How to Use Polymorph Plastic

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Polymorph plastic is an exciting, moldable plastic product that has a practically unlimited amount of uses. From robotics components to fine-art projects, this product can be shaped in any way you can think of and retains that shape permanently with a glossy, smooth finish. Known by many names like ODO, Jet-Set, Shape Lock and Friendly Plastic, polymorph is so easy to use, you may find yourself making up excuses to play with it.

  • Choose the grade of polymorph plastic you will need. Different brands carry different grades, but generally speaking, you can choose between re-usable polymorph plastic that can be reheated and re-molded multiple times, a super-durable grade that cannot be reheated or damaged by normal use or household tools, a paintable grade that accepts acrylics and dyes either before or after molding and a machinable grade that can be drilled, sawed, sanded, milled or tapped.

  • Heat an appropriate amount of water to about 160 degrees F. Boiling the water is not only unnecessary, but it may cause the polymorph plastic to become unworkable. To get the water to just the right temperature, use a thermometer.

  • Place larger amounts of polymorph plastic in a bowl of water and put it in the microwave. The water should not come to a boil, and you should never microwave the polymorph plastic without placing it in water.

  • Warm up a few pellets at a time with a hair dryer set on high for extra-small projects.

  • Wait for the plastic pellets to turn clear.

  • Remove the polymorph plastic from the water with tongs. Be sure to wear gloves in case of any splashes.

  • Allow the plastic to cool for about 2 minutes, so you are able to touch it comfortably with your bare hands.

  • Shape the plastic by hand or press it into a mold to form the desired object.

  • Paint or decorate your work with permanent markers or acrylic paints.

  • Insert any objects or create holes and handles while the polymorph plastic is still warm, so it's easy to pierce the plastic. Once it cools, the substance is very tough, and you won't be able to do much with it unless you have the re-workable or machinable grade.

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