATEX based paint. Ask for mis-tints.....sometimes you can grab a pint for 2 bucks or so.


Title: Re: Painting styrofoam
Post by: jesse on June 29, 2007, 09:26:13 PM
Thanks, Sid.  I'll swing by Lowes tomorrow and pickup some 'light' dirt colored latex. 


Title: Re: Painting styrofoam
Post by: Bojangle on June 29, 2007, 11:14:53 PM
Woodland scenics has a small set of acrylic "trackside" paints, and many other earthtone washes, mostly Sienna and Umber.  Most water based paints are suitable. Krylon has spray acrylic but hard to find around here. 

I'm new to scenics also, I bought the Woodland dvd and scenery book, a good investment.


Title: Re: Painting styrofoam
Post by: LD303 on June 30, 2007, 12:29:01 AM
The advice on checking out the paint counter at your local home imp. store is an excellent one.
 Never use any paint except latex [water based] or that styro will turn into a gooey mess....[ask me how I know! ;)]. The common kinds of spray paint have solvents that melt the stryro and any oil base paint will do the same.
  I use styrofoam and extruded [insulation] foam, I paint it with cheap Wally World latex...usually brown or gray....and then use various earth tones to shade it and add some contrast...then I cover it with turf,foliage,trees etc.   

Title: Re: Painting styrofoam
Post by: Woody Elmore on June 30, 2007, 07:57:37 AM
Go to an Artist's supply store or a place like Michael's and pick up some artist's acrylic paint in tubes. I found that raw and burnt umber, raw and burnt sienna and yellow ochre were all  the colors I needed.  I also kept a tube of Titanium white and black to brighten or darken mixes that I made.

Be careful with yellow ochre - it looks like mustard and a little goes a long way. You can then get a quart of cheap white latex or acrylic paint and mix your own colors. You can also try some base colors other than white.

You do have to experiment.  Don't be afraid to try more than one tint in a batch. You'll find (as I did) that the paints you make often dry to a different color. My first experiment with painting some hillsides a brown color wound up giving me pink hills!

Here's a good suggestion that I learned the hard way. When you get a base color that you like, write down the tints you used to make it. 

Title: Re: Painting styrofoam
Post by: jesse on June 30, 2007, 11:04:29 AM
Many thanks for all the suggestions and hints on preparing the styrofoam base.  I'll print this out for a future reference.