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TurtleBay Jewelry
04-01-2004, 04:19 PM
Anyone here work with this? I'm really interested in getting into it, but have no idea what it entails.

~D.

beclectic
04-01-2004, 04:28 PM
Anyone here work with this? I'm really interested in getting into it, but have no idea what it entails.

~D.
I am working toward it but I can't afford the material yet. I've researched it a lot. For small pieces you just need a torch to burn off the clay but for bigger pieces you need a kiln. I'll look up my links tonight and post some of them if someone else doesn't do it first. I think it's where I want to go with my jewelry. The potential is vast.

beadyeyedgirls
04-01-2004, 04:31 PM
i'm waiting on a kit that i ordered...pmc3 stuff with a hot pot. can't spring for a kiln yet, though i eventually want one for when i can do pmc & set up my torch & lampwork. but the hot pot is used for firing pmc3 & it's not that expensive. i am SO fascinated by the possibilities i see for this!! :D

beclectic
04-01-2004, 04:50 PM
i'm waiting on a kit that i ordered...pmc3 stuff with a hot pot. can't spring for a kiln yet, though i eventually want one for when i can do pmc & set up my torch & lampwork. but the hot pot is used for firing pmc3 & it's not that expensive. i am SO fascinated by the possibilities i see for this!! :D
Same here on the possibilities. I have a kiln but the PMC itself, well I'm trying to get my lampworking studio set up and I just can't do it all at once. Darn! :(

DrPam
04-01-2004, 04:50 PM
Can you solder PMC components to sterling components? For example, could you make some shmancy little designs in PMC and then solder them to a sterling ring? Are they compatible?

-Pam
http://www.pamarama.com

DrPam
04-01-2004, 05:07 PM
In trying to answer my own question, I came across this site (http://www.silversmithing.com/1clay.htm) that ROCKS!! Tons of good PMC info here.

-Pam
http://www.pamarama.com

TurtleBay Jewelry
04-01-2004, 05:17 PM
/cry!

One more thing I wanna do that I can't afford a kiln for.../sniffle

Do ppl sell used kilns anywhere?

~Danielle

beclectic
04-01-2004, 06:13 PM
/cry!

One more thing I wanna do that I can't afford a kiln for.../sniffle

Do ppl sell used kilns anywhere?

~Danielle

e-Bay!!!

That's where I got mine. I saved about $100 dollars but they go fast.

Do your research. Decide what features you have to have. Then look up each possibility, and decide what you would be willing to pay for it. Remember to add in shipping cost. Sometimes ebay sellers have high shipping charges and it varies from seller to seller.

The Swap Forum here on WC also sometimes has used kilns.

beclectic
04-01-2004, 06:16 PM
Can you solder PMC components to sterling components? For example, could you make some shmancy little designs in PMC and then solder them to a sterling ring? Are they compatible?

-Pam
http://www.pamarama.com

Once it is fired it is Sterling Silver. There is shrinkage depending on which PMC product you use. I think the one with the least shrinkage has 10%. That is still significant and you have to allow for it.

beclectic
04-01-2004, 07:01 PM
Here are some links.

PMC General Information (http://www.metalclay.com/OtherPages/ProductInfo.htm).

A Project (http://www.pmcsupply.com/how.html).

How to Use. (http://64.55.42.241/PMC/use.htm)
More How-tos. (http://www.silver-clay.com/)

Resource Guide (http://www.pmclay.com/resframes.html).
This site has a Getting Started Booklet to download to Adobe Reader

Hope this helps.
*************************

OK, so I went a little crazy on this topic. :evil: 3 posts in a row. :rolleyes: I'd stick them together and delete 2 if I could figure out how but I can't figure out how to delete a post so I guess we are all stuck with my 3 posts. I'll be better in the future, I promise. :o

Emjay
04-01-2004, 09:27 PM
Yes, I've taken a beginner class, and played with it at a Kate McKinnon workshop. Just made some small charms and a button or two. VERY cool stuff. I just don't have the time to do PMC, wire, and lampwork. I still intend to do some more pieces with it when I have time.
Jean

WV.Artistry
04-01-2004, 10:08 PM
I work with it and I love it!!

