Category Archives: Tips

Glass art tips from Stained Glass Express

Color

There is no better time to talk about color than fall in Maine! In the art glass world, we deal with color all the time. What a wonderful industry!

One of the tricks of the trade is knowing how to combine colors. There is a tool called the color wheel to help with this.

The color wheel.

First, you have to “know your colors.”

PRIMARY COLORS: The colors from which all others are made. These colors are Red, Yellow and Blue.

The secondary colors.

Red + Yellow = Orange

Yellow + Blue = Green

Blue + Red = Violet

INTERMEDIATE COLORS: The colors that result from mixing one primary and one secondary color. Red-Orange, Yellow-Green, Blue-Violet, Red-Violet, Yellow-Orange and Blue-Green.

The tertiary color wheel.

TINTS, TONES, SHADES: Made by adding White, Gray or Black.

Tints and shades.

In this industry, we talk about hot (or warm) and cool colors.
Yellow to Red-Violet are warm and Yellow-Green to Violet are cool.

Warm and cool colors.

Color harmonies are colors that go together. This is where the color wheel helps.

COMPLEMENTARY COLORS: They are opposite each other on the color wheel. They are one primary color and the secondary color that is created by mixing the other two primaries. The complementary color to Yellow would be Purple (mix of Blue and Red). If you mix these colors, you may get a muddy color or something on a grayscale. When put next to each other, they create a high contrast. They are a bit tricky to use. Use them when you want something to stand out.

Complementary colors.

TRIADIC HARMONY: Three colors spaced equally apart on the color wheel. These are three colors evenly spaced on the color wheel. They are also very vibrant. Balance them carefully. Let one dominate and the other two accent it.

Triadic harmony.

SPLIT COMPLEMENTARY: A color and the two colors next to its complement on the wheel. This is a variation of the complementary. It is a strong look with high contrast but less so than the complementary. It is easier to use.

Split-complementary colors.

ANALOGOUS: Colors that are next to each other on the wheel. They match well and make for serene and comfortable designs. Good for nature scenes.

Analogous color ranges.

RECTANGLE (TETRADIC): Uses four colors arrange into two complementary pairs. This makes for a very rich color scheme. Watch for a balance between warm and cool colors.

Rectangle (tetradic) color scheme.

SQUARE: Much like the rectangle but with all the four colors evenly spaced around the wheel. This works best if one color dominates. Again, watch the warm and cool color balance.

Square color scheme.

 

Repairing a Crack

Copyright 2019 by The Flow. All rights reserved. This is from the Spring Nature Issue.

They have given us permission to reprint it. It is a except from the book, “Parallels Between Hot Glass and Human Existence”.

The Village Iterate

  • Taking the time to thoroughly reheat a piece in a kiln before repairing a crack will allow you to merely kiss it away with the gentlest of flames. Attempting the same without preheating leads to cracking all the way through, which can cause the piece to fall off the pontil and completely shatter, or melt out of shape and create permanent scarring within the body of the piece, which will require physical removal. This is accomplished by heating the offending area until it is liquid and removing the bad material, then replacing it with new, often creating and undesirable visible artifact of the process.
  • The more frequent the reheats, the hotter, harder, quicker, and sharper they can be. The less frequent they are, the more time each requires in a cooler, gentler flame and greater thoroughness to get the heat to the center of the mass.
  • If you’ve got a long shot at saving a piece, take it. It might work, and the attempt will likely take much, much less time than starting over. And you’ll learn something – perhaps something important.
  • Dig out the crack and fill the gap with new material, then flatten the sport and flame-polish it, all which the glove on the hand you’re holding it with starts smoking and the heat penetrates to your burning fingers. It might work.
  • If it cracks somewhere else while making the attempt, put it in a hot kiln, bring it up to working temp, and hold a torch inside the kiln itself while the plastic handles melt off and your gloves smoke. Check it with a flashlight, and as long as you made some progress, let it soak and do it again and again until you save the piece. It might work!
  • If you’ve got a piece that definitely isn’t going to make it, go ahead and do something interesting with what you do have. What you have is much more advanced and developed and interesting that starting from raw materials, and since it’s terminal, you’re free to
    try . . . anything! It might work!!

