Making Foam Decoys - Getting Started

Share tips and ask questions on all types of duck decoys. Including working, classics, collectable, and carving decoys.

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Making Foam Decoys - Getting Started

Postby ScaupHunter » Fri Jul 06, 2012 1:11 pm

I am looking at buying molds for making my own foam decoys. I want to start building a foam decoy spread and steadily replace my plastic decoys with them as I get groups of them completed. The goal is to have an all foam spread within two years.

I have a few questions on making foam decoys.

1. Besides this forum, which I have read thru most of the posts on the subject, what other forums provide good information on the best methods for making foam decoys?

2. Do you all prefer burlap and the standard overcoating or are there other options to look at?

3. Do you prefer to use two part foam or heat expanding foam in the mold?

4. Which foam is cheaper, easier, and safer to work with?

I look forward to making the first batch of decoys in the near future.
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Re: Making Foam Decoys - Getting Started

Postby m.teeter » Fri Jul 06, 2012 3:39 pm

I have never used any two part foam to make decoys, I carve mine from foam and then burlap them. However, I work at a taxidermy supply company and we make forms from two part expanding foam and the stuff is pretty easy to use. It doesn't take as much as you'd think either. You just mix it 50/50 and pour it in and the stuff goes a long way. Like I said I have never made any decoys with it but I think it should work just fine. You would probably still want to burlap the finished product just for extra durability. If you have any questions just shoot me a PM.
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Re: Making Foam Decoys - Getting Started

Postby ScaupHunter » Fri Jul 06, 2012 4:40 pm

M.teeter,

What does a gallon of the foam cost? Where do you normally pick it up? I priced the foam used for boats which is polyurethane and it is $350 for 5 gallons online. $114 for 1 gallon. I did read that it expands 30 to 1. You will definately need to mastic and burlap the decoys since polyurethane will absorb water over time.

That is part of why I am debating about using polyethylene foam pellets and heating them to make the decoys. I have read that the shipping on the polyethylene has gone thru the roof so I am trying to figure out which method is going to work better for me.
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Re: Making Foam Decoys - Getting Started

Postby woodduck31 » Fri Jul 06, 2012 4:48 pm

I make my own foamer decoys, you can find how to information on dedduck.com

If you want to avoid the cookie cutter look of molded foamers you can learn to carve and burlap your own decoys.

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Re: Making Foam Decoys - Getting Started

Postby ScaupHunter » Fri Jul 06, 2012 6:45 pm

Thanks for the information. I will check the site out. Those are some sweet looking decoys!
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Re: Making Foam Decoys - Getting Started

Postby quackshot » Sat Jul 07, 2012 8:53 am

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Re: Making Foam Decoys - Getting Started

Postby woodduck31 » Sat Jul 07, 2012 10:13 am

Just as silo decoys can create a sense of motion, so can multiple poses in decoys. Having the same tin soldier look in a spread can leave it looking lifeless, we call it a "dead spread". A lot of the reason I got into carving my own foamers was back in those days all decoys were the same. We did the molded decoy thing, but quickly grew out of that and progressed into carving decoys out of foam and wood. The cost of buying molds and the foam is going up everyday, but the cost of making your own carved foamers is still relatively inexpensive and for the most part can be done with materials you can buy or acquire locally. Most of the difficulty in making your own hand carved foamer decoys is in the knowing how, you can find that at ded outdoors. Once you get onto the process the carving part, basically the artistic part will take about 15 minutes per decoy, the rest of the process is more or less just knowing how and doing it. I've got guys I've helped making some pretty incredible stuff after just a few months. One of my friends that learned how to make foamers here at my shop won a decoy competition at rappahannock this year with his 20th foamer decoy.

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Re: Making Foam Decoys - Getting Started

Postby teamoutlaw » Wed May 08, 2013 3:04 pm

those look awesome
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