HOW TO PREVENT YOUR POLYMER CLAY PROJECT FROM 
BURNING IN THE TOASTER OVEN?

You have seen the test on the toaster oven and the test result shows that the toaster oven is 
too hot for baking polymer clay.  It will burnt your clay project and produce toxic fumes at 
that temperature. Well there is always a solution to every problem. Using the same toaster 
oven after it is cool for 45 min., I created a thermal shield with aluminium foil and a piece of 
4"x4"x1/ 8"thk. white ceramic tile base.


 


Placing the oven thermometer inside the thermal shield  
as shown in the picture. Put the shield into the oven 
Set the toaster timer for 5 minute, notice the temperature 
will slowly rise to about 120ºC(248ºF). If you placed the 
PC beads or any other PC project, it will not burn the 
clay inside the shield.

 


Repeat the timer for another 5 or 10 min., when the timer 
almost near the 5min. run, you will notice the temperature 
rises to about 135ºC(275ºF).

 


Keep it running for 15min. max and another 15min. in 
this way, you can bake your completed PC beads or 
PC Project in the toaster oven.

 


For bigger toaster oven, you can built a thermal box out 
of ceramic tiles, the tiles that I am using is approx. 4"x4"x
1/ 8"thk.The 5 pcs. are bonded with 2 parts epoxy putty.
When place the thermal box in the bigger toaster oven,
preheat it for 15 min. 


NOTE: Solving the problem by shielding the PC project will prevent direct heating 
and the polymer clay will not be burnt. The temperature recorded with the oven 
thermometer shows, well within the recommended baking temperature.





   

Techniques/Lessons/Projects  -   Toaster Oven For Baking Polymer Clay

From:  simgarie  Nov-4 10:01 am 
To:  ALL  (1 of 16) 
 42941.1  

Have you ever wonder about the temperature of the toaster over when baking polymer clay?
http://www.garieinternational.com.sg/clay/shop/toaster.htm

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 From:  Ilene2004   Nov-4 11:27 pm 
To:  simgarie (2 of 16) 
42941.2 in reply to 42941.1  

Thanks for taking the time to post all that info!

Ilene

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From:  simgarie  Nov-5 5:33 am 
To:  Ilene2004   (3 of 16) 
42941.3 in reply to 42941.2  

Hi thanks,
It is always good to share information and there is lots of people interested in polyclaying. My site will be useful for them.

Regards,
Garie

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From:  Melody01  Nov-5 1:07 pm 
To:  simgarie  (4 of 16) 
 42941.4 in reply to 42941.1  

Hi Garie, Thanks so much for sharing this info. Would you consider adding the Fahrenheit to Celsius equivalents to make it more user friendly for those in the US? Conversion table here:
<www.sengpielaudio.com/calculator-fahrenheit.htm >

Thanks !
Anita
Edited 11/5/2005 1:11 pm ET by Melody01

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From:  simgarie  Nov-5 6:04 pm 
To:  Melody01  (5 of 16) 
42941.5 in reply to 42941.4  

Yes Anita, Thanks for your conversion link and it is useful. I had already updated it with Fahrenheit indication.
If you need any help, please sent me an email.

Regards,
Garie

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From:  Melody01  Nov-5 6:07 pm 
To:  simgarie (6 of 16) 
 42941.6 in reply to 42941.5  

Hi Garie, Thanks! I grew up with Centigrade, but I just thought those who hadn't been might be a little confused. BTW, I got to spend a little more time at your site and want to spend a bit more . You have some great things there! I love the picture of readying the clay for 160 school children .Yikes! I bet they had a great time.

Best Wishes,
Anita
Edited 11/5/2005 6:10 pm ET by Melody01

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From:  simgarie  Nov-5 6:30 pm 
To:  Melody01  (7 of 16) 
 42941.7 in reply to 42941.6  

Thanks Anita, Polymer clay is a very popular art medium, created lots of fine artist around the world. I have been playing with PC for more than 20 years and been testing polymer clay for years, with toaster oven, convection oven, microwave oven and heat gun. I realised that there isn't enough information about baking with various appliances, there were always question about baking polymer clay in the forum. That is how I got started, there was a big debate about microwaving in PolymerClay Central, but, I still stick to my test and method and it is the safest. After all my Polymer clay beads and critters have lasted for more that a year and they are still in condition.

Regards,
Garie

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From:  Howard (howardsegal)  Nov-5 7:17 pm 
To:  ALL  (8 of 16) 
42941.8 in reply to 42941.7  

A convection type toaster oven would be best. Or one that is well insulated to hold the heat better.
But, no matter, an oven thermometer is needed in all cases. Even if you use a regular home oven.

