Balsa-Foam® is different from other plastic foams because it can be easily carved with traditional and non-traditional hand tools to create the shape and design you want. It can then be decorated with any paint just like balsa wood.
Balsa-Foam® (soft density) is great for students because it's easier to sculpt and does not require the use of sharp tools. Balsa-Foam® (hard density) is still easy to carve and shape like Balsa-Foam soft density but the higher density holds intricate detail and is more durable.
Since Balsa-Foam® has no "memory" or rebound, it will hold an impression. This means you can create detailed shapes by simply pressing any object into the surface. A steel ruler can be used to make push cuts as a way to cut out more complex interior shapes. Carving knives and chisels virtually glide through Balsa-Foam® soft density and cut relatively easily through Balsa-Foam® hard density. Experiment with all sorts of tools to find the ones that work best for you.
Tips for using Balsa-Foam®:
- Most glues work well with Balsa-Foam® including wood glue, hot glue. When bonding two blocks of BalsaFoam® to make a larger block for carving, keep the adhesive well inside the ultimate shape to avoid having a glue seam that is difficult to carve across.
- Any type of water-based or solvent-based paint or coating can be used to decorate your Balsa-Foam® project. An initial coat of Krylon spray paint will help seal the foam.
- Balsa-Foam® is AP certified however the dust can cause eye irritation. Do not rub eyes while using and wash hands after using. The use of safety goggles and/or dust mask are recommended when sanding or using power tools.