Frequently Asked Questions
What is Silver Metal Clay?
Metal Clay is a pure metal powder combined with non toxic organic binder and water. When kiln or torch fired, the binder burns away, leaving pure, 99.9% fine silver. Metal Clay combines well with a variety of media, glass, ceramics, stones and polymer clay. Raw Metal Clay can be rolled, sculpted and shaped easily with fingers and other simple tools. When it is dry it can be sanded, filed, engraved, drilled and pre polished. Once it has been fired it is pure silver and can be treated like any other pure silver. Metal Clay shrinkage rates vary. It is a good idea to check the shrinkage rate of the product before beginning a project, so the shrinkage rate can be taken into account. Metal Clay comes in a variety of products.
How do I mark my silver metal clay work?
All metal clay is fine silver after firing and can be marked accordingly. The preferred designation is .999 which means 99.9% pure. This is the same designation as pure gold. When we write about the precious metals, we use the terms, Au 999 for gold and Ag 999 for silver. To stamp a metal clay piece after firing, a metal stamp is needed and that can be expensive. However if you stamp or carve the numbers, before firing, you can use a plastic stamp or scriber.
Why can't I make my own syringe type silver metal clay?
To make your own syringe type version of metal clay you need to thin the clay with a lot of water. The mixture will exit the nozzle but the line will sag because the material is so diluted. The results will be worthless and disaponiting. Metal clay scientists reformulated a metal clay version suitable for the syringe and it is pre-loaded and ready to use.
How is Silver and Gold Metal Clay manufactured?
Metal Clay is a recycled product manufactured by Mitsubishi Material Corp and Aida Chemical Industries in Japan. These companies recycle and reclaim a variety of different metals. The silver and gold comes from many different recycled sources including film stock and negatives.
What are the basic steps when working with Silver Metal Clay?
Shape the raw clay. Dry it completely. Finish and smooth the piece with sandpaper and files. Fire, sand and polish. The piece is now pure silver or gold and can be soldered, drilled, enamelled and so on.
How can I get started with Silver Metal Clay?
You can start a project yourself with a starter kit
or with the help of any of the great books
with step by step instructions. Alternatively you can take an Introductory Class where you will be shown the correct basic techniques for working with and firing Metal Clay. Metal Clay offers classes from Introductory to Advanced. See the workshops
page and register your interest in a Metal Clay or Polymer Clay workshop.
I would like a Basic List of Tools and Supplies needed to start working with Metal Clay. Is there a list available that will help me decide with what I need?
Yes there is. We have compiled a list which makes it easy to work out what you need and what you may already have that can be used with Metal Clay.
Please visit the Information Sheet Page
and look for the Information Sheet titled "Basic Metal Clay Tools and Supplies - Starting Out with Metal Clay"
Are there workshops available in all States?
Most states now offer metal clay and polymer clay workshops. If you are interested in doing a workshop click on this link Workshop Enquiries
- Please leave your contact details and the State where you live and we will endeavour to put you in contact with an instructor/s in your area.
Is there any Information available on working with BRONZclay and the NEW FASTFire BRONZclay?
Yes there is! There are improvements in various techniques being discovered regularly - we try to keep information current. Please download and print off all of the latest available BRONZclay and FASTFire BRONZclay information - Click on information sheets
Is it true that the NEW Art Clay Copper fires in 30 minutes and does not need to be fired in Activated Carbon?
Yes it is! Art Clay Copper is very quick firing and can be placed on a kiln shelf and fired in the same way as Silver Metal Clay
Can Art Clay Copper be fired with a Butane Torch?
Yes it can! Early testing has shown amazing results when firing Art Clay Copper using a butane torch. We have a new information sheet
that can be printed out
Is there a User Guide that can be printed out for Art Clay Copper?
Yes there is! Please click on the following link to the Information Sheets
What can I make with Makin's Clay?
There are any number of things that can be made using Makins Air Dry Clay. Visit the Makin's Gallery to see some of the amazing and creative work being done with Makin's products or alternatively
for ideas and inspiration.
Are there any tips and techniques for using Makin's Clay?
Yes there are! Click on Tips and Techniques.
Are there any instructions to help me put the Super Slicer with Comfort Handles together?
Yes there are! Click on Information Sheets