Avoid contaminating your clay in the pasta machine with other colours of clay. | Cara Jane Polymer Clay Avoid contaminating your clay in the pasta machine with other colours of clay. | Cara Jane Polymer Clay

Avoid contaminating your clay in the pasta machine with other colours of clay.

Posted on March 27, 2010

I am sure some of you know this already but I only just worked it out so I thought I would share it in case some of you don’t know either.

I clean my pasta machine with a baby wipe between colours of clay. I wipe  the underside of the rollers (underneath the machine) where the crumbles sometimes collect and I wipe the top whilst turning the handle to make sure the rollers are clean. Sometimes though I still get annoying streaks of colour across my clay and I couldn’t work out where they were coming from. I decided it was time to clean my pasta machine. My husband took it apart and cleaned it for me. Great!

Not  long after that a purple streak appeared on my white clay! Horror it had only just been taken apart and thoroughly cleaned! I played around trying to work out where the clay could possibly be coming from. I turned the handle to rotate the rollers backwards and there was my answer!

Pasta machine with stray purple clay on the rollers
I checked it out and if you turn the rollers backwards you get little stray bits of clay pretty much everytime. I am guessing my contamination comes when I inadvertantly rotate the rollers the wrong way a little. I guess it comes from the scrape plates at the bottom (where the crumbles collect on the outside).
Now I have incorporated rolling the rollers backwards as part of my cleaning routine and I haven’t had any contamination issues since.


  1. Hi, I think I’m going to love your blog – I’ve just started experimenting with polymer clay and my pasta machine has seized up completely. I can’t see any way to take it apart, maybe because I bought a cheap one!! I’ll have to find a better one and be more careful with it, I think I’m going to find some good tips here so thanks in advance!

  2. Pam that happened to my friends pasta machine and my husband managed to take it apart for her and found it was to do with the 2 cogs inside which go between the handle and the rollers not meshing together properly. He made it work a bit better with a washer but he’s the type of guy who can fix anything.
    There are plenty of instructions for cleaning pasta machines on the internet – they may help you work out how to take it apart. I hope you manage to fix it or get a new one although you don’t strictly need one it does make life a lot easier especially if you are doing cane work.
    Enjoy your time playing with polymer clay there are so many different things you can do with it!

    Thanks for you optimism about me providing you with some good tips – I hope I can!

  3. Thank you for this Cara. I´ve been using tissue paper under the rollers to get the clay off. In time there are a lot on the scrapers. Once a year I take the machine apart and clean the scrapers with wiping alcohol. That makes a big difference to me.

  4. well now…i just surfed on into your blog while looking for clues to lentil beads and what did i find? a bonanza!!! fabulous stuff, m’dear! i’ll bookmark you and be back regularily.

    the comments about clay clogging up pasta machines puzzle me because although my machine has seen very light use due to lots of illness it has still processed a good deal of clay. i *don’t* use wipes or towels between colors and i have only once tried to reach up underneath it and clean with next to no black streaks or clay falling out on me. maybe someday soon when i’m well enough to get back to my clay table the motor for my machine will fall off and because i have shoulder and back problems it won’t matter a darn if i do have clay tidbits in my rollers !

    but seriously, i am so impressed with this blog and i expect to spend a great deal of time drooling over its content. thanks so much for sharing this way and being honest enough to give people like (hmmm) Desiree (?) their due.

    cheers from the frozen prairies of Canada,

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