How to Process a Partial Denture in Less Than One Hour

Reprinted from LMT 's March 2010 issue
How to Process a Partial Denture
in Less Than One Hour
OVER THE YEARS, one of the laboratory procedures that has created
stress and required extra time has
been investing and divesting partial dentures, especially because
there was always the possibility
of damaging the frame or breaking a clasp.
I’ve developed a technique
that makes this process easier.
I use a putty matrix made from
Heraeus’ Palapress vario, a rapid-cure acrylic for partial and
full dentures. It has the technical
properties of heat-curing acrylic,
and color stability thanks to an
ammon-free acceleration system. When cured, the material
and seemingly disappear in the
patient’s mouth. It offers a great
working time, flows into the smallest saddle areas bubble free, and is
easy to polish and for the patient to
keep clean.
For additional information
on Palapress vario, please
contact Heraeus Kulzer at
800-431-1785 or visit the
website at
has less residual monomer than heatcured acrylic (see graph below).
Palapress vario features a complex blend of cadmium-free, nontoxic pigments that are esthetic
Craig Nelson, AAS, CDT,
has owned several laboratories and is currently
the technical manager for
Heraeus Kulzer.
0 Days
5 Days
10 Days
15 Days
20 Days
25 Days
Percent of residual monomer comparison, in days
STEPS 1 & 2 Wax the case
in the usual manner. If
you have a distal-free end,
make sure you have some
land area in the posterior
for the matrix to rest on
to ensure the occlusal dimension doesn’t change.
STEPS 3, 4 & 5 When
you’re preparing to
make the matrix,
keep in mind that
the end result will
only be as accurate
as the matrix. Select
a firm silicone lab
putty; CutterSil Putty
Plus from Heraeus is
excellent. Measure
the hardener and
mix with your hands.
STEP 6 Begin
STEP 7 The matrix
applying the
putty at one
end of the case,
making sure
you capture
all the facial
contours and
must cover the facial
and occlusal surfaces of the teeth.
Extend the matrix to
the adjacent teeth
to create an index
to locate the matrix
back to the model.
STEP 8 Incorporate
the lingual of the
teeth and just below
the teeth to catch
the contour of the
lingual waxup. The
matrix ends on the
lingual side just below
the teeth, leaving a
portion of the wax
exposed which is the
area into which you
pour the acrylic.
STEP 9 Remove the matrix.
STEP 10 Boil the
wax from the
model and teeth,
and place the teeth
in the matrix. Put
just a dot of Super
Glue® on an incisal
edge or two cusp
tips—one lingual
and one buccal—
to keep the teeth
from shifting as the
matrix is placed
back on the model.
STEP 11 Before
placing the
matrix with the
teeth back on
the model, don’t
forget the separator (I recommend Aislar) or
tin-foil substitute
and then replace
the frame.
STEPS 12 & 13
STEP 14 Mix
the Palapress
vario; the acrylic
has great flow
and, by capillary
action, flows
even to the
smallest single
anterior lateral
flange with no
air bubbles and
no vents.
Carefully place the
matrix with the
teeth back on the
model then secure
it with a rubber
band. Be careful
not to distort the
matrix; use just
enough tension to
hold it in place.
STEP 15 Fill the cavity from either
the mesial or distal of the opening, allowing the acrylic to
flow into the mold and
minimize trapped air.
Once the matrix is full,
immediately put it in the
curing unit at 55oC with
30 lbs of pressure for 30
minutes and then recover
the partial by removing
the matrix. Remove the
flash by grinding on the lingual and polish the appliance.