Polymer Clay Talk -  Cornstarch baking problem...any ideas? (454 views) Notify me whenever anyone posts in this discussion.Subscribe
From: CKCatLady9/4/14 10:31 AM 
To: All  (1 of 8) 

I had something weird happen yesterday while baking some items in cornstarch. I have a baking pan that is filled with cornstarch, probably 3/4 inch deep, and I bake in it regularly. I use my kitchen oven for curing, and use an oven thermometer. The pan is covered with foil while baking. Yesterday I put some pendant focals in along with three little cat figurines, which I laid flat on their backs on top of the cornstarch. The pendants were thinner than the cats, and I removed them after about 40 minutes. All was well. I left the cats in for another 20, for a total of about an hour, which is what I normally do. I let them cool in the pan while I did other things, and came back later to rinse the corn starch off. When I rinsed them, I realized a thick layer of cornstarch was stuck to them...hard. I ran them under water and rubbed at them to removed the cornstarch, and, as I did so, the cornstarch started flaking off and taking the surface clay with it! Now the little critters are all pitted and broken, and one of them has a large cracked layer that looks like it's going to break off at any time.

I've NEVER had this occur before, and wonder if anyone else has had anything like this happen. I've baked these little guys using the same method for years without incident. And the pendants, which were in the same pan, are absolutely fine. Anyone have any ideas?



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From: SherryBinNH9/4/14 2:10 PM 
To: CKCatLady  (2 of 8) 
 70977.2 in reply to 70977.1 

I've never used cornstarch so this is just brainstorming...

Did you re-use the same cornstarch too many times, so it was contaminated with clay or liquid clay that then bonded with the figures?

Was the cornstarch moist?

Was there liquid clay on the figures that the cornstarch could stick to?

It sound like something along these lines might have  happened...

Sherry Bailey


From: CKCatLady9/5/14 9:14 AM 
To: SherryBinNH  (3 of 8) 
 70977.3 in reply to 70977.2 

Hmmm, yes the cornstarch has been used a bunch. I didn't use liquid clay, but that doesn't rule out something being on there from a previous bake. Guess I'll throw that cornstarch out and see what happens with some new stuff.


Thanks for the suggestions.




From: surfingcat89/8/14 8:20 PM 
To: CKCatLady  (4 of 8) 
 70977.4 in reply to 70977.1 



I used cornstarch once and had a similar problem - it was a thin layer rather than a thick one but it wouldn't budge - after that I switched to baking soda which dissolves.  Weird that you haven't had that problem before but it happened. I am assuming you haven't changed clay brand either. Did you have new handcream? I hope that fresh corn starch prevents it happening again but it's annoying if you don't know why it happened.




From: CKCatLady9/9/14 9:07 AM 
To: surfingcat8  (5 of 8) 
 70977.5 in reply to 70977.4 

No new clay, and I do use a barrier hand cream, but have used it for years. I threw out the cornstarch and will start over. Funny that some items got stuck to it and some didn't.

Thanks for your ideas.




From: surfingcat89/9/14 11:44 AM 
To: CKCatLady  (6 of 8) 
 70977.6 in reply to 70977.5 

Does seem very odd if nothing has changed. Hope you solve the mystery - or at least don't have it happen again!





From: lslang9/20/14 8:08 PM 
To: CKCatLady  (7 of 8) 
 70977.7 in reply to 70977.1 

I read somewhere that you can lay a kleenix on top of the cornstarch (or baking soda) and then your clay, OR wrap a kleenix loosely around your piece before nesting it in the cornstarch.


From: CKCatLady9/21/14 7:43 AM 
To: lslang  (8 of 8) 
 70977.8 in reply to 70977.7 

Interesting, I've never heard of that before. May give it a try with some scrap clay to see what happens.




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