With the vast array of protective coatings available for 3D foam carving and cutting projects it can seem daunting to select the right material for your needs. As a general rule of thumb, there are five factors to consider when choosing a protective coating: the environment the final project is going to be in, the traffic and handling the project is going to be subject to, the texture of the finished project, the required fire rating for the project and the budget.
Environment: Where is the final project going to be situated? Will it be inside a climate-controlled building? Will it be outside? If outside, what sort of weather will it need to withstand? Heat, cold, humidity, strong wind, blizzards and fluctuating temperatures can cause havoc with protective coatings if the coating is not intended for that particular environment. When a coating fails it cracks, bubbles, peels and flakes. Depending on the size of the project, repairing or restoring it can bankrupt a shop. In order to avoid this, choose a protective coating for you 3D foam project that has been formulated to withstand the environmental pressures that project is going to face. Pure polyurea coatings are generally the best choice for extreme environments, and also for projects intended for long-term outdoor use. UV resistant and dimensionally stable in extreme heat and cold, polyurea coating are far less likely to break down in harsh environments.