You can subscribe to The Flow here: https://www.theflowmagazine.com/subscriptions.html

 

A Guide to Commonly Used Terms in the Art Glass Field

This guide is based on document originally put out by Spectrum Glass in 2000.

This listing of frequently used terms and their brief descriptions includes those which apply to the products of all art glass manufacturers and not just those used in connection with Spectrum Glass. It is written in non-technical language for ease of understanding by the student and non-professional and is not intended to be completely authoritative or all inclusive.

Antique –

  1. Full-Antique: Term applied to art glass produced by the historical mouth-blown cylinder method. The craftsman blows a glass cylinder, which is annealed and cooled. The cylinder is then scored lengthwise, separated, reheated and folded out into a flat sheet. Common characteristics include attractive linear striations and a very pristine surface.
  2. Drawn-Antique: (also called semi-antique, machine-antique or new-antique) A simulated full-antique produced by the Vertical Draw method. The textural striations are mechanically applied. Quality is excellent and cost is less than full-antique. GNA (German New Antique) is a common example.
  3. Scribed-Antique: A simulated full-antique produced by the Double Roll method. The linear striations are scribed into the hot glass surface. Quality is excellent and cost is considerably less than full-antique. Introduced by Spectrum Glass in 1996 under the trade name Artique.

Artique –  (See Scribed-Antique, above.)

Baroque – A machine made “reamy” glass, created by combining glasses of mismatched compositions. The different glasses “oppose” each other when they are stirred together, creating artistic 3-D swirls. A Spectrum exclusive.

Bent (or Slumped) Glass – Glass which has been heated in a kiln from room temperature to a temperature high enough to cause it to soften and slump (sag) into or over a mold. The finished item takes the shape of the mold.

Bevel – Cold glass (usually clear, thick plate) whose edges have been ground and polished to an angle other than 90 degrees. Transmitted light is refracted and a prism-like effect results. Bevels are available in a variety of sizes, shapes and geometric configurations (called “clusters”) for incorporation into leaded glass work.

Came – Channeled strips of lead, zinc or other metal used to bind glass pieces within a design. (See Leaded Glass)

Cast Glass – A glass art medium in which glass is melted in, or melted and poured into a pre-shaped mold to create a finished project.

Cathedral Glass – Describes transparent glass that is monochromatic, i.e., single-color sheet glass, with smooth or textured surfaces.

Catspaw – (Single-roll-forming method) A surface texture resulting from chilling of hot glass on a cool table. The appearance is likened to the paw prints of a cat.

Confetti – Paper-thin elements of glass that can be incorporated into a fused or blown glass design. Also called “shards.”

Copper Foil – Thin, narrow strips of adhesive-backed copper tape used to wrap the edges of glass pieces that have been cut to fit a pattern. Once wrapped, solder is applied, bonding the glass pieces together.  Assembling a stained glass project in this manner is called the “copper foil technique.”  Louis Tiffany is credited with its development.

Crackle – (Blown cylinder method) the hot cylinder of glass is dipped in liquid causing radical, random fissures in the glass.  The cylinder is then reheated and further blown to heal the surface fissures.  Resulting surface resembles the texture of alligator skin.

Dalles – Thick (usually 1”) slabs of cathedral glass.

Dalle De Verre – An art glass medium in which dalles are broken into pieces with a carbon hammer and set in an epoxy base to adhere them in a decorative design. Dependent on large scale for best appearance, they are primarily used in architectural applications such as church walls.

Dichroic – A misnomer, but commonly used to describe glasses that have been coated with one or more ultra-thin crystalline layers of transparent metal oxides, designed to enhance reflections at specific wavelengths of light. The process occurs in a vacuum chamber at elevated temperatures. The resulting effects are striking and brilliant color reflections at varying angles of incidence.

