The Acrylic Roller – An Essential Polymer Clay Tool

Essential Polymer Clay Tools - Acrylic RollerVideo #496: For beginners, this acrylic hand rolling tool can even get you by if you don’t have a pasta machine yet.

Topics Covered In This Video:

  • Must Have Polymer Clay Tools.
  • A Polymer Clay Acrylic Roller is one of those essential polymer clay tools that every clayer should start with.
  • It’s a tool that you will also continue to use as your skills with polymer clay advance.
  • Acrylic Rod 1″ Diameter, 8″ Long, polished smooth.
  • Several companies sell them including Sculpey, Staedtler (Fimo) and AMACO.
  • Perfect for rolling flat, smooth sheets of polymer clay.
  • Also used for reducing canes.
  • Some people use the sides of glass bottles, round pens or wooden rolling pins.
  • Acrylic Roller advantages are: Glassy smooth; Non-reactive surface; Non-stick;  Easy clean; Large 8″ length; Nice weight for rolling.
  • You should not use a wooden rolling pins. The disadvantages include: Wood grain leaves marks on the clay; Wood absorbs oils in clay; Wood grain swells from oils in the polymer clay; Clay sticks to wood.
  • Some Plastic Rollers will react to clay and cause it to stick. So watch for that if you don’t buy a roller that is sold for use with polymer clay.
  • Acrylic Brayer Option: Nice to have addition to the acrylic roller; Half the size at 4″ rod length; One hand operation; Nice for reducing canes; But harder to find.
  • Your acrylic roller will be a great investment… you’ll have it forever and use it often!

Do you have any suggestions for videos on tips, techniques or products you would like to learn more about? Let me know in the comments section below!

My goal is to help you to learn quicker and easier ways to bring up the professionalism in your polymer clay art.

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Looking forward to hearing from you!

Cindy Lietz SignaturePolymer Clay Tutor
  1. Barbara Como, 10 March, 2014

    Hi Cindy I have used both types of tumblers. I personally like the vibrabrating tumbler best. I can see what is happening in the tumbler , I usually run the bead about 2 days. I put it out in the garage and hardly hear it. I have the smaller tumbler. If I remember it works with about 3 lb. total. I dont weigh anything I check to see if its tumbleing if not I take for rock or beads out. the bead come out silky smooth. I am going to try three days someday.

  2. Barbara Como, 10 March, 2014

    Sorry dont know what happened did not mean to send the message yet. I have a question about ear wires . I like to make my own. the problem I have is wareing them they come out of my ears. No matter what adjustment I make large or small. does anyone have this happen . I would like to see a lesson on how to make ear wires that hook closed something like the little wire one that sort of hook behind a little wire. I know I dont write oftem I like to stay sort of in the background but I am watching and reading. I do apreciate all that you and Dug do. Love the videos . Cindy you seem like a natural in from of the camera. Thanks Barb .

  3. Cindy Lietz, 12 March, 2014

    Hi Barbara, thanks for your feedback on the vibratory tumblers. I would like to get one if/when my tumbler dies. Many people have said they really like them!

    In regards to the ear wires with the hook (Kidney Ear Wires), I should do one in a tutorial sometime. Some people have trouble with earrings popping out and they offer a great solution. Another option is to get those clear silicone ear nuts to slide onto the back of the ear wire after you have put it through your ear. They are cheap and they will save you from losing your favorite pair of earrings!

    Thanks again for popping by! It is lovely to hear from you!

  4. Janice H, 10 March, 2014

    I have to say that I have been watching you on UTUBE and you do a great job!

  5. Tante Sherry, 11 March, 2014

    Hi Cindy – just wanted to say your crocus lariat looks fabulous ! Looking forward to finding some pretty stones to make one for myself:)

  6. Michelle A, 11 March, 2014

    Hey Cindy, congrats on having your idea published in the magazine. Way to go, that’s so cool!!!

  7. Juztice F, 11 March, 2014

    I am new to working with clay, and your tutorials are giving me the tools and ideas I need to be successful. I LOVE working with polymer clay. Best invention ever. As I watch your vid’s, I am thinking of many ways to use the different techniques. Thank you for making these video’s. Please keep them coming!

  8. Dixie Ann, 12 March, 2014

    Hi Cindy, nice to see your bucket ended up in the magazine. Congrats!
    I also have both of these acrylic rollers but have a question on the 8″ one. The rod is cracking and chipping on the ends. It doesn’t get thrown around or abused so I don’t understand why it is doing this. My brayer is also just starting to do this on one end. I keep them clean and wipe them down with a baby wipe. I even store them in a horizontal position. Any idea what is causing this? It never does it while I am using it and I don’t see any pieces that would get in the clay sheet and I have never found any in my clay. It is probably 3-4 yrs old and it does get used a lot. I finally taped the ends with masking tape, don’t know if that will help but am worried a piece might fall off and get in my clay piece. Is this breaking and cracking normal?

  9. Cindy Lietz, 16 March, 2014

    Hi Dixie Ann, Do you store your roller in a place where it gets hot or is exposed to a lot of sunshine? I have heard that heat and UV Rays can effect this type of roller. My roller is probably 8 years old and it only has a few tiny lines on each end. Nothing actually chipped or cracked though. It might be a good thing to run by Polyform and see if it has been an issue for people. Thanks for letting us know!

  10. Dixie Ann, 16 March, 2014

    The roller stays in my plastic tool bin in my studio which is 70 degrees all year round in the lower level of my home so heat or uv is not an issue. I will take your suggestion though and see if I can get a response from Polyform.

  11. Neesha Livingstone, 19 January, 2017

    I use Premo and am wondering why it is sticking to my acrylic roller and pasta machine ? Am I using too thin a sheet or is it too warm ? I am trying to make skinner blends and some basic canes. How thick should I have my sheets for making canes and skinner blends ? Love your videos. Thank you

  12. Cindy Lietz, 19 January, 2017

    I wonder if your clay needs to be leached out a little? It sounds like it is too soft. It really shouldn’t be that sticky. Just type soft polymer clay into the search box at the top of the page and you should be able to finds some past posts that will help you out. Good luck!

  13. Madison L, 19 August, 2018

    Hi Cindy, I had finally just bought a acrylic roller after a long time using other things to roll my clay. When I was leaving the store though I saw a polyethylene plastic rolling pin with rings on it as well for measuring. I’m now debating on getting that one instead. Have you ever used any of the polyethylene rolling pins at the craft store like the white Wilton one? They’re meant for fondant but I read that the plastic is ok to use with polymer but is there a difference with sticking maybe? And the acrylic roller I bought was the craft smart brand one for 7$ bc the sculpey wasn’t there but the measurements of the roller is the same as sculpeys and acrylic as well. Do you think there’s really a difference besides price for this? Sorry for all the questions I’m just really unsure of what to do!

  14. Dixie Ann Scott, 20 August, 2018

    Madison the Wilton white roller is actually better than the acrylic. I have used both and the Wilton works better, doesn’t stick and won’t crack like the acrylic.

  15. Cindy Lietz, 20 August, 2018

    Thanks Dixie Ann that is excellent to know! I have a Wilton roller but have only used it for fondant. Since I have an acrylic roller for clay already, I haven’t wanted to use my Wilton one for anything but food. (So chances are I wouldn’t have tested it out on clay anytime soon.) SO it is great to know it works so well. I will make sure to pass that along!

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