Paste from PMC

Hello, How can I make a paste from precious metal clay? Or do I have
to buy it in paste form. I have the clay. Thank You. Christine

Hello, How can I make a paste from precious metal clay?  Or do I
have to buy it in paste form.  I have the clay

add water, preferably distilled- Anne

Normally you wind up with a PMC paste by saving your little cut-off
scraps in a baggy and adding a little water from time to time. If you
wanted to do it deliberately you could just add water, but it takes
several hours to really absorb it well. A spatula dental tool works
well to mix. There’s a great video by Tim McCreight available through
Rio Grande. Gary Strickland, GJG

It’s very simple to make a paste from PMC. Take a small piece of
PMC, using a small putty knife (you can get this at art supply
stores) add a few drops of water at a time and work the two materials
together until you have a paste which is the consistency you desire.
Rio sells PMC slip but it is cheaper to make your own. You can also
use any left over dried (but not fired) PMC scraps, pulvirize them
with the putty knife and add some water. Cover the mixture and wait
a day or two. You should have a paste or slip which is excellent to
use to join PMC pieces together. Slip can also be used in an extruder
to add interesting dimensions to your pieces. Good Luck and have
fun! Dawn

I am very curious about the precious metal clay. An earlier writer
mentioned clay, metal, and distilled water. Is there anyone out
there that knows something about the portions? What kind of clay? etc. thanks


I have tried to make my own PMC paste from a normal clump of PMC. I
put it in the syringe and it was not very successful. It was very
irregular and hard to work with as it was being pushed through the
syringe. The PMC paste that I bought from Rio Grande was a joy to work
with, so I would advise buying the paste from Rio. Does anyone else
have additional “info”?

Cathy Wheless

I have just started a PMC class and was told that you can make a
paste by just adding water to the PMC scraps. The consistency of the
paste is relative to the amount of water added. I don’t see much about
the use of PMC on this list and I would love to hear from others who
are working with the material. I am trying to incorporate the use of
glass into the clay medium. I am exited about the possibilities but
also aware of the difficulties I face regarding the heating and
cooling of the two diverse substances. Please, please respond to this
note. If your not comfortable to write on list, then contact me
off-list. glassbob

I just added water to my pmc over a two day period and kept it in an
air tight container. I mixed it every few hours and I made paste in a
few days.
Sincerely, Jennifer

I’m not sure what you mean by “paste” but wetting a piece and
pressing onto the join of the other piece before firing will usually
stick it and it will be adhered by the time it gets sintered. Taking
leftover PMC and putting it into a jar with a bit of water makes a
slurry that can be used as “paste” also.

Precious metal clay is a bit of a misnomer. There is no feldspar or
silica involved. . .no clay, as in clay dug from the ground. It is a
material the consistency of clay, which can be molded like clay, then
fired. The firing burns away the binding materials and fuses the
metal. I don’t know anyone who knows how to make this material
him/herself. Afraid you’ll have to buy it ready to use. It’s kind
of pricey too.

David L. Huffman

Precious Metal Clay, made by Mitsubishi Metals, is sold in this
country exclusively by Rio Grande. I would suggest that you go to You should get all your answers at that site
with lots of instructions. PMC is pure silver mixed with water and a
binder. After it is molded into whatever piece the maker wishes, it
is sintered in a kiln. The water and binder burn away, leaving pure
silver in the piece. It is great fun to work with and wonderful for
people who like almost instant gratification. Eve Welts at

Precious Metal Clay ™ is not something you can make up yourself.
It is a proprietary compound manufactured by Mitsubishi and available
through Rio Grande (and others). They combine extremely fine particles
of pure Gold, Silver or Platinum (in the several micron size range)
with water and a secret organic binder. It has the consistency of
ceramic clay and can be formed by all the common tools and technics.
When fired in a kiln it first loses its water, then the binder flames
and vaporizes away leaving the pure metal, but in a much harder and
lighter form (because of the porosity). It’s really great to play with
since you can create a piece of “art” very quickly, but it is a bit
pricey. An ounce of silver through Rio is roughly $30. Gary Strickland,

There is a second kind of “clay” of this medium called Art Clay. Call
Swest, 1 800 527-5057. They can put you on to the company tha makes it.

I am not an expert on PMC, however, I teach and distribute Art Clay
Silver and Art Clay Gold. Same type of stuff, only we think it’s
better!! The problem with working PMC with glass is the shrinkage
rate. We have good luck with Art Clay Silver since the shrinkage
rate is closer to 10% instead of 50%. This is because the silver
particles are between 1-20 microns in size in Art Clay Silver.
Supposedly, the PMC II is closer in composition but I haven’t worked
with that.

You can add water to the clay, and for the person who asked what kind
of clay, we mean the clay form of Art Clay Silver. I tend to mash it
up in the water in a small dish, or a film can works well. And the
consistency will be what you want it to be. If you make it too thin
at first, just leave the cap off the film can and it will evaporate
and thicken up. It’s different if your painting the slip on a leaf
for an impression than if you’re trying to “glue” two pieces of clay
together. The “glue” needs to be thicker. As for putting the clay
into a syringe, the problem comes in that it tends to dry out too
soon. Art Clay Silver comes in three different forms, Clay, Paste,
and Syringe. I have tried to convert the clay to syringe form, and I
had some luck with using an equal amount of olive oil and water, and
in an emergency, that works, but it’s not the same as the commercial
formula. Of course, that’s a closely guarded secret!

I have a small pin in my Art Clay Gallery made with dichroic glass
and silver. Check it out at There is
another example at the Art Clay website,

I really love being able to use the clay since I’m not a metalsmith.
It’s amazing what can be done with it!! If you have any other
questions, please go to my site and send an e-mail if you question
isn’t answered by the that’s there. Just imagine!! Kathie

Bob, you may want to ask the questions in other areas . . . (the official PMC Guild page - look at CONTACT and
find the discussion area. And If you cannot reach this
page via the address I have provided, write to: I’m sure Diane will provide detailed
instructions on how to join this group.

I am PMC Certified, but I have never used glass with it. I would
like to try that though, so any suggestions would be very much

Regards . . .

I use quite a bit of pmc, and have used all the forms plus Art Clay
Silver clay and paste. I have tried making paste from PMC, but have
not liked the results. I think it is just better to use it in the form
it comes in. By the way, the new PMC+ is very nice–doesn’t shrink as
much, and is quite dense–easier to solder. Fun stuff! --Noel, in
Evanston IL, where my cherries are almost ripe

It is my understanding that the “PASTE” form of PMC is going to be
discontinued. Making “slip” is easy. Put left over pieces of PMC into
an air tight jar, add a few drops of water and let it sit for a few
days. Results aren’t good if too much water is added.

The PMC in slip form has been discontinued by Rio Grande. It has
been replaced by the PMC+ in slip form. This is available in both
syringe form and in larger quantities in a jar so you can load your
own syringes. It works faster and better.

Phillip S.
Rio Grande