Drapery Glass – Glass sheets with multiple dramatic folds, likened to those in hanging drapes.

Flashed – Glass of one color with a very thin layer of another glass color on one side. Flashed glass is often used for etched or sandblasted glass art.  When sections of the thin color layer are removed, the other color shows through.

Flux – Chemical agent (liquid, gel or paste) used to facilitate the flow of solder and prevent formation of oxides during soldering.

Frit – Ground glass, ranging in particle size from gravel-like to a fine powder. Frit is sometimes used as a raw material in glass manufacture, and sometimes as a coloring agent or for decorative effect in hot glass crafts like blowing and fusing.

Fused Glass – Glass forms produced by placing different pieces of glass in contact with each other in an arranged design, then firing them in a kiln at a temperature high enough to fuse them into one piece of glass.

Fractures & Streamers – In the single-roll process (See Sheet Forming Methods), the glass chips or shards (fractures) and/or glass string (streamers) are arranged on the casting table before the glass is poured, and the thus pressed into the glass sheet as it is formed.

Glob – (See Nugget)

Glue-Chip – A texture created on the surface of cold glass by applying hot animal glue and allowing it to dry under controlled temperature and humidity conditions. As the glue dries and contracts, it chips the glass surface in a natural and attractive pattern, likened to frost on a window pane.

Gold Pink – Common name for colored glasses in the pink/cranberry/fuchsia range that require gold oxide as a coloring agent.

Hand-Cast Sheet Glass – Sheet glass produced by the single-roll method (See Glass Sheet – Forming Methods).

Iridescent – A layer of metallic oxide is bonded to the hot glass surface just after sheet-forming, resulting in a colorful, shimmering effect.

Jewel – A piece of glass that has been cut and faceted or press-molded into a geometric shape like a jewel. Often incorporated into leaded glass artwork.

Leaded Glass – (1) Sheet glass pieces joined together with metal strips, usually made of lead, called “came”.  Solder is applied to the joints of the came to bond the work together. (2) Glass containing lead as a raw material (as in “leaded crystal”).

Mosaic – A picture or decorative design made by setting small colored pieces of glass or ceramic material into a surface using cement or grout as a bonding agent.

Mottled Glass – (See Ring Mottle)

Nugget – A small, irregularly shaped “glob” of glass, flat on the bottom, rounded across the top. Nuggets are made by literally dropping a small amount of molten glass onto a flat surface.  Frequently called “globs,” they are often incorporated into leaded glass artwork.

Opal or Opalescent Glass – Said of any glass into which a material has been introduced at the raw materials stage (usually fluorine or phosphorus), which causes a degree of crystallization to occur, crating opacity in the glass. Reflected light is colorless, therefore white. The degree of opacity (and “whiteness”) is variable depending upon composition and temperatures used in the manufacturing process. White glass is commonly called “opal.”

  • Solid Color Opalescent Glass: Glass which is both colored and crystallized, creating a single color sheet, more opaque than a cathedral. Sometimes called “opalized” glass.
  • Mixed Opalescent Glass: White glass (opal) is mixed with one or more other colors of glass to create a variegated, multi-colored sheet. Light transmission varies with composition. Also called “variegated opalescent,” sometimes “streaky.”

 

Painted Glass – Glass on which special paints (containing frit) have been applied in illustration or decorative pattern and then heated in a kiln to a temperature high enough to fuse the pigments permanently to the glass surface. The modern version of the original medieval “stained glass.”

Pate de Verre – An art glass medium in which powdered glass frits are spread in a decorative design, then fired in a kiln.

Reamy – Descriptive of full-antique glass with a wavy, irregular surface.

Ring Mottle Glass – An opalescent glass in which rates of crystal growth have been controlled to create ring-shaped areas of opacity. The effect is a visual surface mottling.

