Are you just beginning your new polymer clay hobby? Discover our beginner’s approach to baking polymer clay correctly. From precise baking times and temperatures to top tips and FAQs, we’ve got you covered. Continue reading for more information.
- You Only Have to Control 3 Things When You’re Baking Polymer Clay
- How Long Should I Bake Polymer Clay?
- How to Bake Polymer Clay ?
- The Best Way to Bake Polymer Clay
- Don’t underbake.
- How Do You Find the Correct Temperature?
- How Do You Know When Polymer Is Done Baking?
- How Long Do You Bake Polymer Clay?
- What Is The Best Method for Baking Polymer Clay Beads?
- Should You Be Baking Polymer Clay on Glass or Porcelain, or Ceramic Tile?
You Only Have to Control 3 Things When You’re Baking Polymer Clay
Baking Surfaces, Temperature, and Time
Manage them, and your oven will generate flawlessly cured items that are free of scorching, blistering, and brittleness.
The only method to cure overcooked clay is to cover it up or sand it off. Browning may be concealed by adding another layer and rebaking or painting over it. Be aware that sanding may not always be effective since the scorch might penetrate all the way through. So getting the baking correct the first time is critical.
How Long Should I Bake Polymer Clay?
It’s no surprise that many are perplexed by this one. Here’s what different polymer clay kits say regarding baking time:
- 30 minutes Fimo
- Pardo Art Clay: 30 minutes minimum
- Cernit takes around 30 minutes.
- Kato 10 minutes with polyclay
- Premo: 30 minutes for every 1/4 inch (6mm) of thickness
- Original Sculpey: 15 minutes per 1/4′′ (6mm) thickness
These are the very minimal durations to utilize, and the suggested 10 minutes for Kato is just incorrect. When polymer clay is cooked for longer than these minimal durations, it becomes substantially stronger. As long as the temperature is suitable, baking polymer clay for an extended period of time, even hours, will not burn or harm it. Unlike food, which will burn if overcooked, polymer clay will not burn if baked at the proper temperature. The limitation is that bright hues of polymer clay will deepen and brown when baked over prolonged periods of time. It doesn’t harm them, but it may easily destroy your look, particularly if you’re using light or transparent polymer clay.
I usually bake at least 45 minutes every 1/4′′ of thickness, and much longer for bigger portions. Do what works for you, not what a product recommends, for the best outcomes.
Are you unsure whether you cooked your piece long enough? Here’s how to detect whether your polymer clay has baked by testing its elasticity.
How to Bake Polymer Clay ?
Baking polymer clay in the oven isn’t as simple as it seems. The proper temperature, the right length of time – these are all important considerations when baking polymer clay.
If you’re looking for the best technique to bake polymer clay, you’ve come to the correct spot. I’ll guide you through every aspect of how to bake polymer clay for great results every time in this step-by-step lesson.
I’ll offer my methods and ideas for making sure your polymer clay creations are great every time! In addition, I’ve provided extensive directions for baking various sorts of polymer clay items, including clay earrings, at what temperature and for how long.
The Best Way to Bake Polymer Clay
An oven is the best technique to bake polymer clay. It is entirely safe to use your standard home oven. You do not need to purchase a separate clay oven or kiln.
If you don’t have a conventional home oven, a toaster oven will suffice. If you wish to utilize a toaster oven, find one that can maintain a consistent, exact temperature – we’ll go over this more below.
Gather your supplies and tools next. A baking sheet, aluminum foil, parchment paper, and an oven thermometer are all required. You will, of course, need your clay project.
Read the package direction to find out what temperature and time your brand recommends. Place the oven thermometer onto the center rack of the oven, and preheat your oven to the correct temperature.
When the oven has completed preheating, use the oven thermometer to check the temperature. Because every oven is different and most aren’t completely accurate, it’s a good idea to test the temperature before baking. Adjust the temperature if your oven is too hot or too cold. Wait for the oven to preheat once again.
Prepare your baking project. Use parchment paper to line a flat baking sheet. Place your product on the parchment paper with care. Cover the clay with aluminum foil that has been tented (or cover it with an upside-down baking pan).
Bake your clay for at least the specified period of time at the prescribed temperature. Polymer clay may be baked at 275F for roughly 30 minutes every 1/4 inch thickness.
However, for brand-specific information, always refer to the box instructions. (Here are some of my favorite polymer clay brands.)
I know that many individuals are terrified of overbaking their products because they don’t want to burn their clay. But don’t worry: if you use the right temperature (as measured by an oven thermometer), you won’t have any difficulties with burnt clay.
How Do You Find the Correct Temperature?
‘It ain’t rocket science, child!’ Albert may remark about baking polymer clay. Follow the instructions on the packaging. They will advise you on the proper temperature to use and how long to cook it for. Three exceptions exist:
- Is it possible that your transparent or light-colored clays are fading or scorching? Before baking, place some glazed ceramic tiles in your oven. To get them hot, pre-heat them for at least 15 minutes. When baking, place your pieces (and their holder, similar to a cookie sheet) on top of the ceramic tiles. They will retain heat and level out the temperature of the oven after you open the door to place your pieces.