It's so open to design and has a sort of immediate gratification :)

Kathy

beadyeyedgirls
04-01-2004, 10:23 PM
In trying to answer my own question, I came across this site (http://www.silversmithing.com/1clay.htm) that ROCKS!! Tons of good PMC info here.

thanks for posting that!

TurtleBay Jewelry
04-01-2004, 10:32 PM
Ok, this may be a really dumb question, but I'm going to ask anyway since I don't know.

The kilns that lampworkers use to anneal their beads, can you use the same kind to fire this PMC stuff? Or do you need two dif't types of kilns?

I'd rather just have to fork out the dough for one kiln that does all jobs versus 3 kilns for various mediums.

I'd like to get into ceramic beads as well one day, soooooooo...

~D, who wants to expand in too many diff't directions all at once.

LOL.

LLane
04-01-2004, 10:33 PM
I did my certification in PMC last May in Dallas. Product is expensive.... especially to just buy without having the certification discount. The torch firing works best on PMC3 as it takes less time to fire (so don't have to hold the torch so long!) I use my kiln for firing. There are 3 types.... each shrink and fire at different temps. There are also several products along with the clay there is paper, paste (slip) and syringe. I really enjoy working this product but have not done as much as I would like... seems like I just can't get enough time in a block!!!! I have made charms and pendants with cabachons. I really like making funky beads to go in my designs. Here is a pic of some of the first PMC beads I made to go with my lampwork. (on either side of focal) Another great resource is PMC Guild (http://www.pmcguild.com/galframes.html) They have a forum there that is very helpful and lots of good resources!

Good luck.... if I can help.... just shout.
Lois

LLane
04-01-2004, 10:37 PM
The kilns that lampworkers use to anneal their beads, can you use the same kind to fire this PMC stuff? Or do you need two dif't types of kilns?.
Danielle,
Just saw your post.... I use the same kiln with no issues. I have a Paragon kiln with a digital controller which helps alot as you need to be sure of the temp so that the silver sinters properly.

Good luck!
Lois

TurtleBay Jewelry
04-01-2004, 11:14 PM
Ok, so is it better to have a kiln with a digital controller?

I'm so lost on this kiln stuff, it's not even funny. LOL.

But I wanna' learn!

~D.

TurtleBay Jewelry
04-01-2004, 11:20 PM
Ok, and the next question...are these kilns that say jewelers kiln, ceramics kiln, etc, are they all basically the same thing? Or should I look for certain types?

I'm browsing the 'bay, there's a thousand diff't kinds listed. /snort

I'm so hokey. I need to worry about getting a kiln like I need a hole in the head. LOL.

~D.

mjcall
04-02-2004, 07:22 AM
Danielle

Lamp Workers use several different types of kilns. The differences are primarily size and maximum temperature capabilities. At the low end they are called Annealers , generally small capacity and a maximum operating temperature of around 1100 F. Many of them are built in a large rural mailbox or a metal toolbox and insulated with ceramic fiber. While these kilns will work for annealing soft glass beads they donít have a high enough temperature capability to fire anything except the PMC3.

The next class of kiln would be annealers using firebrick as their insulating material. Still small in capacity and usually have a bead door to allow access without opening the main door. While there are differences from brand to brand, firebrick kilns generally have higher temperature capabilities. These kilns could be used for bead annealing, glass fusing, copper enameling, cloisonnť,, PMC or even small ceramic items. Their size is the main limitation.

From there you move into the larger firebrick units most of which were originally designed for use by ceramists or glass artists. As your kilns get larger in capacity there are trade offs. Larger kilns give you more versatility in what can be done with them, but they are slower to heat up and more expensive to buy and run. Larger kilns are also not as handy to use for annealing beads because of access problems.

My kiln is a unit I bought many years ago for burning out investment castings. It is a front loader and midsized. It will fire to in excess of 2000 F and was designed as a small ceramic kiln. While the front loading door isnít as handy as a bead door, I really donít find it difficult to use.

With regard to controllers a basic kiln comes with an infinitely variable set point controller. Basically you vary the temperature by watching your readout and fiddling with the dial. A real pain in the backside for annealing because you end up baby sitting your kiln for the entire annealing cycle, several hours. Because PMC has a relatively short firing cycle it probably wouldnít be much of a problem. I used mine that way to burnout investment for years and had no problems. Of course that was before I had as many senior moments as I do now. :confused: Digital controllers nice but they add several hundred dollars to the cost of a kiln. I recently built myself a digital controller for just over $200 and I am loving it.