Ripple – A surface texture, often dramatic, consisting of linear or irregular ripples. Created naturally in some sheet-forming processes, imitated with an embossing roll in others.

Rondel – A mouth-blown piece of glass that has been spun into a circular shape, often irregular. Sometimes incorporated into leaded glass artworks.  Machine-made facsimiles are common, called “pressed rondels.”

Seedy Glass – Glass in which air bubbles are entrapped. Air or gas is injected into the molten glass prior to forming the sheet.

Slump – (See Bent Glass)

Solder – A fusible alloy, usually tin and lead, used to join metallic parts, or the act of applying it. Used to bond metals in both the leaded and copper foil techniques of stained glass work.

Stained Glass – Commonly used to describe any colored flat glass or any object made of such glass joined by metal strips. The term originally applied to the colored or clear flat glass cut to fit an artist’s design, on which details were painted with a brush or pigment. The glass pieces were then heated in a kiln or oven to bond the pigment to the glass surface. This firing makes the painted detail as durable and permanent as the glass itself.  Most religious windows from medieval times until this century were executed in this manner and so the term came to be used first for any architectural application and then for any design in colored flat glass. It is now universally accepted as a convenient general term to define the art, the craft, and the industry.

Streaky Glass – Two or more cathedral glasses mixed together to create a multi-colored glass sheet. Some use this term also to describe Mixed Opalescent glass as defined above.

Stringer – Thin glass strings most commonly used in hot glass work.

Terazzo – A combination of marble, granite, onyx or glass chip in a binder of Portland cement or other resinous material. After curing, the surface is ground to expose the decorative chips.

Textured Glasses –

  • Rolled textures: In rolled glasses (see definitions below) one of the forming rolls is embossed with a texture that is imprinted on the glass as the sheet is formed. This produces glass smooth on one side and textured on the other. Common examples are “hammered”, “granite” and “muffle.”
  • Natural textures: Any textural effect created without mechanical influence or embossed rolls. Includes baroque and waterglass.
  • Cold glass textures: This category includes glue chipping, etching, sandblasting and any other surface treatment performed on the cold glass sheet at room temperature.

 

Waterglass – A Spectrum Glass exclusive. A natural surface texture created by stretching the hot glass sheet while it is still in a malleable state. The result is gentle, rolling waves that resemble the surface of a lake or stream.

Wispy – A Spectrum Glass innovation. Mixed opalescent glass with only thin wisps of white, like lazy cloud trails.

Glass Manufacturing Terms

Annealing – Cooling the formed glass product at a controlled rate of temperature change for the purpose of relieving thermal stress. The appropriate cooling curve varies with glass type and formed shape, especially thickness. Directly related to glass cut ability.

Batch – The mixture of granular raw materials that is prepared and put into the melting furnace to create a given glass. The primary raw materials for clear glass are silica sand, soda ash and limestone.  Cullet is often used.

Continuous Furnace – A glass melting furnace which is continuously full of molten glass. The introduction of batch (raw materials) into the furnace displaces existing molten glass and forces it out of the furnace and through the forehearth to the forming process. The process continues for the life of the furnace.

Cullet – Manufactured glass product that has been broken and crushed in preparation for recycling back through the furnaces. Some glass makers use cullet from other sources or from glass recyclers as a major raw material in their own batches.

Day Tank – A glass melting furnace that is designed to operate on a 24-hour cycle. The batch is added to an empty furnace at a rate that allows it to melt properly, until the furnace chamber is full. Then, after suitable “cookout” has occurred, the molten glass is used to make product. When the furnace is empty, the cycle is repeated.

Forehearth – A shallow chamber through which molten glass passes on its way from a continuous melting furnace to the forming process. The purpose of this chamber is to allow the temperature of the glass to drop from melting temperatures (about 2,700 degrees F) to forming temperatures (about 2,200 degrees F for 1/8”-thick sheet glass).

Lehr – An enclosed chamber through which formed glass products are carried for the purpose annealing.

