How to make Roma Plastilina modeling clay

Written by rachael muldrow
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How to make Roma Plastilina modeling clay
Clay isn't just for kids; make a batch of your own professional grade sculpting clay. (coloured clays image by Joe Houghton from Fotolia.com)

Roma Plastilina is an oil-based modelling clay, similar to Plasticine, manufactured by the Spainsdh company, JOVI. Because it is easy to work oil-based clays into fine details, it is commonly used to help create moulds. However, most people would know oil-based clays because of their use in stop-animation -- also known as "claymation" -- films and advertisements. This is because the oil content allows the clay to remain permanently malleable. While the quality of shop-bought oil-based clays is reliable, they are sometimes cost-prohibitive. If you are up for experimentation, you can use a simple recipe to create your very own version of the fine Roma Plastilina clay found in art supply shops.

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Things you need

  • 60 g (2 oz) Old Mine #4 ball clay
  • 18 g (2/3 oz) cheese wax (clear)
  • 12 g (0.4 oz) petroleum jelly
  • 7 g (1/4 oz) baby oil
  • Confectionery thermometer
  • Deep cooking pot, such as a turkey fryer
  • Ohaus triple beam gram scale

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Put the wax in a deep pot and heat until the temperature on the thermometer reaches 121 degrees C (250 degrees F).

  2. 2

    Add the petroleum jelly and baby oil.

  3. 3

    Add the powdered clay slowly and reduce the temperature until the thermometer reads 82.2 degrees C (180 degrees F).

  4. 4

    Turn heat to low and stir every couple of hours for 6 or more hours.

  5. 5

    Remove clay from the heat at 32.2 degrees C (90 degrees F).

  6. 6

    Knead clay until smooth and store in an airtight container.

Tips and warnings

  • This recipe will yield a batch of clay about the size of a golf ball; simply double the recipe to increase the yield.
  • Do not try to make this clay in a crock pot.

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