How to harden plaster...?

Discussion in 'Scratchin' & Bashin'' started by RonP, Jan 18, 2008.

  1. RonP

    RonP Member of the WMRC

    Ok i am making some wire trees and they are looking very nice.
    1. I added beige to the plaster to keep them from being white
    2. dipped in soapy water shook then plastered.
    3. Dried completely
    4. Repeat once
    Will add pictures tonight.

    Hows the best way to seal these ? i want to make them stronger i am happy with even a small improvement for now as i know i'll come up with something in time.

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  2. stdguage

    stdguage Member

    Plastered Wire Trees

    Sorry, I cannot help. Plaster can be quite hard if the calcium content is high. Where did you find this method versus the usual modelling putty or clay on the wire? Is this a paper mache or plain plaster?

    I have used paper mache for other non railroad projects and I did not harden the finished surface. I only coated a polyurethane finish for some water protection and to protect the coloring from chipping.

    Anyways, it looks interesting. I'm interested in seeing how this turns out!
  3. RonP

    RonP Member of the WMRC

    Normal Plaster

    I'll look into this i am going to home depot today to ask for advice.

    The hole project can be seen and commented on here
  4. woodone

    woodone Member

    Plaster is very brittle, so you might have some of the plaster break off your wire. Not sure what you used to color your plaster, but most anything that you add to the plaster will affect the hardness and the time it takes to set up.
    You might want to try using latex paint to coat your wire trees, it will take several coats of paint to build up the wires, but it will be flexable.
    I do like the trees that you have made. If the plaster is sticking to the wire armatures, you could seal them with latex paint too.
    Never tried what you have done, but it sure looks good.
    Let us know how you make out. OH!!! post some photos too.
  5. Biased turkey

    Biased turkey Active Member

    Maybe your trees are fragile , but they sure looks good.
    I'm sorry I can't help you about reinforcing them.

    Good tutorial too.

  6. nachoman

    nachoman Guest

    my advice would be to paint them with good 'ol polyurethane. You want something rather thin that will soak into the pores of the plaster, and dry hard.

  7. ocalicreek

    ocalicreek Member

    Ditto to Kevin's advice, then paint with crackle medium to simulate bark. Follow the directions on the crackle medium to acheive good results or experiment a bit and perhaps come up with something better. If you use the Delta brand crackle, it's cheap so you can afford to experiment a bit.
  8. Renovo PPR

    Renovo PPR Just a Farmer

    A real nice job, I was thinking painting them too.
  9. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery

    How about painting with something that remains slightly flexible when dry? Like the latex paint suggestion above (woodone) or even PVC (white) glue...

  10. TinGoat

    TinGoat Ignorant know it all

    Hi Andrew,

    Instead of using plaster, why don't you use latex caulk?

    It remains flexible.

    It comes in different colours. [Brown, grey, white, clear and some others....]

    It can be painted.

    If it is too thick for dipping, you can thin it out to the consistancy of molasses by adding a little water.

    You might be able to mix with a latex paint to get a different colour and thin it out at the same time.

    Or paint it onto the armatures instead of dipping...

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