Complete Product Review
NeverKnead Polymer Clay Conditioning Machine
NEVERKnead is a polymer clay conditioning machine that hit the market in 2014 and had it’s debut at the IPCA Conference “ARCHES” in August.
What Is Conditioning?
One of the things that is essential to quality workmanship, strength, and durability of clay is proper conditioning. Just because clay might feel “soft” does not mean that it is conditioned. Conditioning polymer clay lines up the ‘polymers’ to make the clay strong. Unless you want a brittle piece of art, you must be sure that each and every time you use clay that it is fully conditioned into a workable state.
Often it is this conditioning process that most polymer artists hate, especially when using tough clays like Kato or Cernit polymer clay. Even softer clays like Premo! or Pardo take quite a bit of conditioning to get them ready to work. For people with arthritis, without pasta machines (and even those with pasta machines), or those who lack strength, conditioning clay can be a chore and in many cases a barrier to working with polymer.
How to Use the NeverKnead:
The NEVERKnead takes a little bit of assembly out of the box. However, in less than 5 minutes you can have your NEVERKnead set up and ready to go. Watch the video below to see a brief demonstration. Product review, pro’s, con’s, and additional information can be found in the text below.
- Deb, the owner of NeverKnead, is extremely gracious, kind, & great to work with. There was a slight problem with my NeverKnead and with one phone call she corrected the issue and sent 2 follow-up emails to be sure the situation was handled as I had expected.
- The base plate that your clay sits on to be conditioned is a high quality plate. I have heard that people had received broken plates during transit. That was not an issue with my machine at all. The plate was well secured & arrived intact.
- Helps to condition old, crumbly, & stiff polymer clay. Indeed this machine does what it claims it will … help you to condition polymer clay. It takes the hard work out.
- Lifetime Warranty. There in and of itself is a fantastic offer. BUT, Deb believes in her product so much that you even have a 90 day risk-free guarantee!
- Please do not be misled by other reviews or claims from others, there is still work on your part even with this machine. It will not reduce the amount of time that you spend conditioning; Rather, it will reduce the effort, which is the biggest and hardest part of the battle.
- Size & Weight. If you have a very small studio, or if you work from your kitchen table, this size of this clay conditioning machine may be a problem for you. It weighs almost 20 pounds, but takes up a great deal of space. Due to it’s height, it takes about about time & a half that of a pasta machine.
- Pricetag. This is an expensive tool, hands down. If you want the standard until it will cost you $129, if you want a nice pretty colorful unit (or a custom color like mine), it will cost you $159.
- Must be bolted down. This machine works good freestanding on a counter, however it does bounce around and move while conditioning your clay. It is recommended that you clamp or bolt your NEVERKnead to your work surface.
Pasta Machine Comparison:
Some of you may find this an unfair comparison, however, I have heard it suggested by numerous people that this machine replaces your pasta machine. Let’s take a moment to discuss this. For a really hard, stiff, & crumbly block of clay, this machine is an absolute lifesaver. It will save damage, wear, tear, & grief over using your pasta machine (or a hammer) to condition those absolutely wretched blocks of clay that refuse to cooperate.
However, this machine will in no way replace my pasta machine. It is true that this machine can create a solid color blend. I did run a test experiment on this. It took me approximately 5 minutes to blend clay to make 2 oz. of my new Spruce color. Even the demonstration of this test on NEVERKnead.com takes over 6 minutes to completely blend into a solid color. The exact same blend on my pasta machine took about 4 minutes. Now this being said and all things being fair. I’ve been using a pasta machine for about 6 years … I’ve used a NEVERKnead for about a week. I’m not as agile with the NEVERKnead as I am with my pasta machine.
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Thanks for joining me today,