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>Date: Sat, 6 Feb 1999 18:33:36 -0500
>From: "James Purchase" <jpurch at interlog_com>
>Subject: RE: Polymer Clay
>Thomas Connors asked for opinions on using Plastalina Modelling Clay in his
>substrate. this stuff sounds pretty much like Play Dough. I guess he wants
>to form "Artistic Dupla Style Fertilizer Balls"?

>compounding, is where colors, stabilizers, and plasticizers are added. It's
>the plasticizers that give the PVC it's softness and malleability, the
>"clay" feel, and they aid in the heating and fusing at low temperatures.
>last two steps, forming and fusing, are accomplished by the artist when he
>works the clay and makes the item, and then when he bakes it to turn it
>a hard permanent plastic."

These plasticizers - called ftalates - are by some regarded highly dangerous
and wide spread into
every level in ordinary life from food wrap over cosmetics to pesticides and
composit tooth filling material. It is
found in some natural waters too ( as waste from industry).
The degrading to eostrogen alikes is being suspected of causing some kinds
of cancer, reduced seemen quality (mankind and animals) and developing
One of the major problems being that there is so many different formulas of
whitch the effects are very little know. At University of Odense (my town)
research on the effect of the different ftalates on rainbow(?) trout have
being done for a few years now.
Futher it is possible ( Im not sure) that surgeons gloves does not protect
100%, the latex being penetratable for some chemicals.