Pot Furnace – A melting chamber in which one or more ceramic pots are placed. Batch is fed into the individual pots through ports in the chamber walls, and when melted, glass is ladled from the pots via the same ports. Each pot is fairly small. The pot furnace allows the melting of a number of different glass colors (as many as there are pots) at the same time, within a single melting chamber.

Glass Sheet-Forming Methods

Sheet glass types are often by delineated by how the sheet is formed. Thus people speak of “mouth-blown,” “double-rolled,” “drawn glass,” “float glass” and so on.

Blown Cylinder Method – (See Full-Antique)

Single-Roll Method – Molten glass is poured onto a metal table and a single metal roll is used to flatten it into a sheet. Sometimes call “hand cast” sheet glass.

Double-Roll Method – Molten glass is passed between a pair of rotating metal rolls to form the sheet.

Vertical-Draw Method – Molten glass is pulled vertically through a slit in a large one-piece refractory block that is floating on the glass surface. The annealing lehr is mounted vertically over the draw chamber. Drawn glass is generally more pristine than rolled glass because its surface has remained untouched during forming.

Float Process – Molten glass is pulled from the forehearth atop a bath of molten tin. The process produces a perfectly smooth sheet of uniform thickness in high volume. The float process is used to produce virtually all common window glass today, thus the term “float glass.” Not used for art glass production.

Common Glass Coloring Agents

Opal (white) – Fluorine and a high alumina level to cause the fluorine to crystallize to opal

Clear – Sand with very low iron is required plus the absence of contaminants in other ingredients. Cobalt (blue producing) is often added to mask the greenish-brown tint that results from trace iron content.

Amber – Sulfur with carbon.

Lime Green – Chromium oxide.

Emerald Green ­– Chromium oxide with cobalt oxide and copper oxide.

Turquoise – Same basis as emerald with higher ration of cobalt oxide and copper oxide to chromium oxide.

Blue – Cobalt oxide and copper oxide. Different blue shades can be made with each of these used alone.

Purple – Manganese dioxide.

Yellow ­– Cadmium sulphide. Lead Compounds.

Orange – Cadmium sulphide and selenium.

Red – Cadmium sulphide with selenium in higher proportion than for orange. Selenium Oxide.  Gold Chloride.

Violet – Nickel oxide.

 

Creative vs. Organized

Photo courtesy of Practical Psychology

Should the title be “creative vs organized” or “getting your left and right brain to get along?”

Your left brain controls things like analytical thinking, numbers, language, reasoning, logic, science and math. The right brain controls emotional intelligence, imagination, expression, art awareness, intuition and creativity.

Most people feel they are mainly one or the other. Because I own an art store, I tend to see many people who are more right-brain oriented. This is also referred as “fantastical.”

Fantastical, or right-brain people, like to have everything in front of them. If something is filed in a traditional file drawer, it is “gone” to them because they cannot visually see it. Thus, they often have a messy desk! These people can become frustrated with themselves because they often can’t find things. They do not put things back where they came from because they have not even decided where they belong in the first place!

Everyone has both sides of their brain, but one side is more dominant than the other. You can work on developing the less-dominant side of your brain, if you choose. Just don’t get into the mindset of “I am not creative” or “I just am not organized.” This article is designed to help creative people get organized.

Organization, among other things, is a work skill. To be efficient and productive, you need some organizational skills. Here are some things you can do:

