Saturday, January 26, 2013

Elephant restoration begins

I've begun the process of restoring my elephant by giving her a thorough wash.

She, hold on a minute, she doesn't have a name!

What about a face book "name the elephant" suggestions box?

Now that she's had a pressure wash to remove 21 years of grime it's time to repair a few areas of damage.

A large crack had developed over time which created a deep fissure from her left shoulder across to her right temporal lobe. I began by injecting some "space invader" foam from an aerosol can. This polyurethane foam fills and adheres as it cures. The foam expands many times its initial volume to overflowing the application area. Once cured it looks like fresh bread, it cuts extremely well with a fish knife. This done all that remains to be done is to fill in the cut away side of the body which I will do with more urethane foam.


You can just make out my repair above her right eye.


A rear view of her legs. I built this base to support her upper torso to allow zoo staff an easier time moving her from place to place.

I'm enjoying working around her again, she has quite a presence in our confined driveway space.

In this image you can clearly see the aluminium support armature in the form of an X. This welded, box section structure runs down each leg to the tang that protrudes from the base of each foot.
Here's another good view of the repaired crack on her head.

Torso and body are ready to be reunited, I have to wait for the lifting crane next week.

She seems to be enjoying the attention!



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