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Gluing foam together

Discussion in 'Puppet Building and Performing' started by Kzyoung, Aug 2, 2017.

  1. Kzyoung

    Kzyoung Member

    I've finally started building my first puppet. First I tried using hot glue but right away the glue didnt hold. Then I tried rubber cement which worked okay and held its shape once it all dried, but I feel like it won't hold up in the long run. I want to avoid using contact cement or anything toxic since I dont really have the means to work with them. Does anyone have any suggestions or alternatives to contact cement?
  2. D'Snowth

    D'Snowth Well-Known Member

    Unfortunately, hot glue is perhaps your best alternative, you just have to be patient with it (and make sure you're wearing a good pair of gloves). Unlike cements or other adhesives, hot glue doesn't adhere instantaneously, you have to hold the pieces together firmly and give the glue a chance to bond, which does take a few minutes, and your fingers and thumbs do get tired, but that's how hot glue works.

    I'm not sure if spray adhesive could be used as an alternative, I've never tried it on foam before, but similar to contact, you spray it first, give it at least a minute to get tacky, then press the pieces together so they'll bond. But again, this is usually for attaching things like eyes or other features, and again, I haven't tried it on foam rubber, so I don't know how that would hold up.

    If you were ever willing to invest in a good respirator, like this one I ordered from Walmart a couple of years ago (link: https://www.walmart.com/ip/3M-6300-Large-6000-Series-Facepiece-Respirator-Half-Mask/21779006), with the right kind of cartridges for breathing, I think you would enjoy working with the contact, because it's amazing: rather than spending you time gluing and holding, gluing and holding, you could start applying the contact to the foam, then move onto other pieces, then depending on how many other pieces you have to apply the contact to, it could be time to already go back and start pressing the older pieces together to stick (it usually takes about 15 minutes for the contact to dry).
  3. Kzyoung

    Kzyoung Member

    Thanks for the advice. Right now the rubber cement seems to be working quite well and is surprisingly stronger than I thought. I used Elmer's Craft Bond Rubber Cement so maybe that's why its stronger. I'll still be looking into buying a respirator and I'll experiment with using thr hot glue in another puppet.

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