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Author Topic: Making silver clay  (Read 31443 times)
Guest
« on: January 31, 2006, 06:57:22 pm »

During the pass summer (more as a academic exercise), we have been experimenting with different types of particulate silver (e.g. particulate shapes and sizes) in combination with different types of known organic binders and organic moisture retardents. After a few different approaches we believe we have several forumulations which are close to ACS and PMC w.r.t firing temperature and burn times and usability. During this exercise we have found the following:

Both ACS and PMC have similiar formulations (there appear to be less than 5 ingredients which comprise both formulations).

Making your own silver clay is not difficult the ingredients are available commercially.

We have found that the sequence in which the materials are mixed in (and obvivously the ratios) and the method of mixing are the two critical issues which determine a sucessful and usable silver clay mixture.

It appears to be very cost effective to mix your own silver clay given the existing spot price for silver (about 9.20 per ounce). Even factoring the price for silver powder (which is usually purchased in .5 kg and  1 kg increments) and the rest of the ingredients it is still very cost effective.
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Luann Udell
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« Reply #1 on: February 02, 2006, 12:03:30 pm »

Are you going to share your recipes?
':cool:'
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Luann Udell
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Guest
« Reply #2 on: February 02, 2006, 10:29:50 pm »

Silver Powder
-particulate shape appears to work better in as spherical form, although flakes work as well. Particulate size should be less than 8 microns.
-powder is cost effective to purchase in 1kg increments (price drops to about $.60 per gram or less)

Polyolefin Powder
-this has a btu value and aids in the sintering process
-for those of you unfamiliar with this compound, this material is used in as house wraps and protective suits for printers (its also called tyvek)
-this compounds burns relatively cleanly with little or no ash

Peridur Powder
-This is basically a celluose product, it serves the same purpose as polyolefin powder
-combining Peridur and Polyolefin powder in a 1:1 ratio appears to aid the sintering process
-We suspect any simple cellulose powdered product would also work.

De-ionized Water (or double De-ionized water)
-water was be as pure as possible, otherwise the sintering process doesn't work properly due to the presense of mineral salts



Gycerin
-a 5 to 10% gycerin appears to work best, a greater concentration causes incomplete combustion (e.g. a alot of soot)
-functions as a moisture retardent
-we believe that other moisture retardents will work as well (e.g. polyethylene glycol ?) or better


Mixing

-Peridur/Polyolefin Powder must be put in the mixer first (we have a aerosol mixer for making paints but a household blender would probably work)
-Mixing the Peridur/Polyolefin Powder by itself gives it a static charge which helps adherence to the silver powder
-Add the silver powder in second
-De-ionized water/Glycerin is added next but must be atomized into the mixture (e.g. broken up into little droplets, a spray bottle would probably work) if not the mixture will clump with an inconsistent moisture content.
-90% to 95% Silver Powder/2% to 5% Peridur/Polyolefin Powder/5% to 8% Water/Glycerin
-Mixing Ratios depend on initial moisture content of silver, peridur and polyolefin powders (you will have play around with the ratios a bit).
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marym
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« Reply #3 on: February 03, 2006, 02:36:44 pm »

Wow- ask and yea shall receive!  '<img'> MixMaster you are welcome to come to my kitchen and do this for me.  See, I failed chemistry, um... twice.  I was GREAT in Biology though- give me a stick and a leaf and I can tell you EXACTLY what tree they came from.  


For everyone else like myself you CAN just buy some Art Clay Silver.  

-But thanks for the recipe!
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**Mary Tafuri**
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« Reply #4 on: February 03, 2006, 05:44:20 pm »

thanks marym. there are only two powders to mix (silver powder with polyolefin/peridur) then add some liquid (water/glycerin). not much in the way of complex chemistry I'm afraid. by the way it appears to mix in a normal blender (tried it yesterday). anyway this is probably more for the diy (do it yourselfers) crowd or maybe rings and things and make and brand their own silver clay (which I would buy  '<img'> ).
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Russ Nobbs
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« Reply #5 on: March 05, 2006, 07:00:25 am »

Thanks, mix-master, for coming over here with this thread. We've been following it in the Bead and Button forum. Very interesting stuff!
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Russ Nobbs
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« Reply #6 on: March 14, 2006, 01:52:34 pm »

Mixmaster,
This is Kurt - the metalman, one of the moderators for the ACS forum here.
I have just read through some of the 'problematic' postings on other forums.
I would like to invite the conversation to continue here. If the yahoo group moniter would post addresses here that would be welcome as well.
Hoping to hear from you.
If it would be of assistance - I am extremely knowegable in art tech and materials and would welcome private contact from you if I can be of assistance or do some testing for you.
1 800-366-2156, ext 120, I would be happy to speak with you or call you back at your convenience
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Metalman
AKA: Kurt Madison
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« Reply #7 on: March 17, 2006, 04:50:37 pm »

If anyone is interested in this discussion from the Metal Clay Gallery Yahoo group, you may search the archives.
Here's a link to the group:

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/MetalClay/

Gina
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« Reply #8 on: March 19, 2006, 08:38:39 am »

I made it over here - thanks for posting the link on the B & B forum.  I do love to play with metal clay, and am hoping this all works out!!  Thanks for your expertise Mixmaster!!
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Guest
« Reply #9 on: March 19, 2006, 12:04:55 pm »

To Mixmaster:Regarding making silver clay, who are the relevant suppliers of the necessary materials? As a potter, I'm always happy to mix rather than buy. Sometimes it costs me more, usually less. How much stiffening up after the mix sits alittle have you found? what consistency should it be at first, if it stiffens up?
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Guest
« Reply #10 on: March 19, 2006, 07:39:38 pm »


(Guest @ Mar. 17 2006,15:50)
QUOTE
If anyone is interested in this discussion from the Metal Clay Gallery Yahoo group, you may search the archives.
Here's a link to the group:

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/MetalClay/

Gina
MCG Moderator

Gina... I joined the yahoo group..but could not find the thread on mixing metal clay... what is the subject line for that thread?
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Guest
« Reply #11 on: March 28, 2006, 06:42:22 am »

Hi Mixmaster,
  I, too, would love to know where to get  supplies to make my own metal clay.  It's got to be less expensive!  I've just started working in ACS and I love it, but it's pricey!  I've been a beader for a yr and a half, and I thought THAT was an expensive hobby!
   Thanks so much...
                                    Stacy
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Guest
« Reply #12 on: February 03, 2007, 09:11:30 am »

Hi,

I have just seen this thread (I'm a new member). Did anyone try using this recipe yet? Where can I get the ingredients? I can't see silver powder anywhere online.

Thanks,
Gina
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picturejewelry.com
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« Reply #13 on: April 13, 2010, 02:50:47 pm »

Is thier any pic's available with piece's made from recipes?
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Metalman
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« Reply #14 on: April 16, 2010, 08:55:44 am »

There are no pictures.
Shortly after these discussions in 2006 - we stopped hearing from "MixMaster"
As for supplies - you can find these materials but you have to dig in the industrial particulate supply industry - the last I saw was silver particulate by the pound - it was expensive.
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Metalman
AKA: Kurt Madison
Master Instructor Emeritus - Art Clay Silver
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