Pink or blue foam, Where?

Discussion in 'FAQs' started by pin puller, Feb 23, 2008.

  1. pin puller

    pin puller New Member

    I live in the Sacramento, California area, and have been to all the Home Depot’s and Lowe’s (also Ace hardware) for 50 miles around. I can’t find anyone that has pink or blue foam in 4x8 sheets. They only carry the white beaded styrofoam sheets. I’ve looked in most of the construction sites in my area as well to no avail. I’ve called the manufactures, but they were not any help. Does anyone know where I can obtain a couple of sheets for a small layout? :?
  2. nachoman

    nachoman Guest

    This topic comes up about every other month. Foam is not common in your area. I have been told there are a few suppliers in NoCal, but you may have to travel a few miles. Your other options are - use the white stuff. It does work, but is messier and not as strong. It will do okay for scenery. Or, you can use the old plywood and plaster method. It has worked for many modelers for decades.

  3. hickstmj

    hickstmj Marcie

    I have heard that you can ask at Lowes or Home Depot & they will order it for you.
  4. KCS

    KCS Member

    You may want to check with the Cali state law's on weather they allow this stuff in your area and may be a reason to why you can't find it. However I would check with your local plexiglass dealer, they normally carry it but if not I'm sure they either know someone who does or they can order it but for one person to order I don't know if they'll have a minimum of sheet's you can buy. Or Lowe's and Home Depot doesn't carry this stuff either except that white crap that's hard to work with and very messy!
  5. Jim Krause

    Jim Krause Active Member

    You may have to sneak across the border into Oregon. Of course thats a bit far from Sacramento.
  6. pgandw

    pgandw Active Member

    The blue and/or pink foam is available in California. No, Lowe's and Home Depot don't have it, and it is rare that they will special order it for you. The lumber yards and/or builder suppliers are the places where it can occasionally be found or special ordered. I believe Pacific Building Supply is one such place (actually a chain). There was an independent lumber yard in San Rafael that carried both the foam (in a variety of thicknesses) and Homasote.

    Builders, carpenters, and wood workers looking for quality lumber and supplies don't go to Lowe's or Home Depot, either.

    Consult the Corning and Dow (makers of pink and blue foam) web sites for non-big box dealers, and then call them. You'll find Lowe's and HD are listed as dealers; ignore those listings. The same process works for finding Homasote.

    I always get tickled by the assumption that if Lowe's, HD, or WallyWorld doesn't carry something, that it doesn't exist. Or that if they don't have it, it must be illegal in California. We lived for decades before the big box stores arrived, and we could probably survive without them again. They are just an easy single source location for cheap goods at a cheap price.
  7. Doc Holliday

    Doc Holliday Member

    I'm in Stockton and after a couple on months of searching and a whole lot of phone calls, e-mails and frustration, I finallly gave up and used the white stuff. Save yourself the hassle and just give in to it.
  8. doctorwayne

    doctorwayne Active Member

    I don't use foam for model railroading, but trust me, the blue or pink stuff is much nicer to work with, and certainly worth searching for. ;)

  9. pin puller

    pin puller New Member

    Well, I must admit I started this thread without really searching the forum first. That was dumb, please forgive me. :v8:I really didn’t foresee that this foam would be super hard to get in Northern California. Thanks for your help and suggestions. -- I had just about given up hope finding this wonderful building material when I actually found some! I expanded my search and found a Home Depot in Oroville, Ca that carries Foamular in all sizes. Yes, you heard me right... You can buy pink foam at Home Depot in Oroville, California. I spent a lazy Sunday driving there, :driver1:and now I can start building some awesome hills on my logging layout. :thumb:
  10. railwaybob

    railwaybob Member

    Extruded polystyrene foam board, commonly known by its trademarked name, "Styrofoam" comes in 3 colours depending on the manufacturer - blue, pink, green. There may be other colours but I haven't heard of them.

    If you live in a climate that doesn't need insulation, then your local building supply stores probably don't stock it. Up here in Canada, it's a regular item available in most large building supply stores.

    If you can't get it at a retail establishment, locate a wholesale establishment that sells to the construction trades. If you visit the "Modular Layout Forum" of "The Gauge", you'll find some tips, tricks, and references.

    Bob M.
  11. doctorwayne

    doctorwayne Active Member

    That's why is surprises me that it's so difficult to locate in California - insulation is valid anywhere that there's a temperature difference between indoors and outdoors. I guess the carcinogenic properties of foam outweigh those of the powerplant emissions produced to run everybody's air conditioners. :rolleyes::p

  12. ezdays

    ezdays Out AZ way

    I think the bottom line here is the bottom line. Cost is why the polystyrene foam is more available than the extruded stuff. Both are available here in Arizona, but for the most part, homes and other buildings that are to be stuccoed are all wrapped in the white stuff. You know, once it's covered in chicken wire and stucco, who knows what's under there. I don't know what the relative costs are, but I do know that the white foam is cheaper. I've found the extruded stuff at Home Depot, Loew's and at other building material stores in limited supply, while the white stuff, I see that by the truckloads all over town.
  13. jetrock

    jetrock Member

    Indeed--Sacramento homes need insulation, but we need it primarily to keep the cold in, not out! I'm in Sacramento too, and have been on the same foam journey. I broke down and bought the beaded stuff.

    Although I'm pretty sure I have seen the pink foam at the Home Depot on Howe Avenue.
  14. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

    Another foam product that I first heard about at a workshop put on by Bragdon Enterprises at a GAT Show is tan with a metal foil bonded to one side. The foam is very similar to the pink or blue stuff and the foil peels off very easily (necessary if you want to run wireless dcc). I've seen it at Home Depot and Lowes in the past, but I haven't looked for it in a few years.
  15. 60103

    60103 Pooh Bah

    One of my friends used to work for a company that supplied a white foam building block. The blocks are assembled as a mold for the walls and concrete poured between. The foam is left as inner and outer insulation.
    I don't have product name or anything, but it looks better than beaded foam. Pieces are the size of concrete blocks.

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