1. What is PMC?

    It's (Precious Metal Clay) a clay-like medium used to make, jewellery, beads and small sculpture. It consists of very small particals of metals (such as silver, gold, platinum, or copper) mixed with an organic binder and water. Alloys such as bronze and steel are also available. Metal Clay can be shaped just like any soft clay, by hand or using moulds. After drying, it can be fired in a variety of ways including in a kiln, with a handheld torch, or on a gas stove. The binder burns away, leaving the pure sintered metal.

  2. How much electric does a kiln use?

    The cost of electricity is figured in kilowatt-hours (KWh). A kilowatt-hour is 1,000 watts of electricity running for 1 hour. (10 – 100-watt light bulbs glowing for one hour consume 1 KWh of electricity.)

    To find what the power company charges you for a kilowatt-hour, look at your electric bill, call your power company, or visit their website. The electric rate usually varies depending on the time of year and amount of electricity you use. In the summer, rates in most areas are higher. Also, add the other costs listed on your electric bill, such as power transmission charges, taxes, etc. In some areas electricity is less expensive during low-demand times, such as nights and weekends. Call your power company to find out if this is available where you live.

    Look at your kiln’s electrical data plate. It is usually on the side of the switch box. The data plate lists the watts, amps, and volts. If watts are not listed, multiply amps x volts. (Example: 15 amps x 240 volts = 3,600 watts.)

    Divide the wattage of your kiln by 1000, which gives the kilowatts. (Move the decimal point 3 spaces to the left.)


    10,800 watts ÷ 1000 = 10.8

    4,800 watts ÷ 1000 = 4.8

    800 watts ÷ 1000 = .8

    To figure kilowatt-hours for your kiln, multiply the kilowatts by the number of hours that all the elements are turned on.

    If the heating elements for a 10.8-kilowatt kiln stay on continuously for 5 hours, the kiln would use 10.8 x 5 kilowatt-hours.

    10.8 x 5 = 54 KWh (kilowatt-hours)

    Then multiply by the amount your power company charges for a kilowatt-hour.

    Example: 54 KWh x .09 = $4.86

    However, the heating elements do not stay on throughout the firing. If your kiln uses infinite control switches or a digital controller, the elements cycle on and off to control the heating rate. The clicking noise that you hear during firing is the sound of the switches or relays turning the elements on and off.

    The faster or hotter your kiln fires, the longer the elements stay on per hour. As a rough rule of thumb, figure that the elements stay on 1/2 – 3/4 of the total firing time.


    A kiln draws 10,800 watts and the firing lasts 5 hours. You estimate that the elements remain powered during half the firing.

    10,800 watts ÷ 1,000 = 10.8 kilowatts

    10.8 x 5 hours = 54 KWh (kilowatt-hours) .

    Taken from http://www.paragonweb.com/Kiln_Pointer.cfm?PID=165

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Polymer Clay

  1. What is Polymer Clay?

    Polymer clay is a sculptable material based on the polyvinyl chloride  (PVC). It usually contains no clay minerals, and is only called 'clay' because it's texture and working properties resemble those of mineral clay. 

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Contemporary Clay Instructors Programme

  1. What is the Contemporary Clays Introduction Class?

    This one day class is designed to showcase the versatility of the three Contemporary Clays used in the CCIP Certification.

    Air Dry Clay (Makin's Clay ®)

    Polymer Clay (Sculpey – Premo!)

    Metal Clay (PMC – Precious Metal Clay)

    The class focuses heavily on techniques: - you will learn about the use of moulds, finishing your piece professionally, application of embellishments such as Pearlex Powders, construction and adhering your clay to other objects.

    Three innovative projects will be covered allowing you to create components to assemble:-

    Precious Metal Clay - Seashell charm bracelet.

    Air Dry Clay – Liquorice Allsorts bracelet or Raku Vase

    Polymer Clay – A cover for your own journal or sketch book.

    This class also allows people who wish to enroll in the Contemporary Clay Instructors Program to have the work created in the Introduction Class credited towards the completion of the CCIP

    Certificate One. Participants will receive a $100 credit off the price of Certificate One. For further information on the Instructor Program – please contact a Training Instructor in your area.

    Cost - $140

    Includes instruction, written notes and materials.

    Students to provide:-

    • Small note book (spiral books approx 150 x 100mm are perfect) and a small vase not more than 15 cm tall.

    • If you would like to assemble your PMC piece at the class, chain, jump rings, clasps etc will be available at an additional charge, tools available (time permitting).

  2. What is the cost of Certification?

    Certificate 1:  $715.00 which includes the CCIP Makins Kit Allocation  plus 1x7gram package PMC3, 1x9gram package PMC3, 6x56gram packages Premo Sculpey Clay. Total Kit RRP Value is $460.20

    Artisan Discounts of 10% off RRP on Makin's Clay and Products - After Completing Cert 1 and Artisan discounts of 10% off RRP on Premo, PMC and BRONZclay, COPPRclay, FASTfireclay, Prometheus Bronze Clay and Prometheus Copper Clay.  Discounts of between 5-10% on a variety of products on the www.metalclay.com.au website excluding Art Clay Silver Products, Books and Sale items.

    Certificate 2: $760.00 (allocation kit information and discount program provided upon request).

  3. Are there any additional or 'hidden' costs that I need to know about apart from the price of certification?

    There are three exam pieces at the end of each certification that are "student choice" pieces.  These "free choice pieces" will undoubtebly vary in materials and quantities.  On this basis, estimating and including a cost for the exam pieces, is impossible to estimate and students need to cover the cost of exam pieces.

  4. What kind of support can I expect to get after I've completed the course?

    You will become part of our national team of instructors and have access to our online group where there will always be senior insructors available to answer any queries you have.  You will also be able to message other new instructors like yourself and offer them encouragement and advice.  Metal Clay Australiasia Pty Ltd and the CCIP Senior Training Instructors will arrange ongoing Train the Instructor classes, which will keep you abreast of new ideas, techniques and products.

  5. Once I have my certifcation under my belt, what then?

    We will offer advice on marketing strategies and on where and how to maximize your business opportunites.  Ultimately though this is your business and how successful you are will depend on your own drive and motivation.

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  • "I attended one of Hector"s Introduction to PMC classes wanting to learn the basic techniques. I had read a lot about PMC, but had not tried it. Hector was very organized, helpf..."
    Karen Ambrose
    Jewellery & Object Designer
  • "I was extremely priviledged to do an Introduction to PMC with Hector. I had not a skerrick of idea what PMC was all about. Hectors PMC knowledge was mega helpful as well being a..."
    Introduction to PMC class with Hector ...
  • "I really enjoyed yesterday, thanks so much. I did some more burnishing when I got home ... I'm delighted with the heart ... and also my new tools. Now I know I can do some firi..."
    Karen Sunter
    Brit PMC Clayer

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