If you feel you canít live without a digital controller I would suggest you buy a basic kiln and the controller as a separate unit. Digital controllers have a history of problems. If your controller is built into your kiln and it breaks down you have to ship kiln and all off for service. Besides being expensive and difficult to ship you are without your kiln for an extended period of time. :crying: If your controller is a separate unit that you just plug the kiln into, you can still use the kiln by falling back to manual control.

More than you ever wanted to know about kilns. :)

M_

beclectic
04-02-2004, 07:46 AM
Ok, and the next question...are these kilns that say jewelers kiln, ceramics kiln, etc, are they all basically the same thing? Or should I look for certain types?

I'm browsing the 'bay, there's a thousand diff't kinds listed. /snort

I'm so hokey. I need to worry about getting a kiln like I need a hole in the head. LOL.

~D.

PMC requires that a kiln be able to get hotter than is required to anneal soft glass. If you look at the 'General Information' link that I posted you will see that if you are considering working in PMC Gold you will need a kiln that fires up to 1830 degrees F for silver you don't need it as hot and you can increase the time to make up for a lower temp. There is a chart at the 'General Information' link. 1830 degrees F is pretty high. If you are considering a kiln for Lampwork it is best to buy a kiln that has a bead ring or that you can add a bead ring to later. Since I didn't have a lot of money I bought the little Paragon Quick Fire Kiln. You can buy a bead ring to go with it. It is not digitally controlled, it is designed to just plug in reach the temp. you watch for on the temp. guage and then unplug. I bought an infinate switch which lets me adjust the temp. by hand. It is a small kiln but it can reach 2000 degrees F fairly quickly. Eventually, I plan to add a digital controller to it. I figured out how to do it and where to buy the parts. The nice thing about buying a kiln that is good for both Lampwork and PMC is that then you have a kiln that you can use for glass fusing too.

A new kiln is going to cost more than a used one. I got a used one that hadn't been used but maybe once or twice but I paid about $100 less for it. The person's description wasn't very good so most people didn't bid on it but I knew what the kiln was so I did. That's your edge, know about the kiln, look it up online and find out everything you can about it. Know what type you want, which kilns fit your needs and then look for a seller that has a low price and don't let a bidding war start. Use a sniper and let it bid at the last minute.

eBay Search Hint: You can enter more than one word in the search argument. Put a + between the words and you will only get the items that have both words in it. For instance I used the search arguments 'kiln+PMC' and 'kiln+bead' (without the quotes) to find only those kilns that were the types I was looking for and not some 4 foot tall low temp. ceramic kiln.

mjcall
04-02-2004, 08:05 AM
Eventually, I plan to add a digital controller to it. I figured out how to do it and where to buy the parts.


Barbara

I just finished mine, if I can be of any help PM me. I might some addition links that could help. It wasn't a difficult project once I truely understood what was going on. I did a lot of research but it only took me about 4 hours to put it together.

M_

Rosie2000
04-02-2004, 09:40 AM
Good Morning from the beautiful Oregon Coast. My mom is doing PMC. She is 76 years old and has always had the dream to work in silver. Unfortunately the time was never right. THEN pmc came into being. She is using PMC3, in clay form, paste form and syringe. She finally bit the bullet and got the small paragon kiln with digital controller. We have set up a wholesale account and are currently buying the clay and bought the kiln at www.aaproducts.com There are different firing temps for the clay, the clay with glass, the clay with stones, the clay with cork, and on and on so if you do not want to be a kiln sitter the digital controller is important. To say the least she is possessed.

We have four shows this year and she will be selling her designs. I am also looking at setting her up on Ruby Lane to sell. Her prices are incredibly low. She tends to design big and there is a lot of silver in each piece. I am leaning towards marketing her collection as wholesale due to her pricing which she is comfortable with :) You can see her pmc collection in the signature link below My Mom and me. I am learning alot from her and will be incorporating PMC with my lampwork and fused work at some point in time. Thanks to all for the new pmc links. Will give them to my mom. Rosie

Emjay
04-02-2004, 10:58 AM
Your mother's work is FABULOUS!! :clap: :clap: :clap: :eek:

beadyeyedgirls
04-02-2004, 11:38 AM
Danielle

Larger kilns are also not as handy to use for annealing beads because of access problems.

