Salvaging Architecture from Ground Zero NYC after 9/11

Constructed in 1924, The Verizon Building proudly stood in the shadows of The World Trade Center until September 11. When the Twin Towers collapsed, the Verizon Building sustained heavy damage including intricate hand-carved ornaments that adorned the building's exterior. Restoring these ornaments was a priority and designer/restoration pro, Bob Carpenter, was given the go-ahead with the expectation that the job would be done quickly.

Less Than Favorable Conditions: It was mid-October by the time support structures were in place and work could proceed safely. However, anyone who makes molds knows that cold weather will prevent most mold rubbers from curing. The outside temperature at Ground Zero in October was about 50°F/10°C during the day – colder at night. The temperature of the stone elements to which mold rubber would be applied was no more than 40°F/4°C. Mr. Carpenter tried a few mold products that did not cure in the cold. He then called Smooth-On and was turned onto PoYo® Mold Putty, a mix and apply-by-hand silicone.

With PoYo, there is no mess, no weight measuring, no mixing containers or sticks. Carpenter brought only the PoYo kit to the Verizon site with hopes that it would work – time was now short. He applied PoYo and within minutes had an exact mold negative of the positive ornament. The rubber was fully cured and strong. And the rubber released without any surface preparation. His next call was to Smooth-On to get enough PoYo to finish the job. In the end, 35 molds & support shells were completed in a short period of time – sizes ranged from 2'x3' to 6'x6'.