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Old 12-13-2010, 03:49 PM   #1 (permalink)
 
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Default Does polymer clay shrink when baked?

I'm abut to embark to making a couple pens blank from clay and was wondering if this stuff shrinks any when baked.....

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Old 12-13-2010, 08:39 PM   #2 (permalink)
 
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yes, but only slightly. I think one of the PC gurus on the site said something along the lines of 1-2% once.
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Old 12-13-2010, 09:31 PM   #3 (permalink)
 
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I have made a bunch of the pc pens and shrinkage is not noticeable. Darth Toni will read this and be able to give better specifics.
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Old 12-13-2010, 09:40 PM   #4 (permalink)
 
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I never even consider the shrinkage when I use Polymer Clay if there is any I dont even notice it.

If you need any help feel free to contact me.
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Old 12-14-2010, 01:10 PM   #5 (permalink)
 
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I've never noticed shrinkage either. However, I don't bake the clay. I've found that boiling the clay in water is easier and has far less of a chance for discoloring the clay than baking does.
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Old 12-14-2010, 01:29 PM   #6 (permalink)
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigguyZ View Post
I've never noticed shrinkage either. However, I don't bake the clay. I've found that boiling the clay in water is easier and has far less of a chance for discoloring the clay than baking does.
Seriously??? I have NEVER tried that.. Explain if you dont mind.
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Old 12-14-2010, 02:47 PM   #7 (permalink)
 
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I've mentioned it once or twice before, but I read it on a website a while ago. Basically, the idea is to put the blanks so they're fully submerged in water. I use a plastic throw-away Glad container. Then nuke on high. As long as the water doesn't boil off and expose the raw PC, the temp will NEVER go above 100C (boiling). It's enough to polymerize the clay, but not enough to burn it.

Right out of the water it's crumbly, so you have to let it dry. But once they dry out they become much harder. I haven't done extensive testing, but in my limited experience it seems that the boiled PC is harder than the baked PC, but it's more brittle.

I've done this using solid blanks as well as wrapped tubes, with no problems either way. And unlike baking- where I've destroyed a fair amount of $$ worth of PC- it's dummy proof as long as you keep the blanks submerged in water.
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Old 12-14-2010, 02:58 PM   #8 (permalink)
 
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I remember you mentioning it, BUT I didnt know for sure if you have actually been doing it. I will have to try it one of these days!!
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Old 12-26-2010, 02:36 PM   #9 (permalink)
 
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I just recently made a PC pen and had an issue with it separating from the tube once on the lathe. My question is do you glue the PC to the tube prior to baking or do nothing?
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Old 12-26-2010, 03:30 PM   #10 (permalink)
 
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You really cant glue the pc to the tube before baking the clay is soft. It doesnt always happen with the tubes if it does just ca it back onto the tube. At least that is what I have done and others that it has happened to
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