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Hey Folks,

So this year I've finally decided to begin work on a Spooky Town. I have some good ideas, but in order to pull them off, I need to figure out how to carve steps into the foam that I'm using. It seems simple enough, but making to look good has proven to be harder than I thought. I've scoured the internet and have found some great examples, but not much in the way of technical instructions. I want to carve the steps through a sloping terrain that will lead all the way up to a haunted mansion, so lots of curves etc. Anyone out there with some good techniques for this?

Thanks!
 

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I spent a lot of time at the Hot Wire Foam Factory booth at Scare L.A. I told the vendor about the foam display platforms I see for sale on ebay, wondered how the foam was cut to make rock cliffs and such. She demonstrated how by using their thin wire tool. Then with a their 4 inch blade, she cut stairs. I was SOLD!!! I haven't yet used the tools to make a base, but I have used the blade to cut edges of tombstones and the engraver for the epitaphs.

Have you looked on youtube for videos? I think I saw some with people making landscapes for train sets. There was another where a guy was making this beautiful waterfall scene. I think there are also tutorials on how to make your own hot wire foam cutting/carving tools.
 

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Evil Wizard
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Yes, I'd say that online resources for model railroading would be your best bet.

Another would be websites and/or YouTube videos re: making terrain for tabletop wargaming (e.g., WarHammer, etc.) or even dioramas for Dungeons & Dragons.

About 10 or 12 years ago, there was a guy who produced high-quality silicon molds for various architectural elements, but also had more general terrain tutorials. Name was Bruce Hirst and his website was, I think, HirstArts.com -- Don't know if it's still around though.

Edited: Yes, just checked. His website is still active.
 
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