Thursday, July 4, 2013
How to use precious metal clay in jewelry making
Precious metal clay (brand names are PMC and Art Clay) is modern alchemy. PMC is a clay base with small pieces of silver suspended within it which, when heated, it burns the clay leaving a residue of solid silver. The base clay acts as a binder for the metal particles. Once this has been removed, the remaining silver particles bind together, giving the finished product. The real beauty of precious metal clay is that it can be manipulated like any ordinary clay, making it perfect for jewelry making. The modern precious metal clay can be using a jeweler's torch, as the cooking temperature is much lower than the earlier versions of this clay. However, a small oven will produce a temperature range much more constant and can be controlled accurately, which means that the results will be more consistent. Precious Metal Clay once had a bad reputation for the withdrawal, which makes it unsuitable for the job well or detail. Modern clay precious metals have a much lower rate of contraction (about 10-15%), but you still need to factor this into the final piece to make sure it really small details is not lost in the cooking process. Once fired, the piece of silver seems to be very sluggish and boring, so he will need to finish. The matte surface opaque hides the lower part of real beauty, so finishing and polishing will reveal the silver shining below. During the welding finished pieces of precious metal clay is essential to remember that the surface is more porous than standard silver, so it is best to rub the piece before welding. But because it is almost pure silver there is little risk of fire stain on the surface and the end result is almost indistinguishable from silver.
Since precious metal clay is a clay, takes impressions very well. A design can be pressed onto the surface of the clay and be revealed in the final piece of silver. Rollers fancy lace or leaves can also be used to create unique effects that are difficult to reproduce in ordinary silver unless it has been thrown. Precious Metal Clay is a popular way of making silver beads. The clay can be formed into beads, decorated with a pattern of the surface and then baked in an oven in quickly and easily, producing silver pearls of high quality. Security considerations are to be taken into consideration when working with precious metal clay because of the high temperatures needed to fire the clay. A small enamelling oven allows you to safely get the necessary temperatures for optimal results, but make sure you have all the proper equipment, such as pliers, with a heat-proof surface to work on heat-resistant handles to extract work from the oven and safely. Precious Metal Clay is an ideal medium to work in if you want to create pieces of silver jewelry that are unique to you. The only thing that limits you is your imagination. Silver precious metal clay is widely available from good suppliers of equipment for jewelry. There are two main brands - precious metal clay and Art Clay Silver. The clay is also available in other metals including gold, but the cost is significantly higher than the silver clay.