  1. Think about why you don’t put something in a file and in a drawer. You may be one of those people who need to see things visually and need a different kind of filing system. It does not have to be the traditional system of folders and drawers; it can be stacks. Some suggest using the back side of your desk for this purpose, but I feel computers make this technique impossible. Get a shelf behind you or beside you — someplace where you can see it and make your stacks. Keep the stacks only for active projects. Once a project is done, move it into a traditional file cabinet, a storage box or the trash. You can also use organization bins. Again, remove them when the project is done. You might even have shelves or bins for projects that never end and a shelf for a one-time project.
  2. When you store things on a shelf or in a closet, do not put things in front of one another unless they are shorter. If you hide them, they are as good as gone.
  3. Have a banker’s desk and keep it as clear as possible. Look at what is on your desk. Does it need to be there? If not, where else could/should it be? If where they belong is not working, ask yourself why. If I hate (and don’t) put something away, is it because it is not a convenient place? If you set up your “shelf file” and then don’t use it, is it because you have not made it reachable. If you must get up to put something away, it will probably stay on your desk.
  4. You can also apply the banker’s desk theory to your work bench. Have a place for everything and make yourself stick to it. I have a very talented artist friend who often works for me. She said, “My goal is to get as organized as you are. I am so sick of hunting for something I just put down.” Put up a peg board or get some bins. Give things a function and then use them.
  5. Make the organization part of your workday until it becomes automatic. Decide if you are going to start your day putting things where they belong or end your day that way. You might also want to spend time working on organization before or after lunch. You will start to enjoy your efforts when the scissors are right within reach, and your favorite pen you use to write checks is easy to find. You will start to appreciate the fact that when you get the urge to work on a project, everything is in one spot.
  6. We all accumulate scrap paper – but throw the tiny pieces away. Tiny pieces of paper get mixed in with larger pieces of paper and get lost. Scrap is scrap, so dispose of it properly. Only use big sheets.
  7. There are lots of techniques for note taking. Let’s say you are in a meeting and you will cover a variety of topics. The worst thing you can do is take the notes all on one piece of paper. One of my techniques is to write my to-do list from the meeting on the upper-right corner of my agenda. When I am done the meeting, I can tear that list off and staple it to my daily list I am working on. Or I can just use the agenda and start ticking them off. I don’t have to go searching through my notes to see what the action items are that I need to get done. If you are taking information notes, use a separate sheet for each topic and give it a heading. When you are done with the meeting, you can put that sheet with your file on that topic. Again, you are not wading through a sheet of notes to find what you are looking for, and that makes your life much easier.

Everyone has both sides of their brain. Use them both!

Little Tips and Workarounds

Can’t keep your foil under control?

A makeshift foil dispenser.

Here is an idea — you can use a copper foil dispenser!

Copper Foil Dispenser

It will also help if you bag your foil, because it is copper and will oxidize. You can keep your original bag and tape it up, or if you have a dispenser, just put the entire thing in a large bag.

The next tip is one that I don’t really believe in — using Chapstick to coat your lines so they won’t grind or saw off. I have heard that using it will gum up your grinder or saw. However, if it is your grinder or saw, you can do whatever you want.

Chapstick is sometimes used to coat lines so that they aren’t lost when grinding or sawing.

The recommended product is Mark Stay II.

Mark Stay II Line Preserver

Clothespins

Use clothespins to hold a small suncatcher while you are soldering or break them apart and use them as burnishers.

We do have many “real” burnishers available.

Kwik-Crimp Burnisher

Plastic Burnisher

 

Circles from Squares

Courtesy of Bullseye Glass

These beautiful cabochons were made from square pieces of glass.

You can create nicely rounded cabochons from stacks of 0.75(20 x 20 mm) squares, thanks to heat, gravity, and the 6 Millimeter Rule. But be careful…they’re addictive!

Some Design Layer Possibilities

  • Blue/Vanilla part sheet: Scatter Steel Blue Opalescent coarse frit (000146-0003) onto a base of 3-mm Clear sheet glass, then sift a heavy layer of French Vanilla powder (000137-0008) over the top to cover. Fire to a full fuse. Maximize depth by arranging the Clear side toward the top of the stack.

 

  • River Rock Reaction (See Quick Tip: River Rock Reaction)

 

  • Pieces of Citronelle Opalescent (000221-0030) and

 

  • Turquoise Blue Opalescent (000116-0030).

 

The Stack

Top (6 mm): A “lensing” layer of Clear. This layer will stretch considerably. 

