Many Items Around The House Or Simple-To-Make Forms Will Work
What Can Be Used For A Good Hypertufa Mold?
You do not necessarily have to purchase a mold for your hypertufa project if it is a simple shape like a trough, round planter or even a rock that you wish to make. Many items found “around the house” can be used successfully.
Whether you are able to utilize them “as is”, or whether you have to do a bit of construction to build a form, it still isn’t a major undertaking in most instances to come up with a good sturdy useable mold.
Some of the “ready-made” hypertufa mold choices that are acceptable for most projects are:
- Cardboard boxes
- Styrofoam ice-chests
- Plastic containers of any shape
- Plastic garden planters
- Metal or terra cotta containers can be used
Unless you want the hypertufa stuck forever on your mold, you MUST line it with a plastic bag or coat it with a “release agent”. Please read: What Are Release Agents?
You can make your own molds with:
- Wood (screw the pieces together)
- Polystyrene foam used for house insulation
- Large sheets of styrofoam
For an easy to make reusable form: butt the edges of (4) pre-cut rigid foam sections; hold the edges together with bamboo or metal cooking skewers, or large nails; then wrap duct tape around the outside for added stability. Put this 4-sided form on a piece of plywood for a removable base.
You can dig a hole into the ground and pour the hypertufa into it to make stepping stones or small rocks. Some crafters line the “indention” in the ground with plastic, others don’t. It depends upon how smooth, etc. you want the finished stone to look. Please refer to: Garden Stepping Stones Project
Cut a sturdy ball (like a basketball or soccer ball) in half: fill each half with your hypertufa mixture and when it’s cured enough to remove from the two halves, you then join the halves together with additional hypertufa mixture.
For really LARGE troughs or planters: you’ll need two sturdy cardboard boxes, one which is smaller by apprx. 2 – 2-1/2 inches in dimensions all around than the other box. The smaller box fits inside the bigger box. Now you have a “gap” which you fill up with a ‘tufa mixture.
Then, to “shore up” the exterior sides of the outer (largest) box from bulging out when you pour in the hypertufa, you’ll need some very heavy items — such as cinder blocks — or pieces of lumber screwed together that fit snug and flush against the sides of the outer carton for support.
You will also have to use something to stop the inside box from caving in. Sand, potting soil or even more cinder blocks will work.
I hope this list, which certainly is not all inclusive, gives you a good idea of the types of things that can be used for molds. Please make sure to familiarize yourself with my other “how-to” articles to assure your success. Good luck with your hypertufa projects in the future!