In September, 2010, I volunteered to build a float for a Halloween parade. The theme of the float was patriotic / historical, incorporating historical US flags and a replica of the Liberty Bell. For some time I had wanted to experiment with sculpting with extruded polystyrene (XPS) foam, so this project afforded the oppurtunity to consume scraps of 2" material had saved from my insulating-the-workshop project. At the time I built the replica, I wanted to encase it in fiberglass-reinforced polyester (FRP), but time did not permit. That had to wait until later.
I knew that I could deal with the vulnerable nature of the paper maché and joint compound exterior skin for one parade event. Unfortunately, over the subsequent months, handling and storage of the bell revealed that refinishing with FRP would be necessary and inevitable if I were to keep the bell useful. When I finally found the time to do this, it did not occur to me to take photos of the process. This was partially due to my fear of the resin setting before I was finished working with it (I generally don’t have an assistant). I also did not document making the crown, mounting hardware, yolk, supporting frame, and road case.