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Topic: Glass beads and adhesives problem  (Read 899 times)
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« on: November 06, 2007 12:03:20 AM »

I don't have any photos to show at the moment, but I've been molding small gumdrops from Sculpey, and attempting to adhere tiny glass beads (the kinds without holes) to them to simulate sugar.  However, getting the beads to remain stuck to the gumdrops is a problem.  I've sanded the surface of the cured Sculpey to allow adhesives to stick better, but a lot of the beads still fall off.

What's worked the best so far to initially adhere the beads to the gumdrops are tacky glue, and clear nail polish (I'm using what's sitting on my desk, but am willing to purchase better things.)  To seal the beads on, clear acrylic varnish works nicely, as does more clear nail polish.

I was wondering if there was a strong spray adhesive I could use, instead, to make things a little easier.  Brushing sealer over the beads always causes some of them to fall off, and merely handling the gumdrops loosens a lot of beads before I even get to the sealing stage, even if the first adhesive has had time to fully dry before I touch the gumdrops.

Thanks for any suggestions.

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« Reply #1 on: November 06, 2007 08:00:02 AM »

I'd suggest super glue.  It dries clear and will bond anything!  Cheesy
You should also be able to push the beads into the clay before baking (in the future).

Diane B.
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« Reply #2 on: November 06, 2007 10:07:12 AM »

Probably the best way to adhere holeless beads to raw polymer clay
is to coat the clay first with layer of liquid clay, then press them into the clay a little as you apply them. 
On a flat clay surface, they certainly wouldn't fall off on the way to the oven so pressing in wouldn't be necessary, but since your clay is dimensional, it would help a lot.  Or I guess, you could apply the beads to one "side" and bake, then do the other side.
Once liquid clay is baked, it's a very strong adhesive all by itself, but you could then also put a layer of acrylic sealer (like Varathane) over the top of the beads for even more security.

If you wanted to use something that would tack up though to hold the beads onto the clay before baking, you could instead use a coating of permanent white glue or even acrylic sealer... let it tack up, then press on the beads and bake.  Later you could cover with acrylic sealer and dry it, or even use a liquid clay (as long as you use an especially clear one--Kato's or Fimo's, not TLS) and bake it.

You might also be able to put the liquid clay over a coat of dried white glue on the clay, then press in the beads... I've never never tried that though.

There's more info on using holeless beads with polymer clay on this page of my site if you want to check it out:
(... under the Seed Beads category, click on the subcategory called Attaching non-clay beads (glues, mechanical hold) + holeless beads...)


Diane B.

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(had to move them from YahooPhotos, so many now without captions)
« Reply #3 on: November 06, 2007 01:48:04 PM »

Thank you so much!  I'm going to try the liquid clay idea first, to see how it works out.

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