What is Phenolic Foam – Physical Characteristics and Unique Attributes

100% Plastic Deformation – The foam does not bounce back.  This attribute makes the foam great for the following applications; impressions, holding a shape and size, measuring an irregular shaped object.

The foams base chemistry makes this an ideal where flame retardancy is an important attribute.  Also, the foam typically chars and does not erupt into flames.  Below are two YouTube links that show a red hot nickel ball being placed onto phenolic based floral foam.

Phenolic based Floral Foam:

Dry: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n4jl7n9fpA4

Wet: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zv8l2r3czBs


Since the Phenolic based foam is lightweight and rigid, no specialty tools are required for carving and shaping.  The only items you need to carve floral foam are some standard off the shelf wood carving tools and of course your imagination.

Phenolic foam should have some drawbacks as a material.

Below are a few applications or characteristics that do not fit for phenolic foam.

Crush resistant padding: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pvczzlO4HKg

Terrible for floating on water: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RA2mRshPrp8

Dusty: The foam when it is cut / processed the dust gets all over.