Can you bake polymer clay in a toaster oven? (5 Pieces of Advice)
In this brief guide, we will answer the question, can you bake polymer clay in a toaster oven? We will discuss the challenges that baking clay in a toaster oven presents and some tips.
Can you bake polymer clay in a toaster oven?
You can bake polymer clay in a toaster oven. Some people buy an extra toaster oven and dedicate it to baking polymer clay only. Having a different toaster oven than using the one you use for everyday cooking, makes it safe as the polymer fumes can not mingle with your food.
To bake polymer clay in a toaster oven, place it in a well-ventilated and use a thermometer to keep the temperature in check.
What are the pros and cons of baking polymer clay in a toaster oven?
A toaster oven is ideal for baking polymer clay because it is small, cheap, and portable. You can keep a separate one for baking polymer clay only. Toaster ovens heat and cool down quickly and the temperature is easy to control and monitor. Toaster ovens are similar to clay-bake ovens, hence you can substitute them easily.
On the other hand, you would need to get a thermometer to keep the temperature in check as small ovens can overheat easily. You would need to check the temperature frequently to prevent the polymer clay from burning.
The cons of baking in a toaster oven:
Small ovens cool down easily and will need to be reheated to get to the desired temperature. However, the temperature tends to go up very quickly in a short time, hence scorching your clay.
A solution to this problem is to tent the beads up so that heat can not hit the beads directly.
Risk of catching fire
If you use parchment or office paper to tent the beads, it should not touch the heating element otherwise it would catch fire. Poor handling of the heating even at low temperatures can trigger a fire, so be careful.
For beads to cure properly, you need to bake for 30 minutes per ¼ of the thickness. For the beads to cure properly, you need to heat them for a longer time than usual. Only convection ovens are good at retaining their temperatures.
The temperature of toaster ovens can be deceiving
The temperature that you think that the toaster oven is at may be inaccurate. The small oven dials are usually inaccurate and polymer baking experts advise that you use an oven thermometer, to keep the temperature in check.
The temperature in the toaster oven also tends to vary in different locations. High heat can cause your polymer clay to burn. Therefore, you would need to track the hotspots using the thermometer, where the temperature is hotter than the rest of the oven.
Some tips before you bake polymer clap
- Preheat your oven before baking polymer clay.
- Use a copy paper or index card to prevent the clay from getting shiny.
- Follow instructions given on the package. The time and temperature at which clay needs to be baked are stated.
- When baking two different brands of clay, you would need to bake at a higher temperature of the two.
How does baking polymer clay pose a threat to health?
Contrary to what people believe, baking polymer clay does not produce any toxic fumes. The threat to the well-being of a person is caused when the polymer burns when the temperature exceeds 350 Fahrenheit or 177 Celsius. The polymer releases hydrogen chloride fumes that are an irritant.
While hydrogen Chloride fumes do not possess the ability to cause cancer or anything, they can be a harsh irritant for some people.
People who have asthma or breathing difficulties are bothered the most by the release of such irritants, similar to how perfumes can cause a sore throat or a headache.
Can you use a microwave oven to bake polymer clay?
You can never use the microwave efficiently to bake polymer clay.
Microwaves have hotspots that can cause the clay to burn easily. There is not a fixed temperature in the microwave and it can cause the clay to overheat, and melt. It would cause the clay to become crumbly and melt and cleaning up can be a threat as it can burn you.
Can you oven-bake polymer clay?
You can bake polymer clay in a home oven. You need to be careful to allow sufficient ventilation and clean the oven regularly.
The threat is that burning the polymer clay can cause breathing difficulties.
Other FAQs about Baking that you may be interested in.
In this brief guide, we answered the question, can you bake polymer clay in a toaster oven? We discussed the challenges that baking clay in a toaster oven presents and some tips.