Middle (3-4 mm): This “design” layer will stretch and be visible through the top layer. Use part sheets or pieces of 3-mm sheet glass.

Bottom (6 mm): Typically not visible from the front. This layer will stretch the least. 

Tips

  • 6-mm Tekta Clear is a natural for this project. It’s more efficient, with fewer pieces to cut, clean and assemble!

 

  • Measure and score a grid of 0.75″ squares, then run them using the Rule of Halves. Two layers of 3 mm will also work.

 

  • A dab of GlasTac Gel will keep the stack together before firing.

 

  • The stacks flow out to about 1.25″ (32 mm) in diameter, so give them room.

 

  • For the cleanest release, we recommend firing on ThinFire.

 

Cabochon Firing Schedule

 

Rate Temperature Hold

 

1 400°F (222°C) 1225°F (662°C) :30

2 600°F (333°C) 1525°F (829°C) :30

3 AFAP 900°F (482°C) 1:00

4 100°F (56°C) 700°F (371°C) :00

5 AFAP 70°F (21°C) :00

 

Note: This heatwork goes beyond what the glass is tested for. Some styles

may opalize and/or shift in compatibility. Test before making multiples.

That’s Pretty Shifty!

Shifty and CFL are two terms to describe the same thing — a pallet of glass that changes color based on the light that it is under. CFL stands for “compact fluorescent light.” The glass changes its apparent color in fluorescent lighting.

The first CFL/shifty glass was done by Glass Alchemy in 2014, with the color Serum. Next, came Terps.

Serum by Glass Alchemy

Terps by Glass Alchemy

 

These are a bit tough to get, but other CFLs are available:

Potion by Glass Alchemy

 

Gemini by Northstar

 

Hydra by Northstar

 

Siriusly by Northstar

Check our hot glass section for availability.

 

Y96 Firing Schedule Guidelines

Please adjust hold times for the size of your project.

Remember, this is only a guide.

 Full Fuse

  • From room temp to 1,000F at 300 degrees per hour, hold 10 minutes
  • From 1,000F to 1,250F at 300 degrees per hour, hold 20 minutes
  • From 1,250F to 1,425F at 300 degrees per hour, hold 15 minutes
  • Crash from 1,425F to 950F, hold 60 minutes
  • From 950F to 800F at 200 degrees per hour, hold 10 minutes
  • From 800F to 150F at 300 degrees per hour
  • Natural cooling to room temperature

Tack Fuse

  • From room temp to 1,000F at 300 degrees per hour, hold 10 minutes
  • From 1,000F to 1,250F at 300 degrees per hour, hold 20 minutes
  • From 1,250F to 1,350F at 300 degrees per hour, hold 10 minutes
  • From 1,350F to 950F AFAP, hold for 60 mins
  • From 950F to 800F at 200 degrees per hour, hold 10 minutes
  • From 800F to 150F at 300 degrees per hour
  • Natural cooling to room temperature

Slump Fuse

  • From room temp to 1,000F at 300 degrees per hour, hold 30 minutes
  • From 1,000F to 1,225F at 200 degrees per hour, hold 10 minutes
  • From 1,225F to 950F fairly quickly, hold for 60 mins
  • From 950F to 800F at 200 degrees per hour, hold 30 minutes
  • From 800F to 150F at 300 degrees per hour
  • Natural cooling to room temperature

REQUIRES EYE CONTACT.

REMEMBER, THIS IS ONLY A GUIDE.

Oxygen Concentrators

When we set up our flame room in our new location, we put a lot of thought into how we would get gas and oxygen to the burners. We ended up with piped-in gas and oxygen concentrators and think it is a great system.

We started with hot head torches and MAPP gas.

Hot Head Torch

MAPP Gas Canister Holder and Clamp

This was a great beginner setup and we had a great time with it.

We then took a big step and became Bethlehem dealers! Below are the Alpha and Bravo glassworking torch models.

