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Has anyone tried polymer clay...technique called "caning"?

4 replies [Last post]
CloudBuster
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Joined: 04/14/2009

Hey all,

I've been poking around on the Internet and I came across a polymer clay technique called "caning" that I think might work well for those of you that want to create a bunch of customized pieces for protoytyping. Here's a definintion for you (I grabbed this from here: http://www.jaedworks.com/clayspot/polyclay-faq/caning.html)

"Caneworking is a technique that was originally used in glassworking for making complex designs. A cane is a log or cylinder of clay that has a design running through it, so each slice of the cane - the cross-section - contains the design. You can make a large design that's easy to handle, and then reduce the size of the cane by pressing or rolling it so the cane becomes longer and thinner and the design becomes tiny and delicate. Because of the ductility of the clay, the design stays intact no matter how small you make it.

Canes can be made of any design at all - geometrics, landscapes, faces, quilt patterns, or anything else. The cane can be round, square, triangular, or any other regular shape."

Although this technique is used mostly for bead making, I thought it might be interesting to try it for prototyping a board game. Polymer clay is pretty easy to work with even after it has been baked. You can sand it, polish it, paint it, etc. There are other techniques out there for making a bunch of different semiprecious stones, too. Do you like what lapis lazuli looks like? There's a technique for making it yourself out of polymer clay. Do you want pieces that look like they were carved out of bone? No problem! There are techniques for making polymer clay look like bone, too.

My one worry about this (before I try it) is that it seems like it'll take a lot of clay. There are other materials I'll probably need like a pasta machine (for flattening the clay evenly and making clay blends called "Skinner Blends").

Has anyone tried this? I'm also worried that it's very time intensive, but perhaps that's cuz I have no idea what I'm doing. Since we spend a lot of time working on board games anyway, perhaps that's not a big deal, but maybe this is a waste of time when there's probably something out there that'll fit the bill.

Still...I'm curious about it and wondered if any of you have tried it.

Here's a pretty extensive collection of canes to look at. Some are really intricate, but hopefully you can see that making a simple design for a game might not be too hard.

http://artmakersworlds.com/PolymerClayCanes.shtml

-CB-

scifiantihero
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Joined: 07/08/2009
Also . . .

. . . works well for cookies!

Um, in case anyone cares . . .

:D

CloudBuster
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Joined: 04/14/2009
HA! Nice! -CB-

HA!

Nice!

-CB-

treybert
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Joined: 12/21/2009
http://www.youtube.com/watch?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uep6FKZWRsY

The video version. Well for candy, but essentially the same process. Granted with clay, it would be less time sensitive.

CloudBuster
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Joined: 04/14/2009
Great Video!

Yep!

Looks almost exactly the same as the polymer clay tutorials I've seen!

Thanks for the vid!

-CB-

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