Methylcellulose alternatives - cheap sizing agents

General discussion area for learning about paper, and the different types available.
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Origami_Hunt
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Re: MC substitutes: starches, gelatine, PVA, etc.

Post by Origami_Hunt »

Hi Alo,

It is true that you need to experiment. Regarding the products, corn and wheat flour are easy to find in supermarkets. Gelatine can be found in the backing section.
For single tissue, I would start trying things in this order: PVA, gelatine, cornflour, tapioca flour.

Hope it works for you.
Last edited by Origami_Hunt on May 27th, 2020, 9:51 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Sugar - Avoid.

Post by Origami_Hunt »

I suspect that simple sugars make the paper lose crispiness when the ambient is humid (or when touched) and brittle when dry, so I decided to treat tissue paper with a sugar solution. The result confirmed what I suspected. The resulting paper did not dry completely and was floppy. Furthermore, it became brittle when I dried it.

The bottom line is that you should check the sugar content of a product if you plan to use it to treat paper. Some recipes ask to add sugar to wheat flour. This would be an error.

Most food products that I have used to seize papers have sugar. For example, the potato flakes I bought have 1.2 grams of small sugars per 100 grams of product; the wheat and corn flours have less than 0.2 grams per 100 grams; the semi-skimmed milk powder has 49 grams!; the unsweetened soy drink has less than 0.5 grams; pure gelatine has no carbohydrates.

EDIT: On the other hand, it might be that the water retention property of table sugar (sucrose) can be put to good use. I am going to add it to gelatine to see whether it removes the plastic feeling that gelatine gives to tissue paper. Perhaps I will try it with PVA, that has the same problem.

Image

Updated the 1st of June 2020

Index of sizing agents
Last edited by Origami_Hunt on January 2nd, 2021, 11:30 am, edited 10 times in total.
Alo
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Re: MC substitutes: starches, gelatine, PVA, etc.

Post by Alo »

Thanks for the replies. I'll start experimenting !
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Re: MC substitutes: starches, gelatine, PVA, etc.

Post by Alo »

I have some questions about the gelatine. Should I use powdered gelatine or gelatine leafs.
If gelatine powder do I just have to mix it with water or do I have to boil it in water?
if gelatine leafs how do I "prepare" them so I can treat paper with it ?
Please help me out ?
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How to use gelatine

Post by Origami_Hunt »

I made my tests with leaf but powdered gelatine should be fine.

For powder and leaf, you have to dissolve it in warm water. Do not boil it though. Leave it cool down. It will form a gel. It is easier to apply when is cool but not yet a gel. You can apply a second hand if the resulting paper is not thick enough but this second hand tends to make the paper contract. In these cases, I would prefer double tissue as almost all of my recipes work well with double tissue paper.

Gelatine produces very crispy paper with a plastic feeling but if you use too much the paper will warp. While the effect is not important for double tissue, it can be for single tissue.

I have just found that you can avoid warping and the plastic feeling adding a bit of PVA to gelatine. While both PVA and gelatine separately produce a plastic feeling that you may not like, the mixture produces a paper that is resistant but without the plastic feeling.

I am trying several things to improve the recipe. Also, keep in mind that MC works very well for single sheet tissue paper.

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Index of sizing agents
Last edited by Origami_Hunt on January 2nd, 2021, 11:04 am, edited 3 times in total.
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Gelatine and PVA. Recommended.

Post by Origami_Hunt »

Gelatine is sometimes sensitive to the moisture in your hands. Also, the paper is crispy but has a plastic feeling.
You can cure both problems adding a bit of PVA.

Recipe for double tissue

6 grams of gelatine.
One-quarter of a pint of water.
Warm it up until the gelatine dissolves.
Let it cool down and add 1 teaspoon of PVA before it forms a gel.

How to apply it

Line up the two sheets of paper.
Paint the top paper with the gelatine-PVA liquid. It will permeate through both sheets.
Let it dry
Apply a second hand when dry if you require a stronger paper.