Bethlehem Burner Alpha Glassworking Torch

Bethlehem Burner Bravo Glassworking Torch

With this system, we used 3-gallon propane tanks and some used medical oxygen generators. An issue we encountered with this system was having to make frequent runs to get more propane — and, of course, the propane would run out at the worst times. Another issue we encountered was that the used medical generators did not last. People tend to give up on these generators when they have a lot of hours on them.

When we moved, we looked at oxygen tanks. That solution sounded like a nightmare to me — the tanks must be allowed to bleed, so you are losing oxygen all the time. It is a time-consuming process to get the tanks refilled, and just having oxygen under pressure seemed to be a scary concept.

We went the concentrator route and have not regretted it. These rebuilt machines are like new and have enough power to run the Bravos — and that is a lot!

We sell oxygen generators but only for store pickup as they are difficult to ship.

A concentrator works by taking air from the room and compresses it. It then delivers air to where you direct it — in our case, to a bench burner. In a five-step process, the concentrator:

  1. takes air from the room
  2. compresses the oxygen
  3. takes out the nitrogen
  4. adjusts the way the air is delivered and
  5. delivers it.

The concentrator takes oxygen out of the room, so you must allow air to get back in by means of some sort of ventilation. We have our vented out through the ceiling and also have a door on each end as well as a vent toward the floor into the next room so there are plenty of ways to get air in.

I posed the question on the Facebook group Lampwork Tips, Techniques, & Questions. One person said the removal of the oxygen from the room is about as problematic as all the people in the room using up oxygen by breathing!

 

 

Wissmach Luminescent Glass

Luminescent glass is different than iridescent glass. It is low-fire—not high-fire like iridescent—and is intended for reverse fusing.

What is reverse fusing?

Reverse fusing means placing your piece facedown on the kiln shelf and building backwards, fire-coated side down.

If you are firing on a textured mold, place a piece of ThinFire between your boron-treated mold and the glass. If you fire your piece with the coated side up or cover it with another piece of glass, you will lose the coating.

If you are slumping and do not go over 1,200 degrees, you can place the luminescent side up and not lose the coating.

Luminescent glass is food-safe and has been tested by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. However, please note that once the piece has been fired in your kiln, it is no longer a Wissmach product; it is your product. If you have been firing glass that could leave lead or cadmium traces in your kiln, that could get on the product, which would render it unsafe for serving food or beverages.

 

 

 

 

LEFT: Luminescent glass fired with ThinFire in between, with the coating facedown.

RIGHT:  Luminescent glass fired facedown, directly on the mold.

 

Firing Schedules: Courtesy of Petra Kaiser and Wissmach Glass

Standard Fusing Schedule – 2 Layers Thick

Segment 1: 600°F/hr up to 1,000°F, hold for 10 minutes

Segment 2: Full/9,999 up to 1,410°F, hold for 10 minutes

Segment 3: Full/9,999 down to 950°F, hold for 60 minutes

Segment 4: 100°F down to 700°F, hold for 1 minute

Tack Fuse, Polishing and/or Slumping into a Mold

Segment 1: 300°F/hr up to 1,000°F, hold for 10 minutes

Segment 2: Full/9,999 up to 1,300°F or 1,350°F
(depending on your desired results), hold for 10 minutes

Segment 3: Full/9,999 down to 950°F, hold for 60 minutes

Segment 4: 100°F down to 700°F, hold for 1 minute

Draping over a Mold and/or Polishing

Segment 1: 300°F/hr up to 1,000°F, hold for 10 minutes

Segment 2: Full/9,999 up to 1,200°F or 1,220°F (depending on your desired results),
hold for 10 minutes

Segment 3: Full/9,999 down to 950°F, hold for 60 minutes

Segment 4: 100°F down to 700°F, hold for 1 minute

NOTE: Not all kilns are alike. Your kiln size, controller type and individual project may require some alteration to the schedule for best results.