Snickers Doodles new basking platform ๐Ÿ˜‹

xp29

BD.org Addict
Photo Comp Winner
Beardie name(s)
Zen , Ruby ,Snicker Doodles, Sweet Pea, Sinatra
I had so much fun building the castle I decided to build a new basking platform/hide for Snicker Doodles. It will be going in her habitat tonight when I get home from work. I waited till it was done this time to post pics, instead of blowing up the forum with updates lol. Let me know what ya think, likes, don't like, things that could be improved ect. My next project will be for Ruby, and then I'm going to make another castle for Sinatra (the 1st one had to big of a footprint ๐Ÿ‘ฃ, I had time to realize before it was finished he uses every bit of his new space and I didn't want to take it from him, so I'll make a smaller one for him) I'll post the pics in order from beginning to finished. I was shooting for something in the venue of Moab Utah.
 

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J4ckdaw-

Sub-Adult Member
Beardie name(s)
Leo
I had so much fun building the castle I decided to build a new basking platform/hide for Snicker Doodles. It will be going in her habitat tonight when I get home from work. I waited till it was done this time to post pics, instead of blowing up the forum with updates lol. Let me know what ya think, likes, don't like, things that could be improved ect. My next project will be for Ruby, and then I'm going to make another castle for Sinatra (the 1st one had to big of a footprint ๐Ÿ‘ฃ, I had time to realize before it was finished he uses every bit of his new space and I didn't want to take it from him, so I'll make a smaller one for him) I'll post the pics in order from beginning to finished. I was shooting for something in the venue of Moab Utah.
Looks great!
 

NickAVD

Juvie Member
Beardie name(s)
Foxy
It looks amazing!
When I opened the post, I thought, ok, now Iโ€™ll give some useful advice. But after looking at all the photos, I realized that everything was perfect and I had nothing to add. You did a great job! ๐Ÿคฉ
 

xp29

BD.org Addict
Photo Comp Winner
Original Poster
Beardie name(s)
Zen , Ruby ,Snicker Doodles, Sweet Pea, Sinatra
I think she is going to like it. She is checking everything out ๐Ÿ™‚
 

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NickAVD

Juvie Member
Beardie name(s)
Foxy
I'm very interested to know how you achieved the chipped stone effect on the foam. Was this done with a cutter?
And yet, I think many people on the forum have a question, what can you use to paint the decor? Could you tell me what each layer is for? I see that the platform was brown, then yellow, and then I lost count :ROFLMAO:
 

xp29

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Original Poster
Beardie name(s)
Zen , Ruby ,Snicker Doodles, Sweet Pea, Sinatra
I used an exacto knife that was just barely extended. Cut slices all across the face, then slice across that in a grid pattern. It isn't fussy. Then on small areas like the edges use your thumbnail to dig out chunks. On the larger area I used a pocket knife ๐Ÿ”ช and scraped it back and forth to speed things up. Then I used a variety of wire brushes to make it more random. Last some 120 grit sandpaper to soften the edges a bit. (Sandstone generally is weathered and more round than harder stones) For the strata I used a soldering iron and drug it across letting the barrel aslo make contact occasionally to widen the "cracks" in the layers.
I discovered that useing wood glue in the base works better than expanding foam. When I used the expanding foam it , well expanded making it hard to keep the desired height. It holds better so I used it on stuff that didnt change the dimensions.
The first coat that was kind of brown was a primer. The paint doesn't adhere well to the Styrofoam. The paint is acrylic, because its mostly non-toxic. (and won't melt the foam) Next was a full coat of cashew and burnt ummber mixed to the yellowish hue. I was trying to get close to a natural sandstone color for the base. From there i mixed yellow ochre and raw sienna for the redish bands. Some bright orange and raw sienna to add addition layers. Then dry brush a couple layers of the last two steps mixed at slightly different ratios so it would accent instead of just blending. After the acrylic is good and dry seal it all with some clear coat. The acrylic is water based, if you don't let it dry enough the clear coat smears it into a mess. I made that mistake with the moss on the castle ๐Ÿฐ I ended up with a green top and ramp lol. I had to go back and dry brush the grays back in to fix it. All in all these have been alot of fun.
Ruby is next, I think I'll do hers like banded ryolite ๐Ÿ˜‰๐Ÿ˜
 

xp29

BD.org Addict
Photo Comp Winner
Original Poster
Beardie name(s)
Zen , Ruby ,Snicker Doodles, Sweet Pea, Sinatra
It worked out great, in the end you didnโ€™t lose the area of the terrarium by making two floors.
Yup, I learned my lesson with the castle, I think I added a bit more usable space than I took away this time.
 

NickAVD

Juvie Member
Beardie name(s)
Foxy
I used an exacto knife that was just barely extended. Cut slices all across the face, then slice across that in a grid pattern. It isn't fussy. Then on small areas like the edges use your thumbnail to dig out chunks. On the larger area I used a pocket knife ๐Ÿ”ช and scraped it back and forth to speed things up. Then I used a variety of wire brushes to make it more random. Last some 120 grit sandpaper to soften the edges a bit. (Sandstone generally is weathered and more round than harder stones) For the strata I used a soldering iron and drug it across letting the barrel aslo make contact occasionally to widen the "cracks" in the layers.
I discovered that useing wood glue in the base works better than expanding foam. When I used the expanding foam it , well expanded making it hard to keep the desired height. It holds better so I used it on stuff that didnt change the dimensions.
The first coat that was kind of brown was a primer. The paint doesn't adhere well to the Styrofoam. The paint is acrylic, because its mostly non-toxic. (and won't melt the foam) Next was a full coat of cashew and burnt ummber mixed to the yellowish hue. I was trying to get close to a natural sandstone color for the base. From there i mixed yellow ochre and raw sienna for the redish bands. Some bright orange and raw sienna to add addition layers. Then dry brush a couple layers of the last two steps mixed at slightly different ratios so it would accent instead of just blending. After the acrylic is good and dry seal it all with some clear coat. The acrylic is water based, if you don't let it dry enough the clear coat smears it into a mess. I made that mistake with the moss on the castle ๐Ÿฐ I ended up with a green top and ramp lol. I had to go back and dry brush the grays back in to fix it. All in all these have been alot of fun.
Ruby is next, I think I'll do hers like banded ryolite ๐Ÿ˜‰๐Ÿ˜
Thank you! This is very valuable information. I think this post can be safely given as an answer to everyone who wants to make decor with their own hands!
 

xp29

BD.org Addict
Photo Comp Winner
Original Poster
Beardie name(s)
Zen , Ruby ,Snicker Doodles, Sweet Pea, Sinatra
Thank you! This is very valuable information. I think this post can be safely given as an answer to everyone who wants to make decor with their own hands!
Thank you ๐Ÿ™‚
 

Axil

Juvie Member
Beardie name(s)
Beebz
Woah that's a work of art. I believe you told me once you weren't gifted artistically... that was obviously a lie :p.

I love how you were able to give her so much space. Was it difficult to keep everything level with the relatively small "foot" you made? I know you mentioned the wood glue was helpful in that regard.

How did the texture turn out with the painted foam? Do you think she'll be able to scratch the surface with her nails or does the acrylic dry tough enough to prevent that?

The only advice I have is to take more pictures of Snickers modeling it! She looks very smug to have trained her hooman so well.
 

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