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Topic: Dumb question joining pieces  (Read 2896 times)
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heil_kitler
« on: March 16, 2008 03:40:09 PM »

How do you join two pieces together? Do you smoosh them together or bake them first and then glue them together?
I don't get itt..
Sorry for such a dumb question. ( >-<)
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Diane B.
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GlassAttic --polymer clay "encyclopedia"


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« Reply #1 on: March 16, 2008 05:01:40 PM »

That's one great thing about polymer clay... you can do all of the things you mentioned, plus more.  Which one or ones you choose would depend on exactly what you're trying to join, what kind of stress it will get later, and even the brand of clay you're using.

Generally pieces are joined when the clay is raw, but to create a successful join there needs to be a large enough area of contact between the parts, or a mechical hold of some kind, or an armature underneath/inside, or some kind of "glue" (which can even mean just letting the parts sit together overnight before baking so that their plasticizers can seep into each other).  The smaller the area of join, the easier it can be broken though, particularly if it's sticking out, etc.

There's much more info on making strong joins between pieces of raw clay on this page at my site , if you want to read more about it:
http://www.glassattic.com/polymer/glues-Diluent.htm
(...click on Some Bonding Techniques  > Clay to Clay)

Why don't you say what type of polymer things you'd like to make, and we can give more specific info about those as well?


Diane B.
« Last Edit: March 16, 2008 05:03:43 PM by Diane B. » THIS ROCKS   Logged

POLYMER CLAY "ENCYCLOPEDIA" 
http://glassattic.com/polymer/contents.htm
few of my photos
http://s96.photobucket.com/albums/l163/DianeBB
(had to move them from YahooPhotos, so many now without captions)
heil_kitler
« Reply #2 on: March 16, 2008 05:42:17 PM »

Aww thank you that helped a lot!
Right now I'm making a cartoony bunny and trying to attach the bunny ears to his head. I'm using sculpey brand too.
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Diane B.
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Joined: 01-May-2004

GlassAttic --polymer clay "encyclopedia"


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« Reply #3 on: March 17, 2008 10:23:01 AM »

I should have said too that what makes raw polymer clay stick to itself (if there's enough contact) is first that the clay is a bit sticky so that alone generally holds it together till baking time.  During baking though when the plasticizers in the clay harden (polymerize), the plasticizers in the two pieces will also join together across the two pieces as well as inside the pieces, creating a bond at the join.

You have two special concerns in your case though that will making bonding more difficult:

Sculpey, SuperSculpey, and Sculpey III are the weakest clays after baking in any thin or projecting areas, so if a bond is stressed (say, pressure gets put on an ear) the projection is more likely to snap off at the join than if using a stronger clay like Premo for example, which takes stress better in those situations.

The other problem is that there's often little contact between an ear and a head because the ear can be small, so the bond could end up weak for that reason too. 

You'll probably want to do one or more of the things that makes a bond stronger unless you'll just be setting the finished item on a shelf and never handling it or making sure it will never drop, etc:

...use a stronger polymer clay
...make as much contact with the head as possible at the base of the ear
...don't make the ear too thin or too long
...use liquid clay or Diluent-Softener in the join, rubbed in
...let plain clays sit together overnight before baking, or even if using liquid clay or Diluent let the joined piece sit awhile so either of those can seep well into both sides
...use an armature between the two pieces... e.g,  a short length of toothpick, wire, cardstock, etc., depending on the size of the ear --perhaps with white glue or liquid clay on each end


There are lessons on making simple sculpts on several pages of my site if you want to check them out for more tips too:

http://www.glassattic.com/polymer/sculpture.htm
(...under the Websites category, click on Whimsical Figures...)
http://www.glassattic.com/polymer/kids_beginners.htm
(... click on Sculpting...)
http://www.glassattic.com/polymer/heads_masks.htm
(...click on Simpler Heads...)

The Christmas page and the Halloween/Spring-Easter/St.Patrick's Day/Thanksgiving/etc page will also have lessons for simple sculpts like snowmen, Santas, angels, penguins, etc., for Christmas and winter,  and bunnies, monsters, leprechauns, pilgrims, etc., for the other holidays:
http://www.glassattic.com/polymer/Christmas.htm
http://www.glassattic.com/polymer/Halloween_etc.htm



HTH,

Diane B.
« Last Edit: March 17, 2008 10:43:14 AM by Diane B. » THIS ROCKS   Logged

POLYMER CLAY "ENCYCLOPEDIA" 
http://glassattic.com/polymer/contents.htm
few of my photos
http://s96.photobucket.com/albums/l163/DianeBB
(had to move them from YahooPhotos, so many now without captions)
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