I have the Sculpey oven thermometer on sale for 1/2 price

www.clayfactory.net

then on the drop down menu click "I want to go shopping"

thanks
Howard
www.clayfactory.net

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From:  simgarie  Nov-6 6:05 am 
To:  Howard (howardsegal)  (9 of 16) 
42941.9 in reply to 42941.8  

Hi Howard, I agreed with your comment and its a good to buy a thermometer. Sometime convection oven can have slight difference in temperature reading, that is why you need to check and make sure its the right reading.
Its a good bargain at half the price for Sculpey thermometer.
Regards,
Garie

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From:  Melody01  Nov-6 7:53 am 
To:  simgarie  (10 of 16) 
42941.10 in reply to 42941.7  

Hi Garie, Thanks for sharing all your helpful research into curing poly clay. Wow, 20 years is a LONG time. I have had your microwave info archived for quite a while and you just reminded me that I have wanted to check it out........ Next vacation :-)
Best Wishes,
Anita

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From:  Tx_Becca   Nov-6 6:18 pm 
To:  ALL  (11 of 16) 
42941.11 in reply to 42941.10  

 I think it is safe to say that all ovens with have some variation is temperature.  even my kitchen oven spikes.  Fortunately for me..  my Toaster oven   (an old Black and decker).. and super consistant with its temperature.   Some of my friends with newer ones don't have that same luck.  
The Bottom line is  test not only your oven several times, but also your thermometer, as they too can be inconsistant.   I put 3 different therms in my oven and got  40 degrees of difference between them. 

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From:  simgarie  Nov-6 8:40 pm 
To:  Melody01  (12 of 16) 
 42941.12 in reply to 42941.10  

Thanks Alicia, I am glad to help when comes to testing polymer clay, conditioning and baking them. Glad that they are helpful and informative.
Take care,
Regards,
Garie

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From:  simgarie  Nov-6 9:13 pm 
To:  Tx_Becca  (13 of 16) 
 42941.13 in reply to 42941.11  

Hi Thanks,
Yes, the convection oven, ovens and the thermometer can be inconsistant to different degree. I always set my temperature of my convection ovens to 125C (257F) and I know from the thermometer reading is 140C(284F), it is still within the baking limit of polymer clay.
For any new oven or second hand oven, you can test it by putting a piece of polymer clay and set it to 130ºC(266ºF) for half an hour, if it does not turn light brown or no change in color go for another half an hour. You should know your own domestic oven after constant baking of your polymer clay projects.
The toaster is only an alternative for those without any Convection oven and are interested in polymer clay creations.
Thanks for the posting Rebecca it is good to discuss the subject with individual experience in using the appliances and the thermometer, after all we should still trust our senses.

Regards,
Garie Sim
Edited 11/7/2005 2:08 am by simgarie

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From:  Howard (howardsegal)  Nov-7 12:11 pm 
To:  ALL (14 of 16) 
42941.14 in reply to 42941.10  

You can also lay some ceramic tiles on the shelf. This will help keep the toaster oven hot, as the tiles will retain the heat alittle longer.

Howard
www.clayfactory.net

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From:  Melody01  Nov-7 5:39 pm 
To:  ALL  (15 of 16) 
 42941.15 in reply to 42941.11  

<<The Bottom line is test not only your oven several times, but also your thermometer, as they too can be inconsistant. I put 3 different therms in my oven and got 40 degrees of difference between them.>>

That's for sure!
I'm reposting an old post in hopes that it will reach soem of the newer members. Just seemed kind of appropriate for the discussion
Anita
-----
If you purchase an oven thermometer I highly recommend the candy kind with mercury, not the kind operated by a spring mechanism/needle indicator ....like the kind Sculpey sells. Unless you can find a flat candy thermometer that has a handle that can withstand oven temperatures (and I'm still looking), you have to rig a way to keep the round one flat so it doesn't roll around, though.

After burning some clay using two different brands of the spring type thermometers in my convection oven, I did an experiment to compare the results of various thermometers. I first checked the calibration of two candy thermometers by putting them in boiling water (212 degrees F at sea level). One was right on, one low by 5 degrees.

Then I compared the temperature reading on the best candy thermometer with the two of the spring thermometers by placing them in the well preheated oven at the same time and moving them into identical positions to take oven hot spots into consideration. The spring types did not agree with either each other OR the candy thermometer. The brand new Sculpey brand was WAY off, reading 25 degrees too low (and got returned).

FYI: chart to calculate boiling point /altitude
<http://www.csgnetwork.com/prescorh2oboilcalc.html >

I can't remember if the above site is in Celsius or Fahrenheit. In case conversion is necessary:
<www.sengpielaudio.com/calculator-fahrenheit.htm >

AFTER my experiment, I read about thermometers at < www.glassattic.com > under "baking" and found reports from clayers that the springs in the spring type tend to wear out after 5-6 months of constant use.

Best Wishes,
Anita

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From:  simgarie  Nov-7 11:08 pm 
To:  Melody01  (16 of 16) 
42941.16 in reply to 42941.15  

Hi Anita,
Well your information will be an interest to lots of clayer.
I am glad to put up the posting and hope to invite others to post their experience in using toaster oven, thermometer and problem related to baking polymer clay.
Thanks,
Regards,
Garie

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