- Get a good independent thermometer (or two) and keep a close eye on the oven temperature. At some time, it becomes too hot and begins to burn or brown the clay. Your oven may also be’spiking’ (keep reading down this list for more info on this).
- Try dunking your piece into ice water immediately after taking it out of the oven. This halts any additional curing from residual internal heat that may push the translucent over the edge from cured to yellowed. Do NOT do this if you have inclusions that may absorb water or if your piece is built upon a porous armature. Watch out for paper, cardboard or wood.
- Reduce the oven’s temperature by 10 degrees C (18 F degrees) and double the cooking time. Bake a testing sample and do a breakage test (see the Test Baking box below)
- Keep your pieces as far away from the heating elements as possible. Consider curing your pieces in your larger home oven inside an oven baking bag.
- High elevation baking If you are located at high altitudes (above 3,500 feet) You’ll need higher temperatures and a bit more time, just as if you were baking a cake. Add 5 degrees to the recommended temperature, and 10 extra minutes. If in doubt, test a sample.
- The temperature of your oven’spikes.’ Some ovens are constructed with a rapid heating cycle that uses a higher temperature than the dial setting to raise the average interior temperature up quickly once the door is opened. Unfortunately, when baking polymer clay, this might burn transparent or thin bits. This might be the issue if you find yourself burning projects while using a decent thermometer. Here’s what you should do. To bake on, place ceramic tiles in your oven. Preheat your oven to roughly 20 degrees lower than the manufacturer’s suggested temperature. After that, bake your piece for 10 minutes. Set the dial to the proper temperature when the 10 minutes are up. Start your stopwatch and bake for the customary amount of time.
How Do You Know When Polymer Is Done Baking?
When polyclay has properly cured, you may mark your cooled piece by pressing your fingernail into it, but your nail will not sink in. It will be tough to break, but it may bend quickly if it is thin. It will shatter or cut neatly without crumbling.
Of course, the first indication that you’re done baking polymer clay is when your kitchen timer goes off. But it won’t feel finished. When polymer is initially taken from the oven, it is fairly soft. To attain its ultimate hardness, it must be totally cooled.
How Long Do You Bake Polymer Clay?
Basic instructions may be found on the box. Then consider, “How thick is the thickest layer of unbaked clay?”
The baking time is determined by the depth of the raw polyclay layer. Measure the distance from the center to the surface of a bead.
If you’ve misplaced the packaging but recall the brand, use the table below to get the exact temperature and cooking hours. It contains Fimo baking directions as well as instructions for baking Sculpey in a toaster oven.
Oven baking times obtained straight from the manufacturer’s packaging are indicated in black letters in the chart. Others state: for every 1/4 inch (6mm) thickness. For manufacturers that do not provide precise baking directions for thicker layers, the orange type indicates an approximation. These firms publish something hazy about baking their polymer for longer to get bigger layers.
The general agreement in the claying world is to use 1/4 inch (6mm) as the’standard’ thickness and then multiply by that brand’s standard baking time unit for every multiple of the standard. It is advised that you bake a test sample beforehand to ensure that your piece does not burn or undercook. And…
When baking clay, NEVER leave your oven alone!
What Is The Best Method for Baking Polymer Clay Beads?
Before the polymerization process is complete, this material softens somewhat in the oven. If you bake on a hard surface, this might result in flat, gleaming areas. To maintain the desired shape, lay your beads on a surface that adapts to the bead or support it without resting it on a flat surface.
Alternate support methods for baking polymer projects are:
- Put them in a poly fiber fill ‘cloud’
- Lay them in a bowl filled with baking soda and partially cover them. After baking, clean with running water.
- Rest the beads on paper ‘troughs’ folded from white, matte finish cardstock
Should You Be Baking Polymer Clay on Glass or Porcelain, or Ceramic Tile?
Many individuals pre-heat a glazed (not terra cotta) tile before transferring their work to it for baking using a piece of plain white paper or matt finish cardstock, such as the back of an index card.
This does three things:
- The tile holds the heat, evening out the fluctuation caused by you opening the oven door. This is especially important if you’re baking in a smaller toaster oven.
- It prevents the shiny finish that will occur if you bake directly on the tile.
- It keeps your piece flat while curing.
Polymer clay is a colorful, moldable material that can be used to create all types of wonderful artwork, crafts, and DIY projects. The raw, liquid polymer clay comes packaged in plastic containers or sheets. It’s then baked in an oven at low heat for between 30 minutes and one hour until it turns into a hard molded material that can be painted, drilled, or combined with other materials. But first, the liquid polymer clay must be rolled out into thin layers before baking.