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Thread: Silicone & Fabric fins - Progress pictures

  1. #1
    Senior Member Undisclosed Pod
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    Silicone & Fabric fins - Progress pictures

    Hello everymer! So, I've been playing around with the use of silicone caulking and have figured out a way to make some embellishment fins (side and dorsal) that I'm quite happy with! Here's a few pictures of my progress so far, and I hope to have them ready by morning to add to my new tail.

    I started with a clear sheet of plastic as my working base (as silicone will not stick to it) and measured and cut out patterns for the fins I was working on:


    Then I stretched out the fabric I wanted to use over the plastic using straight quilting pins:


    These are the zip ties I used as the tines:


    And a shot of the dorsal fin still drying after I finished:



    I did have to work FAST to get the top fabric to stick after I sandwiched them together, but I practiced a few times before I started these and I think I got them pretty well! Right now, I have three sheets of fabric drying outside - the thickness of the silicone around the zip ties makes it take a bit longer to dry, but even still, only about 6-7 hours in total from start to finish!

    In case you were wondering, yes, I did have to use my hands to get the fabric to stick and somewhat sculpt the silicone into the correct shape, but it peeled off my hands pretty easily when I was done, and my exposure time was brief. Also, I wore a mask while working and had all the windows and doors open, and the fans blowing too.

    The next step will be cutting out the fins, figuring out how to attach them to the neoprene, and testing to see if paint will stick to the fabric with silicone in it! ^_^
    Last edited by Moonflower; 03-14-2012 at 12:05 AM.

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  2. #2
    Senior Member Euro Pod Azurin Luna's Avatar
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    I've had about the same idea for a new tail that has been brewing, only not with zipties but with plastic strings or strips so that I can have light shine through it. Kinda like the floresent jellies look like. I only have to figure out to safely tuck the electronics away.

    I hope it will work well for you
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  3. #3
    Senior Member Pod of The South
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    Which kind of silicone are you using? I was on the phone with the manufacturers for a very long time because they apparently have, like, 30 different Silicone I and II products.

    I'm running some tests right now with three of them.

  4. #4
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    Ummm... this one:



    I don't really know, I grabbed the mid-range priced one that said "clear".

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  5. #5
    Zip ties! That's a great idea
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  6. #6
    Senior Member Chesapeake Pod ShyMer's Avatar
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    I am rather interested in seeing how it turns out with the zip ties. I love the ridges they make.

  7. #7
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    Here's the sheets after they had cured:


    Cutting them out:


    The dorsal fin(s):


    And a comparison shot between my original sketch design and the final fins:

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  8. #8
    Senior Member Chesapeake Pod ShyMer's Avatar
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    That looks awesome! :O

  9. #9
    Nice! Glad to see I'm not the only one that tried zip ties!
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  10. #10
    Wow! I can't wait to see that in water. I bet your gonna get a really nice and realistic transparent look.
    Way to go!

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  11. #11
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    I was interested in begining work with this product since it is a thickened silicone - still 100% silicone, but not necessry to have to deal with molds and such. I learned a lot by talking to both, the people at GE who produce it, and handymen who work with it. Per the handymen, this stuff will bond to pretty much anything. So you shouldn't even need to thin a coat first to attach it to neoprene - it will attach. Now what the woman at GE had to offer was very insightful. There is a costumer in LA who uses this product in his costuming. So it HAS been used for this purpose.

    However, all but two of their products are made with a mildicide agent - a chemical it gives off to prevent molding. This chemical will continue releasing for 5-7 years, according to the woman, and so if you have any intention at all on using this in a natural area, or an area that houses fish or other fragile life, make sure you only use one of the two types that do not have the mildicide agent! Also, I would assume if it would kill fish, it can't be that great for you, either

    The two that she told me were safe were the Silicone I Window/Door/Attic/Basement
    and Silicone II Supreme 2X Stretch Window/Door/Attic/Basement

    I am still experimenting with both of these, along with the Silicone II Paintable Silicone - that one is not 100% silicone because there is an added product that is not silicone that allows it to be painted. I ideally want to work with the 100% silicone products since that will hold up more or less indefinitely. But, I have this product to test out as a plan B if I cannot find a way to mix in color/paint the 100% silicone.

    So for your own health, and the health of any fishies or areas that might come in contact with anything made with this product, make sure you use one of the two that would not harm anything

  12. #12
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    Cool, well I just checked and the one I used was the "Silicone I Window/Door/Attic/Basement" one ^_^

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  13. #13
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    Perfect

    Works nice, doesn't it?

  14. #14
    Holy canoli!
    Those look amazing! :'D
    I can't wait to see the whole thing <3 !

    Also, Moon, a trick to handling the caulk without it sticking to your hands is to keep a cup of very soapy warm water with you~
    Just dip your hands in the water and let the excess drip off and the caulk won't stick to you :')
    I do it all the time when it comes to smoothing out the top layers xD
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  15. #15
    Wow, nice idea!

  16. #16
    Senior Member Undisclosed Pod lynsea's Avatar
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    If you wouldn't mind, could you post a bit more about how exactly you did this. I am a little confused how you did the silicone and fabric combo. (Basically is it just silicone squished between two pieces of fabric that you then molded? Either way, these look excellent and it is a really good idea.

    Idea: Leave a bit of extra fabric on the bottom of the fin so you can sew it into the body of your tail.

  17. #17
    Those are sexy, and this is perfect! Way better then what I was going to try and experiment with when I tried to make my own tail / fins. If you would be willing to post a clear step my step instruction of to that would be amazing and I would love you forever


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  18. #18
    http://www.mixol.de/front_content.ph from what I have read by a few home owners, this is an excellent silicone tint you can mix with that kind of silicone..
    I havent tried it but its an idea ^.^

    also Ive read that you can use acrylic paint.. some guy I was reading about did it with red acrylic to make some inner ear plugs.
    He said it got gummy REALLY fast though..

    **edit
    I just read that the silicone drys faster when you add acrylic paint to it... fascinating.. so a little acrylic is good if you are doing thick layers to ensure that it dries through instead of leaving the middle mushy or the bottom squishy..


    also you might be able to use the acrylic paint idea with small amounts of silicone and rub it into the already cured silicone (small amounts so it doesnt get all dried out and wasted)... as long as the cured silicone is grease and moisture free it will stick from what I understand..
    Last edited by Mermaasai; 03-16-2012 at 10:00 PM.

  19. #19
    http://forums2.gardenweb.com/forums/...385422593.html

    another interesting and helpful source of info..

  20. #20
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    Video of me swimming with the fins ^_^
    Last edited by Moonflower; 03-17-2012 at 12:11 PM.

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