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Reducing costs using PMC

Since Richard brought up experimentation with metal clay, I’ll add
my 2 cents worth.

I took an experimental enameling workshop a few years ago and in a
demo the instructor brushed some PMC slip as a final layer on a
fired enamel piece, then fired in a kiln for a few minutes at a
normal enameling temp. I think it was in a dot or line pattern. It
was a very nice silvery surface effect.

I’ll have to dig out my ancient PMC and try to reconstitute into
slip. PMC technique wasn’t for me but I’m glad I kept all those
little cubes of it.

Thanks Linda for all the helpful I am delighted to see
that I may have an easier job than expected. I opened the sealed
packet of one of the lumps and found that although it is hardened,
it is still soft enough for me to dent with my fingernail—but
still far too hardto use. So I am trying the suggestion made by
Jackie Truty that I put the piece in a sealable plastic bag along
with a few drops ofwater and a wet piece of newspaper. In fact, at
this moment they are in the bag, and I can see some of the metal
clay is beginning to soften, inthat the bag shows some gray film. I
pressed it, but it is still very firm, but a wee bit softer than it
was yesterday.

Hopefully the other packets are in the same. condition–firm, but
able to be dented. If not, I will crush them as you suggest.

Right now I am only going to do one packet at a time, convert it
into a piece of jewelry, then tackle the rest.

Thanks again to all of you for your help with this. Will keep you
posted as to how things progress, Alma

I’m another person with some dried out metal clay. I have the “Slow
Dry Silver Art Clay”. Do I need something besides distilled water to
reconstitute? Many thanks to all you metal clay experts!

Just follow the wonderful that was given to me for
reconstituting the metal clay. If you deleted the posts you can
lookthem up in the archives. I tried their method and to my delight
my hardened clay is now workable. I used regular water, but that is
because our water is so pure. It might be different in your area.
Fortunately mine had not reach the rock hard stage, but was still
soft enough that I could dent it with my fingernail, but too hard to
work with so I did not have to grind it or pulverize it. I merely
putit in a sealable plastic bag along with some wet newspaper, and
lo and behold, eventually it was soft enough to knead. However, the
paper did start to disintegrate and was in danger of merging with
the clay, but I got it out in time. I would suggest that if you use
this method, use a small wet sponge. Alma

Mary, The product that your instructor used on the enamel may have
been Overlay Silver Paste. It is specially formulated to be used on
glass, and other glazed items such as porcelain. I may be wrong but
I am not sure that regular metal clay will work. Hopefully, someone
who works with metal clay can give additional

I have a tiny jar of it that I bought years ago when I thought I
would be working with the Metal Clay. Never used it so it is all
hard andwill have to be reconstituted. The metal clay that I have is
Art Clay silver. I would imagine that PMC has a similar product.

Hi Alma,

The reason for the distilled water is that it doesn’t introduce
’stuff’ that might permit the growth of molds. The binders are
organic, so can support mold if given have a chance. Keeping the
clay body hydrated is an exercise in balance. not too hydrated. not
to warm. not too dry. etc. You are in the role of Goldilocks!!!

Linda Kaye-Moses

Thanks Linda for explaining why one should use distilled water. I
will pick up a bottle when I go to the store as I don’t want to have
to deal with ugly organisims moving into my slip jar or the
humidifier that I made to store the now reconstituted metal clay.

Hello Alma et al,

Chris Darway has taught a class on craftcast applying metal clays to
glass, a process he has been
using for many years. Chris’ take on the use of metal clay is
idiosyncratic and intriguing. He also teaches the Rio Grande PMC
Certification classes.

Linda Kaye-Moses

Thank you Linda – I have bookmarked that class of Chris’ to take in
the slow down period after the holiday work is done. Looks
intriguing! Barbara