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Making clay last?

Discussion in 'Beginners' started by SWIFFY, Jun 7, 2012.


    SWIFFY Member

    Whats the best way to keep your clay lasting? Whether it be potters clay or critter clay... I dont use it up that fast. Should I refridgerate it? Just bag it tight and keep it moist?

  2. depends on how long your talking about.
    few days good tight seal
    few weeks tight seal & refrigerate.
    few months seal and freezer.

  3. George

    George The older I get, the better I was.

    I keep mine on the workbench in a plastic bag. After I've finished using it, I take a spray bottle filled with water and spritz it down a bit before closing the bag. This "sweats" the clay and keeps it moist.

    An idea I shared long ago about reclaiming your dried out clay might help. Go to the Dollar Store and buy a cheap box cheese grater. Take your clay and shred it on the grater just like cheese. Spritz each layer of clay with warm water and seal it in a bag. The clay will rehydrate completely and you can save your grater for the next time.
  4. ortegageno

    ortegageno Active Member

    I'm in the same boat. I buy my critter clay at the show once a year (25 lbs) and it will last me all year. But this last batch is getting moldy on me and I do as George said earlier. Spray a mist in the bag and seal it up. Maybe I will cut the next batch in half and freeze it.
    Regards, Geno
  5. Mark in IL

    Mark in IL New Member

    I keep my potter's clay in the bag then put it in a large tupperware like container. I will then moisten a towel - not soaking wet just well damp - and put it in the container with the clay. This has worked great for me.

    If I had a large amount of Critter Clay - I would only thaw out what I ccould use at the time and then freeze the rest.

    SWIFFY Member

    Wonderful! So it does work to freeze it!

    The grater is a great idea George. Ive had the drying problem with critter clay and molding problem with the potters clay!

    Thanks for the pointers fellas!
  7. tt

    tt Licensed Taxidermist,Hunter,Trapper,and Fur Bearer

    X2 This is what I do
  8. Cole

    Cole Amateur Taxidermist

    I've been freezing critter and potters clay for years, works for me.
  9. ortegageno

    ortegageno Active Member

    Hey there Cole, congrats on getting your mounts into the Research catalog. I especially like that sitting fox. Good job.
    Regards, Geno
  10. Randy Miller

    Randy Miller Active Member

    Also keep in mind that if a 25lb block lasts all year you may not want to freeze it in one block, takes longer to thaw when You want to use it. Cut it into smaller blocks then freeze. Easier to get to when you want it.
  11. George

    George The older I get, the better I was.

    If we all weren't so damned lazy and sold into the "snap together taxidermy" era, we'd simply order the powdered clay and make up only as much as we needed. We wouldn't worry about mold, mildew, or freezing. Shipping would be a helluva lot cheaper as well.
  12. atvgranny

    atvgranny Member

    George I have never or for that matter even heard of powdered clay, where can it be purchased? thanks Donalee
  13. Cole

    Cole Amateur Taxidermist

    I know at least one supplier carries it, I don't remember which one. Clay is cheap enough, I don't need to mix it myself.
  14. atvgranny

    atvgranny Member

    Thanks Cole I will check them out :)
  15. joeym

    joeym Old Murphey

    I'm gonna be lazy til my dying day, LOL! I've mixed enough of it to clog my last sinus full of dust. Found a local guy who makes the bricks for pottery. Now, he can deal with the dust! I wrap a moist towel around a brick if it begins to stiffen too quickly on me. I found that if I twist the bag shut, then turn it upside down so that the weight of the brick seals it off, the brick will not lose much moisture.
  16. JE

    JE Well-Known Member

    I had a large bag of potters clay for over a year, and just recently started to use it. It looks just like it did when I bought it, (I bought two and the other is used).
    If relatively uncontaminated I re use clay that is used for dams/molds etc by putting in a sealed bag with a little water and leaving it for a few days, then a good kneading brings it back together.
  17. roundyracer

    roundyracer been to the mountain and seen the elephant.usmc 68

    I bought a 25 lb bag at Dixieland 3 years ago to try and have about 10 lbs left.It was in the fridge untill 2 months back as Ive also got other brands.I have tested it after doing nothing to it except move it out of the way and it works fine.Kinda surprises me .
  18. michael p.

    michael p. Getting better with age :)

    I go throught a couple hundred pounds of potters clay a year. I like it real soft so I wet down an old t-shirt, slide the clay inside the t-shirt and then the t-shirt inside the plastic bag. Works good for me.