Where to find gelatine?

In the backing section of supermarkets.

EDIT:

This paper is brilliant. Really strong. It is going to be good for models with curves; models that require some tension. I folded Komatsu's owl with a 15 x 15 cm square.

Image Image


Last meaningful edit: the 3rd of June 2020

Index of sizing agents
Last edited by Origami_Hunt on January 2nd, 2021, 11:10 am, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: MC substitutes: starches, gelatine, PVA, etc.

Post by 1_kg »

Hey there origami_Hunt. could you share a picture of how the papers you made reacts to folds. In the specific order to help clarify as I feel your descriptions are great but a pictorial or video source could really help :
1) ability to reverse folds on the same crease
2) ability of paper to hold the fold ( crisp aspect of paper)
3) ability in making complex models that require a lot of collapsing
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Pictures and videos

Post by Origami_Hunt »

I was going to take some pictures and some videos, but I got busy re-opening our part of the university.
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Ryujin 3.5 folded using double tissue treated with rice paste

Post by Origami_Hunt »

An example of what is possible to do: Kamiya's Ryujin folded using double tissue treated with rice paste (folded by Little Origami Gemius):




Index of sizing agents
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Re: MC substitutes: starches, gelatine, PVA, etc.

Post by Gerardo »

Hi Origami_Hunt. One question, which substance is probably best for holding the pose of the folded model for various years?
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Re: MC substitutes: starches, gelatine, PVA, etc.

Post by Origami_Hunt »

Hi Gerardo,

If you mean once the model is folded, probably the easiest is PVA. Here you have a video by FearlessFlourish (Fearless GT in the forum):



If you fold the model using double tissue treated with any of the starches, you can shape it with water. Models keep the pose when dry.

If you need extra strength, make double tissue with starch and shape it with PVA diluted with water.

If you are going to fold a large model such a life-size pig, squirrel, toucan, etc, make double tissue treated with corn starch and PVA:water (50:50); the resulting paper is quite strong. Shape it with water or PVA.
Last edited by Origami_Hunt on September 4th, 2020, 10:24 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: MC substitutes: starches, gelatine, PVA, etc.

Post by OrigamiasaEnthusiast »

Sorry everyone. Haven't been active. I made my first sheet of Db Tissue according to your instructions, but it came out nice. I'm gonna try to fold that katydid.
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Re: MC substitutes: starches, gelatine, PVA, etc.

Post by Origami_Hunt »

Double tissue is probably a bit thick for the katydid, but it can be done.
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Re: MC substitutes: starches, gelatine, PVA, etc.

Post by OrigamiasaEnthusiast »

Yeah,
thanks,
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Egg-white powder

Post by Origami_Hunt »

Egg-whites are mostly ovo-albumin (a protein). This produces thin double-tissue paper. It is not as crispy as the paper produced using gelatine, but this may be a good thing. Sometimes gelatine tissue-paper can be very plasticky.


Probably good paper for insects.

Recipe to produce double tissue:

Dissolve 5 grams of egg white power in a quarter of a teacup of water (enough water to cover a typical tissue sheet).
Stir it. You do not need to warm it up.
Paint a clean surface with the egg white water.
Put two sheets of tissue paper together.
Lay them on top of the wet surface.
Allow the egg-white water permeate through the sheets of paper.
Paint the rest of the egg-white water over the tissue paper.
Or use it as you would use methylcellulose.
I have also used it to make Aitoh washi shojigami paper foldable.

Where can I find egg white powder?

Usually in the backing section of the supermarket. British Tesco sells four sachets of 5 grams per £1.2. One sachet allows you to produce a 45 cm x 75 cm double tissue paper.
Image
Use sachets to give this a try. However, I would buy it in bulk, to get it cheaper. Amazon sells bags of 500 grams (enough for 100 sheets) for £13 (MC costs about £22 per 500 grams).

Index of sizing agents
Last edited by Origami_Hunt on December 28th, 2020, 5:29 pm, edited 15 times in total.
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