ZOE can be mixed with a spatula on a paper pad or on a glass or ceramic pad.
It is important to mix it extremely thick.
The best way I can describe it is that it should be mixed so thick that it can be rolled into a ball and rolled across the counter top.
It is next to impossible with the devices available in a typical dental office to weigh the power and liquid accurately enough to get a proper mix and thus we lapse back into simply saying, "Read Thick."
Another way to mix it is to cut off the finger of a latex rubber glove, turn it inside out to put any powder, talc or corn starch on the outside.
Then a teaspoon or so of powder is spooned into the finger and drops of eugenol are added. Then the finger is pinched closed and massaged working the powder into the liquid.
If the ZOE is too thin it will stick to the latex. If it is too thick it crumbles.
Once a thick mix is obtained, it can be dumped out on a surface to begin loading the syringe.
It is not advised that you mix ZOE this thick on a paper pad as it is very easy to incorporate paper fibers in the mix which is enough to obstruct a 30 gauge needle.