Other Nerd Stuff|Resin|Unisex|Upcycle

DIY Drinking Horn

Powder horn, pre-upcycle

This week I made a LARP craft for my one and only. <3 I made this drinking horn made from a replica powder horn! The powder horn makes an ideal starting point because it’s closer in size to a cup that we would drink from in the modern day than any antique horns on the market (my antique one holds less than half this one’s volume) and it comes with grooves already carved into the horn for leather carry straps.

1 powder horn ($16 on Amazon)
Food safe resin (Note: some people claim that all resin is food safe once fully cured if properly mixed. Your risk tolerance toward BPA is a call you have to make for yourself. The product I’ve linked is slightly costlier than some of its peers, but is approved by the FDA. If you’d like to go even cheaper, there are other resins on the market which are not approved. This article makes a few good points about reducing the amount of leechable BPA in your plastics.)
Kitchen and bathroom silicone caulking
1 drawer pull

Step 1: Strip.
Remove any leather, wood, or nails. If the leather strap is just right, save it to reattach at the end. I’m going to replace mine with vinyl.

Step 2: Sand.
Don’t overdo this. Your horn may already be thin-ish. This one was in a few places. But since powder horns are not for drinking from, you’ll probably find when you get the wooden plug off the top that it’s very rough and dirty inside. I gave it a few alternate rounds of sanding and then washing with water and dish detergent.


Step 3: Plug.
Find a drawer pull that suits your aesthetic and fits nicely into or around the tip of the horn. Apply a generous dollop of silicone caulking and then insert the drawer pull to form a plug. Clear caulking would be ideal for this, but in my demo I’ve used white to make it easier to photograph. Set this aside to firm up.

Step 4: Coat.
The goal here is to glaze the inside of the horn with a smooth, food-safe coating and, while we’re at it, to fill in cracks, crevasses and nail holes so that the horn is water tight. On the outside of the horn, masking tape the mouth of the horn, the place where the drawer pull meets the horn, and any thin or cracked surfaces. Mix an ounce or two of your resin according to its package directions. Pour into the horn and rotate, trying to coat every surface evenly. If you mixed too much, pour some back out or if it’s just a bit too much, let it pool in the tip of the horn to make the plug even more secure. Leave at least 24 hours to dry. Repeat this step if necessary.

Step 5: Pimp it.
Attach a new leather strap or decorate hover you like best. My husband plays a posh character who will care more about the look of the thing than about having carry straps, so I’ve used metallic permanent vinyl to create gold bands in the grooves where the original straps rested.┬áHorn can also be carved with wood carving tools, painted with acrylics, or you could even add metal, wood, or other decorative elements with crazy glue.

Morgaine Halpin

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