Heatproofing a Stockpot with Sugru

16 Sep 2011

sugru_2

Thought I'd share a bit of sorta crafty, sorta science-y tomfoolery we've had going on over here this week. (I've always wanted to use the word "tomfoolery" on this blog!)

So, a while back, I did a post on CRAFT about this amazing bouncy digital camera. Go ahead and check out the little video; I'll wait.

The magic ingredient of this project is Sugru, which is a silicone clay. It sticks to lots of surfaces, molds in any shape you need, and then air dries - so you can use it to fix, remodel and hack all kinds of household objects. When this stuff is fully cured, it not only resists impacts, it's dishwasher safe and heat-resistant to about 350 degrees.

sugru_1

Anyway. When I did that post, Sugru's inventor, Jane ní Dhulchaointigh, sent me a nice email and offered me a little Sugru sample to mess about with. And I was all, "Hmm, let me think about tha - YES, THANK YOU!"

I went all over this apartment looking for the perfect item to improve with Sugru, and eventually settled on this stockpot. It's a gift from K's mom, and I love it and use it all the time. The handles, however, aren't heatproof, so I thought see if Sugru could do away with the need for pot holders.

sugru_3

The clay is very soft, like a cross between Play-Doh and cookie dough. It comes in a range of colors, so you can mix them together if you like, or create interesting marbled effects.

First, I rolled some out and smooshed it over the lid handle. There was a lot of anal-retentive smoothing, which in the end only resulted in minimal smoothness. If I'd been thinking, I'd have pressed something flat over the whole thing once it was covered.

(Also: Focus FTW!!)

sugru_4

Then, I made some covers for the side handles. And then, I let the whole thing sit. It takes about 24 hours for the clay to fully cure. There are some fumes while you're working with it, so use a well-ventilated area. But they dissipate pretty quickly and didn't bother me at all during the dry time.

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OK, then it was time to put this bad-boy to the test. My original plan had been to cook something in the pot, but that didn't really work out. So I just boiled some water. I let it boil for fifteen minutes or so, letting the pot get good and hot.

And you know what? Those Sugru-ed handles are now nice and heatproof! I can grab right onto them and they aren't even warm.

sugru_gallery

I should say, though, that this is far from being the most original Sugru project in the world. If you want to see ingenuity in action, you should pop over to the Sugru Gallery, where people all over the world have been sharing the things they've done with this clay. It's amazing!

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Comments

Very cool project- I had not idea this kind of clay existed! WOW... the possibilities.


Oh what a lovely post. Such possibilities...


That stuff is fascinating. Love that your pots are heatproof now, clever!


They had me at "repair expensive bicycle parts." I think with 3 little boys, I need to just do up my whole house in this stuff.


Oh now I really want some of that stuff!


Very clever!
So, it's safe to go from touching the Sugru once dried to food? I know that with Polymer clay, they tell you to wash your hands before touching your food... I know I couldn't do that each time I touched my pot :)


That's an excellent question, Stacey! I did some Googling, and here's what I found:

http://getsatisfaction.com/sugru/topics/is_sugru_food_safe
http://www.instructables.com/community/Is-sugru-safe/
http://sugru.com/pdfs/FORMEROLsugru_MSDS_Oct09.pdf

Seems to me that the risk is minimal, but it makes sense to avoid using if for objects that come into direct contact with food. For my project, well, I wash my hands constantly as I'm cooking, and the lid and handles I treated never come into contact with anything I eat.


Wow, never knew this existed! I need me some sugru!


"anal-retentive smoothing" - now, that's a phrase well-turned!

That stuff looks very cool - thanks for sharing.


So great! So smart. Great use of the Suguru.

Although what really got me to click and read this post was your awesome use of the word Tom Foolery! I love that phrase :)


Heh! Tomfoolery FTW!!


AH - don't feel silly - my bad for using nerdy initialisms without explaining. FTW stands for For the Win. It's an expression of (sometimes ironic) victory!


Eeek! LOVE IT! but feel silly because I don't know what FTW stands for. sigh.


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