Instructables

Doodle Earrings (Jewelry Charms) by Recycling #6 plastic (Make your own shrinky dinks!)

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Step 4: Time to cook!

Picture of Time to cook!
Place your colored piece on a square of parchment paper, on a tray in your toaster oven (preheated to about 250 degrees). Watch the magic happen! Don't worry... it will curl up. and curl up again. then finally settle down to the smallest size.

If your oven is already hot, this will happen almost immediately and take maybe 30 seconds to complete the process. Keep watching!

Sometimes, if you have a long skinny piece, it may turn on it's side and curl up. That's fine, just flatten it out when it's done.


 
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jmurray73 years ago
Does melting the plastic not release poisonous toxins into the air? I see that it's a low temperature but I'm still a little concerned since you are technically changing the molecular structure of the plastic by heating it.
DotatDabbled (author)  jmurray73 years ago
As with any project like this where you are melting things, I would suggest doing this in a well ventilated area or outside if you are concerned about fumes. If you're doing a large number of these, I think we've discussed in the comments getting a cheap toaster oven for this purpose and doing it outside.

rachelmaryb3 years ago
Well, i couldn't flatten them out fast enough, but got some cool results anyways!
inazoo5 years ago
would tin foil work beause i dont have any parchment paper
I use tinfoil it works great. In fact I have had a lot of luck scrunching up the sides of the tin foil to form a pan and just leaving the pan out all together. Because the tinfoil "pan" is so thin, the heat gets to the plastic right away so you can watch it shrink after only a few seconds in a preheated oven.
daughtK4 years ago
At first it didn't seem to do anything, but I went back in a minute and they had curled a little! It was too bad I didn't get to unfurl my first two, but I'll just have to be more patient for future references! xD Thanks for the awesome tutorial!
Leeden4 years ago
Um, I tried this but 30 seconds didn't do anything what-so-ever. :c

I had to use a normal oven but it took minutes until they did anything at all. Such a long time made me weary to keep them in too much longer after they fell the first time.
DotatDabbled (author)  Leeden4 years ago
As with any time that you're working with 'unknown' materials (ie recycled from trash!) sometime you might get a dud.  I tried this with some cool black plastic labeled #6 one time, but it didnt work. 

I would guess your plastic was too thick or just manufactured in a different way.

Try again with another sample.  (and always do a test piece with scrap prior to spending a ton of time on making something cool, to find out your material doesn't perform as expected.)
Macarena4 years ago
Will wax paper work?
DotatDabbled (author)  Macarena4 years ago
Maybe, but I would be a little concerned the wax might melt.  I'd try a test piece first. 
k-k-b4 years ago
Is it 250 degrees Fahrenheit or 250 degrees Celsius?
DotatDabbled (author)  k-k-b4 years ago
Farenheit..  So a very low oven.