Instructables

Make Cold Porcelain Clay Beads & Wooden Toy Abacus (Soroban)

I needed to make specific coloured beads for my wooden soroban / suan-pan / abacus.
This wooden abacus would make a great gift any child would enjoy playing with!
Learning abacus is a fun way to introduce Bill Handley's Fun and Fast Speed Math Method.
I like his Speed Math method as it is stress free, simple and fast and so much easier to get the correct answer everytime!

This instructable shows the new recipe I developed for the abacus beads and how
I constructed the abacus from wood in under an hour. The beads took a few days to dry thoroughly.

After several experiments with the Cold Porcelain Clay recipe, I accidentally
discovered a good recipe for making beads. Previously, everything seemed
to crack and shrink and warp the next day.

This new recipe (modification of the bird's next recipe and uses two additional ingredients)
can be used for millefiori beads as well, which I'll put up some examples soon. This new recipe dries a
lot faster, after 30 minutes without cling wrap it was drying out. It took a week to dry thoroughly
and shrank a bit.

And the best part, I must say is - no baking necessary! You can keep the colours separate
so your design will have consistent harmony to your artwork, you can make
canes and even millefiori with greater ease and even skinner blends through a pasta machine.

This instructable will show you how to make mixed media beads with the new Cold Porcelain Clay recipe (3rd version).

Watch the high definition tutorial below:

 
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webmanoffesto8 months ago
Your ingredients don't call for tartar powder:
"Extra Sticky Cold Porcelain Clay Recipe Ingredients:"
A. 1 cup cornflour
B. 2 cups pva (wood) glue
C. 3/4 cup water
D. 2 tbl glycerine
|
But then you write:
... "Sitr until gelatine crystals and cream of tartar is dissolved"

Would you please clarify what the ingredients / instructions are?
sabu.dawdy1 year ago
i made porcelain clay with recipe 3 in microwave.. however my dough did not cook completely as my bowl was oval .. today is the second day of that dough. it is pliable but its sticky slightly. any advice?
jennybotha1 year ago
Didn't go through the steps for the different recipes, as I was only interested in the first one. See you mention gelatine and in the method but not in the ingredients list. How much do you use of these. Do let me know as I'd love to make this for my clay flowers. Thanks
Gomi Romi (author)  jennybotha1 year ago
Thanks for your question, I tested using gelatine and non-gelatine and they later didn't make a difference. I used about 1 tbl diluted in hot water. Later I found out about using mostly glycerine and less water to prevent cracks, so I'd go with glycerine instead of gelatine.
Thanks for sharing that info. So did the clay dry without cracks when you used the glycerine?? Used to make clay flower arrangements for the family and friends wedding and celebration cakes i p o icing ones. ( that way the flowers last forever ) Now want to make a lot again for my display cabinet--- just for the fun of it. Thanks again, Gomi.
I'm excited to try this recipe! I do have a question though... when you leave the clay out overnight, is it covered? Uncovered? Airtight? I just want to do all I can to set this up for success and I wasn't positive how to leave it overnight. Your recipe is appreciated and as I said, I'm very excited to try it! Thanks for your submission!

-Christian
Gomi Romi (author)  mrs.cjmurrell2 years ago
Hi there! sorry for the late reply.. I usually cover it with plastic wrap immediately after cooking. A viewer on another site recommends using a lot of glycerine and hardly any water to prevent cracking.
Gomi Romi (author)  mrs.cjmurrell2 years ago
You're welcome! I wrap the clay up with plastic wrap and keep it in the fridge, that way it will last longer. Also a person below said to use glycerine and less water to prevent cracks. I looked at some puppet hands I sculpted last year and its still pretty solid.
freqgirl2 years ago
You said corn flour was the same as corn starch earlier but it isn't. They are two separate and different things. Which one is it exactly, corn starch or corn flour? I want to make sure and buy the correct things before I waste a lot of money trying to make this.
Gomi Romi (author)  freqgirl2 years ago
I would try corn starch first, i think in different countries its different things. I used cornstarch that is finely ground and the dough you make looks very white. It's around 99c for a packet in Australia.
Can I make this without using gelatine?
Gomi Romi (author)  sabaku no gaara2 years ago
Sure, I tried several experimental recipes, it worked without gelatine. I think adding that tiny extra bit of playdough clay helped prevent a lot of shrinkage. Too much of the playdough creates a bumpy, lumpy surface (could've blended it perhaps)
Playdough Clay?
Do you mean plasticine?
Gomi Romi (author)  sabaku no gaara2 years ago
The waterbased clay here
http://www.instructables.com/id/Playdough-Paintings-1/