My kiln is a unit I bought many years ago for burning out investment castings. ... While the front loading door isnít as handy as a bead door, I really donít find it difficult to use.

I would suggest you buy a basic kiln and the controller as a separate unit. Digital controllers have a history of problems. If your controller is built into your kiln and it breaks down you have to ship kiln and all off for service. Besides being expensive and difficult to ship you are without your kiln for an extended period of time. :crying: If your controller is a separate unit that you just plug the kiln into, you can still use the kiln by falling back to manual control.


question...when you all talk about bead doors & ease of access, is that b/c you're putting the beads into the kiln straight from the torch? so you keep adding them as you go? cuz i'm thinking that what i'll do is batch anneal if i ever get set up. stick 'em in vermiculite from the torch, then anneal later.

& great tip about the separate controller, thanks!

mjcall
04-02-2004, 12:05 PM
question...when you all talk about bead doors & ease of access, is that b/c you're putting the beads into the kiln straight from the torch? so you keep adding them as you go? cuz i'm thinking that what i'll do is batch anneal if i ever get set up. stick 'em in vermiculite from the torch, then anneal later.

& great tip about the separate controller, thanks!

Jessica

The answer to your question is yes, straight from the torch to the kiln. The bead door is a convenience not a necessity. As I stated early I have a front loading kiln and I get along just fine. I use a long pair of pliers to deposit the bead mandrel and all into the hot kiln. Some ppl are sensitive to heat and have to put gloves on to do this. The bead door has another advantage as it allows you to preheat your glass rods prior to introducing them into the torch flame. Some glass is very shocky and tends to act up by exploding when first exposed to the direct flame. Preheating them helps a lot. To date I havenít felt the need to preheat, but if I should, I will use a hot plate instead of my kiln.

Batch annealing works well for small to medium sized beads, I did it for quite awhile before building my controller. If you want to get into larger beads, ĺĒ and up or sculptural beads you will probably find that your loss due to cooling stress is unacceptable. Especially since you tend to get a lot more time invested into these beads.

M_

DrPam
04-02-2004, 02:50 PM
Once it is fired it is Sterling Silver. There is shrinkage depending on which PMC product you use. I think the one with the least shrinkage has 10%. That is still significant and you have to allow for it.

My understanding is that, after fired, PMC becomes fine silver wire, not Sterling. Is that right? And this may be a dumb question, but can Sterling and fine silver be soldered together?

-Pam
http://www.pamarama.com

froggee501
04-02-2004, 02:55 PM
My understanding is that, after fired, PMC becomes fine silver wire, not Sterling. Is that right? And this may be a dumb question, but can Sterling and fine silver be soldered together?

-Pam
http://www.pamarama.com

I'm pretty sure that it does turn into Fine Silver, although only wire if you roll it into one. :) And yes, you can solder sterling and fine silver together, along with brass, copper, gold, nugold, etc.

beclectic
04-02-2004, 03:08 PM
My understanding is that, after fired, PMC becomes fine silver wire, not Sterling. Is that right? And this may be a dumb question, but can Sterling and fine silver be soldered together?

-Pam
http://www.pamarama.com

There are no dumb questions. :)

Sterling means that silver is 92.5% silver. Fine means that the product is 99.9% silver. You are right I misused the term Sterling. So the PMC becomes Fine silver not fine silver wire unless you have formed it into a wire. Can you solder 92.5% silver to 99.9% silver? Yes you can.

BTW, 90% silver is called Coin silver. You could solder that into the other 2 as well.

dockhl
04-02-2004, 03:25 PM
Hi everyone~

Thought I'd jump in here since I teach PMC classes and might be able to clear things up a little. PMC is FINE silver, not sterling...can be soldered just like anything else. You can use your lampworking kiln, esp with PMC3 since it can fire as low as 1110', so you can also use it with glass. You want to make sure that your kiln distributes the heat fairly well, no hot spots...this may be why a lot of the pMC kilns are pretty small. You can use a hot pot, torch and even fire on the stove top.

