Saturday, 18 June 2016

28mm tree tutorial

After I flocked the big tree I made in a previous post, I didn't like the look of it, so I tried flocking a different tree with coloured Sawdust and I liked look of it much more.

I admit its not the most realistic tree I've ever seen, but it looks good and they are a tough as old boots, the ones I made for the store have had constant use for 2+ years now and aside from 1 with a base snapped in half, they are still in great shape.
Final Product
Since the  method of construction has changed slightly since my original post, I will detail the constructions and materials used in this new post.

1mm Plastic coated wire.
Heavy duty scouring pads.
Hot glue
Coloured sawdust or similar.
1 base per tree (I use circular 50mm MDF)
PVA glue
Spray glue

I have gotten the Heavy Duty Scouring pads from both Home Hardware and Home Depot, they are located with the steel wool and are for removing flaking and/or loose paint from things you are going to repaint. A brick is 3.5"x 5" and 1" thick.
$3 for this, its a 2 pack and 3 bricks will make 2 tress.
Cut each brick into 6 roughly equal sized rectangles. Trim off the corners and edges (keep the off cuts).
Slice each piece almost in half.

Cut 8 pieces of plastic coated wire, each piece 6" long. Bend the bottom of each piece to make a L shape about 1/2" to 1/4" long.
These piees are 12" long then bent in half with the foot then added, but this is the shape your 6" pieces shold be.

Bundle the 8 pieces together, feet at the bottom. I use masking tape to hold the bundle together. Glue bundle to base.

From the foot of the tree measure about 2.5" up and bend out 5 of the wires, then measure 2" more  and bend out 2 more wires leaving the last wire standing straight up.

Cover all the tree trunk sections in masking tape, then cover all the masking tape in white glue and then pour sand on the white glue, when the glue is dry cover the sand in a diluted PVA water mix to seal the sand, let it dry again.

When it is dry again paint the trunk brown or whatever colour you want it to be, and dry brush a lighter colour.

Hot glue the scouring pad blobs to the branches. The reason for slitting your blobs almost in half, now is revealed, apply hot glue to the end of a branch then have your blob bite down on the hot glue.
Nom nom nom.
Glue your off cuts on to break up the angularity of your tree, and fill in any unsightly gaps.

At this point I spray paint my canopy black, protecting the trunk and base (if I have done the base of the tree ) with aluminium foil. I find the spray paint strengthens the scouring pad and holds the canopy together a bit. Afterwards you can dry brush the pads brown, in case you shed some of the flocking at a later date, so the bare patch will look a little bit like bare branches.

Apply spray adhesive onto your scouring pads (Again protecting trunk and base with Aluminum foil) and either sprinkle your flocking onto it or pour a bunch of flocking into a bag, poke your tree canopy into the bag and shake it. Wait for the glue to dry, give your tree a bit of a tap removing the really loose flock, and then cover the flock in a 50/50 mix of watered down PVA. For maximum flock retention I recommend doing the last stage at least twice.

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