You don’t have to pull a reverse Little Mermaid to become a citizen of the ocean – you can just make your own mermaid tail. Instructables user ehamm goes over the process of making one from latex and warns that it takes a lot of time and around $500. On the upside, it’s designed so that you can swim in it. You need to start with a monofin and cover it with neoprene. It’s a thick fabric, so keep that in mind before you put it under your sewing machine’s needle. The next step is the scales, and she opted to go the easy route by punching holes out of craft foam with a sharpened pipe and hammer. When the scales are ready, she prepped them for molding:
The next part is to build a wall around your scales for the molding process. I used 2×4’s that I screwed into my wooden base, and then covered the edges with clay.
Once that’s done, you can pour ultracal into that box and let it set overnight.
By the end of it, you’ll VERY CAREFULLY flip your mold over and then peel out all those stickie circles. On some of the photos you can see where the plaster got underneath these scales. In the end, it was alright for me because there was still a definite scale in the plaster..
I would suggest filling in the gaps with clay if your scales are peeling up.
For making the fluke:
Trace your monofin onto the board you’ll be sculpting on, and then make sure to follow those lines. Ideally the sculpt will be exact on those lines, but leave about 1/4″ to 1/2″ give. If you’re making this out of latex, it will shrink, so you want it to be a bit wider than the monofin.
This is only half of the fluke, you’ll make two identical pulls of this and then glue them together with the monofin sandwiched in between.
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