It is great stuff, altho fairly expensive. I have some resource lists that I give to my students that I'd be happy to send to anyone who wants them....just email me. (They are in Word format).

The best thing you can do is take a class. It helps you learn how to handle the material. Some people also like making their design first in polymer clay and then in PMC.

Best~
Kathy

beclectic
04-02-2004, 09:11 PM
There is another type of clay that fires to fine silver. It is called Art Clay Silver. Art Clay Silver 650 is a low firing product and has 7%-9% shrinkage. It is also a little cheaper. They also have Art Clay Gold.

Here are some links to places that sell the product and have information and instructions.

http://www.art-clay.com/?source=overture

http://www.pinzart.com/index.html

http://www.artclayworld.com/

https://www.rings-things.com/cgi-bin/hazel/hazel.cgi

Charlee
04-03-2004, 08:26 AM
This may be redundant, but there's a real good Yahoo list about PMC/Art Clay and such: Metal Clay Gallery (http://groups.yahoo.com/group/metalclay/)

I haven't worked with it yet, but am awaiting an order of PMC3. I got clay, paste & syringe, so we'll see what kind of mess I can make. I don't have a kiln, but will take my stuff to the local glass arteest for firing. She has a stained glass studio/lampworking torch/bead store/retail jewelry place all in a cool old house near downtown and has offered me torch time on her Minor til I can get my own. Cool, no? :D

debkauz
04-05-2004, 04:57 PM
In terms of a kiln, in the class I took I was told to be careful of a large kiln as the temps and not always totally even in the kiln. You don't one of your pieces being in a colder spot in the kiln because it will not scinter properly.
For more info try www.pmcguild.com. They have a lot of info as well as www.artclaysilver.com
I am taking Celie Fago's class at Bead and Button and I am so excited! She is a wonderful instructor and in a 3 day class, I think I am going to come home with a lot of info! Anyone else going?

Debbie

beclectic
04-05-2004, 06:37 PM
<snip> They have a lot of info as well as www.artclaysilver.com

I am taking Celie Fago's class at Bead and Button and I am so excited! She is a wonderful instructor and in a 3 day class, I think I am going to come home with a lot of info! Anyone else going?

Debbie

The class sounds great.

The link 'www.artclaysilver.com' is not working. It goes to a site that isn't built yet.

debkauz
04-06-2004, 12:46 PM
Oops! Thanks Barbara, it's www.artclayworld.com I have seen them at B&B in Milwaukee. They have some great instruction books from Japan. Gorgeous work and a bit of a laugh sometimes at the translations. The pictures are great, so I 'm not sure if the translations are even necessary. I haven't worked with ACS, but I have heard that it is a bit stiffer and dries out a bit faster than PMC. The woman that I took my PMC classes from uses both. They are NOT compatable, however, so don't try to mix.

I can't wait for the Celie Fago class. I have seen a few of her things in different magazines and she is truely incredible. I am a bit intimidated, but figure that I will learn so much.

And, FYI...for those of you who don't have a kiln, it is possible to find people who do PMC in your area that will fire it for you for a small fee. Yahoo has a PMC group and I found someone there who was willing. Once it is leather hard, it can stay that way forever waiting to be fired so you can make a bunch and then send it. I have heard anywhere from $3 to $10 per shelf as the going rate. If you go to the PMC site, you can also ask in the forum there.

d

beclectic
04-06-2004, 02:05 PM
<snip>

And, FYI...for those of you who don't have a kiln, it is possible to find people who do PMC in your area that will fire it for you for a small fee. Yahoo has a PMC group and I found someone there who was willing. Once it is leather hard, it can stay that way forever waiting to be fired so you can make a bunch and then send it. I have heard anywhere from $3 to $10 per shelf as the going rate. If you go to the PMC site, you can also ask in the forum there.

d

On that note if any WCers are in my area and want to fire a few pieces of PMC or ArtClay Silver or even gold PMC or ArtClay, I'll be happy to share my kiln. However, please note that my kiln is very small. It has one shelf which is 6"x6" so I can't do a large piece or a lot at a time. Also my kiln has to be kiln sat because I don't have the digital controller built for it yet. I've never used the cork clay that you burn out so I need to experiment with that. Just PM me and we can work something out. :)