Wednesday, December 12, 2007

12.12.07 A Microwave experience with Polymer clay - Chapter I

After my poor and lousy experience with polymer clay, I discovered last week that one can bake polymer clay in microwave, but of course not on dry - but covered with water, in a special microwave container. Garie Sim did a remarkable experience she shared with us in the following links and connected links:

At the beginning, I was quiet afraid to try - with all the toxic vapors that might come out and the recommendations not to use microwave for baking polymer clay, but my toaster-oven is so unreliable that I had no much choice - assuming I want to bake the polymer clay at home and not in the neighbor's oven.

Today I dared to make the experiment.

I made one bead with Cernit clay and Fimo clay. After 10 mn of baking in tap water on the max level in the microwave, the bead came out very strong - but also very dusty.

I thought it might be caused even because of an overcooking or because of the disgusting calcid tap water we have here in Rehovot, IL.

You can see the dark spots became grey:

I thought things were going to be OK - as on Garie page, if I do several more experiences to find the right conditions...

Regardless, I needed more polymer clay colours, so I went to our nearby craft shop to buy 3 more packages of polymer clay. I prefer to be constant with one brand - but I liked the yellow colour of another brand then Fimo - so I took it to try. It was made by Sculpey.

I did a new experience. This time, with only 5 mn cooking but with mineral water.

Here are the results:

As you can see, unfortunately, the Fimo behaves very badly, as already shown by Garie (after being overcooked), but this time I just think it is because of the water. I really believe the Fimo connects well with the calcium and becomes so dusty. Bad for me, I have about 8 Fimo packages...
The Cernit green bead was the first I touched and tried to break. Indeed it broke. Is it because of undercooking? Is it because it was so hard to work and the bead that was done wasn't enough agglomerated? However, the colour and texture was better this time as well as less dusty.
Finally , something good and surprising! The premo Sculpey bead came out P E R F E CT!!!
There is hope in all this experiment, although I have only one Sculpy colour :-( ...
Anyway, this is my first positive experience with polymer clay. Let's hope we become more friends in future.
The next experiment will be 5mn in the microwave with distill water over the Fimo polymer clay. I need to get some ddH2O.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I'm very interested in your experience boiling Premo in the microwave. I, too, have a very unreliable oven (half my bracelet burned today) and will try the boiling method. It's either boil my clay or buy a new toaster oven - and I won't do that until I'm convinced there is no other way to go!