Save a few dollars by making your own cool lawn decoration items. Whether you intend on using them just a few times a year for various holidays or as something that you would like to enjoy all the time, you can make your decorations out of fiberglass or buy some if you like. Items ranging from fiberglass Buddha statue to an FRP mannequin are all widely sold by businesses around the globe. The production of fiberglass is a toxic and therefore, dangerous process; however, with the right kind of safety equipment, it can be easily done at home following the rules and guidelines to avoid any kind of unwanted hazard. The casting of fiberglass long has been used by prop makers and sculpture artists and now it is also gaining popularity among car enthusiasts and customizers. Here are a few tips to start with. But keep in mind always look for professional help if you find something difficult.
Things You Will Be Needing
- Soft modelling clay
- Clear sealer spray
- Vapour filtration face mask
- Laminating resin and catalyst
- Fiberglass sheets
- Masking tape
- Shape the clay into the form that you desire. When you want texture and various details in the finished decoration, clay is good to use. The clay sculpture will be the mould for the fiberglass. If you are aiming to make larger basic shapes, such as headstones for Halloween you can always use chicken wire to make your basic shape of your mould.
- After the moulded sculpture is ready, spray the sculpture with the clear sealer. A clear sealer is used with soft clays that were not hard baked in an oven. This clear sealer spray helps in keeping the fiberglass from sticking to the surface of the moulded sculpture.
- Now mix the laminating resin and catalyst together according to the directions printed on the package.
- Put on your gloves and mask, and start by cutting strips of the fiberglass sheets. Paint the strip with a layer of laminating resin and place it accordingly on the sculpture. Cover it with another layer of laminating resin. Keep on building the layers until you have reached your desired layers of thickness. But keep in mind to leave yourself an opening to remove the clay later once it has set. Let the resin set.
- Remove all the clay from the fiberglass mould. File to smoothen any rough edges with the help of sandpaper. Now paint the fiberglass sculpture as you desire. After letting the paint dry then give it a spray of clear coat to protect the paint.
Use matte or gloss clear coat to protect the layer of the surface paint depending on the type of look you are going for.
Do not use Styrofoam as the modelling mould for your fiberglass decoration. The resin will melt the Styrofoam.