Art Clay copper torch firing

February 4, 2018

Firing is how Art Clay turns into pure silver. This is where it all happens. Everything else you have done has been a prelude to this little bit of technological alchemy. No matter which method you use to fire Art Clay, the process is the same: burning the organic binders off and sintering the silver particles to increase strength. In the end, you have a piece of 99.9% fine silver, just 8-9 percent smaller and with all the fine detail and shape of the pre-fired piece.

If you have a gas stove in your kitchen or portable camping stove, this is the most convenient and inexpensive method of firing Art Clay Silver. All you need is a stainless steel net large enough to settle and balance the piece on the stove burners, a pair of tweezers, and a timer.

Firing Art Clay Silver with a gas stove uses a direct flame. This method works best for small and simple pieces. You can fire pure silver findings and small gemstones (5mm or under) with this method. Items that cannot be fired with this method include projects made using Cork Clay, paper, or large quantities of organic material, and projects that include glass, ceramic or porcelain. Using these instructions, you can fire Art Clay Silver Series creations. There is a size limitation for this method. You may fire creations that are no larger than 5.0cm (L) ×3.0cm (W) ×2.0cm (H), and weigh up to 30gm.

1. Firing on a Gas Stove

2. Gas Torch Firing

3. Kiln Firing

Clay Type

This type can be modeled in the same way as regular water-based clay. Once opened, it is susceptible to the air and must be kept moist in order to retain its pliability and workability. Use a container of water and a paintbrush to moisten any areas of the clay surface that begin to crack while working.

Paste Type

The only difference between Paste type and Clay type is the amount of water portion in the mixture.
Paste type comes in the consistency of melted ice cream and you should only transfer the amount needed from the jar to a small tray and dilute with water to create the desired thickness.
It is used in several ways:

  • As a glue to join two pieces of dry or wet clay together.
  • As a gap-filler for pits and cracks that appear in dried pieces.
  • To attach silver findings (screw eyes, bailbacks, brooch findings, etc.) to dried or wet clay pieces. During firing, the normal contraction of the clay bonds the findings.
  • When applied in separate layers onto organic forms such as leaves, dried flowers, paper-origami, etc, Paste type creates a perfect impression of the form.
Syringe Type

Art Clay Silver Syringe type is 5gm and 10gm of Art Clay Silver in a pre-loaded syringe. Syringe type comes packaged in three ways: with color-coded tips (blue, green and gray), each an increasingly larger diameter; a one tip (green nozzle) package; and packaged without any tips. Each of the tips is reusable and only needs to be purchased once. The diameter of each syringe nozzle is; Blue Nozzle: 0.41mm, Green Nozzle: 0.84mm, and Gray Nozzle: 1.19mm. The consistency of Syringe type is totally different from that of Paste type and it is not to be thought of as just paste in a syringe. Syringe type is thicker, more controllable and allows more workability. It is used in several ways:

  • To decorate pieces, much like using cake decorating tips. Lines, filigree, faux cloisonné borders, and even hollow balls can be made with Syringe type.
  • As a repair “glue” to fill cracks and gaps.
  • To attach findings to wet or dry clay pieces.
Overlay Silver Paste

This Art Clay product is specifically formulated to bond to non-porous or glazed surfaces such as ceramic, porcelain, and glass. Overlay Silver Paste can be used in a variety of ways:

  • Paint directly, full strength, onto bisque, glazed porcelain or glass pieces.
  • Used in a technique called sgraffito, whereby a thin layer of Overlay paste is applied to the glazed porcelain or glass, allowed to dry, and then a pointed tool is used to scratch a design into the layer so that the porcelain or glass beneath appears, giving a stenciled look. This product is fired at 650℃ / 1202˚F for 30 minutes.
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