Step 4: Fridge magnet tentacles

To make the fridge magnet variation you will obviously need a magnet.
You will also need some release agent to remove the magnet prior to baking. I used some KY Jelly, just remember to pull a really big grin at the cashier who sells it to you to see who will blush first.

Start the tentacle cone as usual, but this time when the wide end starts to form press the lubricated magnet into it.

Finish the tentacle as usual and form it into the desired shape.

To remove the magnet take the stack of magnets and place it against the base, they'll stick and you can pull it out, leaving a hole the right size. Once baked you can glue the magnet back in to the hole.

Make four and arrange them on your fridge in interesting patterns.

leafrog5 years ago
I applaud and approve of your invention and use of the word "Tentacular". Bravo!

And way cool project, I'll be making some of these!
Great idea! Great Ible!

I am curious though, why do you remove the magnet before baking?
I have baked magnets with polymer projects several times, without problem. See for instance http://www.instructables.com/id/Posable-Action-Figure-Building-System/

The baking temperature was to low to affect the magnets. They were of the neodymium type. It could be different for other types, but I guess the baking temperature of 110°C is to low for almost any type of magnets to affect them.
Of course you can not microwave them.

Baking with the magnets in place also removes the need to glue them back in. In most cases anyway. If I do need to glue the magnets, I use superglue.
The magnet has a higher thermal conductivity so will heat up faster than the clay. It may cause the surrounding polymer clay to cure faster, which can lead to unsightly blemishes on your model in the end.

Also, you may not notice the drop in strength of your magnets, but i assure you there is one, as you will realign the atomic structure with the heat.

After about a dozen magnets baked together with polymer clay, I never noticed any blemishes. I always use fimo brand polymer clay. It could be sculpey has more  problems with it, as I've read it is more sensitive to overbaking. But still I would be surprised. What could make difference is a difference in thermal transfer between hot air/magnet and hot air/polymer clay, but actually there is no reason to expect that, as in both cases we are talking about smooth surfaced solids. Actually, the thermal capacity probably the most important factor. And the thermal capacity of metals is generally high compared to polymers. And the high internal thermal conductivity means the surface of the magnet does not heat up much faster than the inside. Therefore the whole of the magnet will rather suck up a lot of heat, having the polymer clay bake a litter slower, rather than faster.

And in applications where I realy needed high strength (magnetic joints for a self standing action figure) I did indeed not notice any strenght loss. I guess at 110°C the neodymium magnets are not affected. Magnets in electric motors probably also reach that kind temperatures in for example a number of RC applications. It is well known that electric motors can lose their power when overheating (that is why they are often cooled), but good ones wo'nt yet at 110°C, at least not irreversably.

hughscott55 years ago
Fist off I gotta say that this idea is awesome, I'm seriously fighting the urge to run to the craft store and get clay right now. I was wondering what kind of glue did you use to attach the magnet? Thanks!!