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Precious Metal Clay

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From: Connie (crobbins_brady_at_TeacherArtExchange)
Date: Mon Apr 07 2003 - 11:10:44 PDT


We had the opportunity to play with PMC clay at the Colo Art Ed Conf. last October. What fun~! It IS pricey, about $20 for an ounce of silver (gold, etc. is much more expensive yet) However, it actually only takes about 1/6 of an ounce to make a pendant for jewelry.

Although we fired the clay in a small jewelry kiln, I understand it can also be heated with a heat gun or gas torch. It needs about 600 degrees to melt off the clay portion, then it is 99 percent pure silver.

You heat it for about 6 minutes at 600 degrees, then it can be removed and imediately dropped into water to cool. We then cleaned it off with a wire brush. I also dipped my pendant into Liver of Sulfate (PU! use this stinky stuff outside!) which gave it more of an "antique silver" look.

There are several different varieties of PMC, each requiring different treatments and techniques. We liked the PMCplus best for our purposes.

http://www.pmcguild.com/ Guild for Precious Metal Clay artists

http://www.silver-clay.com/ Information about the different varieties of PMC

Connie

I would be interested to hear from anyone who has used PMC. I've been
looking at it since it first came out, but have yet to make the investment.
What stops me is the firing requirement. Can it be done in an enamel kiln?
Also, isn't it expensive.
I'm reorganizing my crafts curriculum and would appreciate anyone that has
experience with this medium. I love what I see in the magazines as to what
can be done with this. Is it practical in the classroom situation?

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