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Topic: fixing a broken piece?  (Read 9254 times)
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« on: August 22, 2011 07:12:43 AM »

Before my aunt passed away from breast cancer, she turned to sculpting as a type of therapy. She had never used polymer clays before and in a matter of months was creating some truly amazing works of art. I was lucky enough to receive one, and it means a great deal to me. Unfortunately, when I moved into my apartment, a small piece broke in half. I'm assuming this can be repaired, but I know nothing about clay and I don't want to use the wrong glue and ruin it. It's about 10 years old, if that makes a difference.

The broken caterpillar

Thank you!!
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« Reply #1 on: August 22, 2011 07:23:25 AM »

Wow, what a beautiful piece.  I did a bit of googling and found this:

If cracks do form in your sculpture, they're usually easy to fix. Use gap-filling superglue (cyanoacrylate) to fill smaller cracks. Wipe excess glue from the sculpture with little "twists" of paper toweling. Larger cracks can be filled in with two-part epoxy putty. It's a good idea to feed a little superglue into large cracks before filling them with putty.

« Reply #2 on: August 22, 2011 08:01:12 AM »

your Aunt did some beautiful sculpting work!  What a wonderful piece to have to remember her and her talent.

I've used superglue with some good success. You'll still see the line where it broke but it'll stay in place pretty well.

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« Reply #3 on: August 22, 2011 11:23:33 AM »

Personally, I haven't had much luck with "instant glues" but perhaps your piece won't receive much stress (instant glues are mostly for "pull apart" strength, not for press-from-the-side strength, and they work best with the pieces match exactly and there's a fair amount of surface connected).  If you use it, you might want to use one of the "gap-filling" ones like Zap-a-Gap and also be sure and prepare the surfaces and apply exactly as stated.

You might want to read about some other glues and ways to fix broken-off bits of cured polymer clay on this page at my site:
http://glassattic.com/polymer/glues-Diluent.htm > Some Bonding Techniques

You can also use regular "Gorilla Glue" (especially the one with the "precision tip"--that one may dry white) or other brands of polyurethane glue for reeeally strong bonding since they'll bond almost anything to anything, but those kinds swell while curing/drying and are often yellow so need to be weighted or clamped together and any glue that seeps out must be removed before it sets.

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« Reply #4 on: December 14, 2011 11:14:21 AM »

Your aunt was a very talented lady. I'm very sorry for losing her. I myself turned to clay when I was diagnosed with breast cancer this year. I can see the love that she put into her creation.

I use super glue as well to bond broken pieces. You might have to hold it carefully for a few seconds to get secure bond. Let us know what worked for you and thank you for sharing a part of your aunt with us.

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