Well hello there! Today I’m answering more reader questions. If you have a question, send it on over. I’ve removed identifying information for privacy reasons.
Q: Hi, I’m extremely new to fusing/slumping glass, having been a lampworker for a number of years.
Since I have to import all my glass supplies anyway, having no access to brick/mortar stores here in Panama, I was wondering if you could offer recommendations on suppliers for your ancillary needs; forms, release, powders, etc. I’ve found multiple sources on-line, but am not sure who best fills the need for the recycled glass market. Any assistance will be welcomed. If you prefer not to post publicly, just send a private message. Read more
Sometimes, the tool you need the most doesn’t exist. It’s at that moment that you realize…Hey, I could make one of those! I’m doing an awful lot of edge cold working and don’t have a lap wheel, and my hand held polisher isn’t fabulous for edges. So, with a little ingenuity and a sharp hack saw, a new bench polisher is born.
I started with this tile saw, since I can’t use it as a saw. (don’t buy one, it’s horrible piece of equipment)
Wouldn’t it be great if you could use any cool thing you find for slumping? Well, maybe not everything, but there are lots of things that CAN be used for slumping, as long as they are prepared correctly. Let’s look at a few examples and consider what we would have to do to successfully use them for slumping. Read more
One of the facts of life about working in glass is cold working. It’s not a lot of fun for very long. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy watching glass become all smooth and clear and gorgeous through all of the stages. I just don’t love it 90 times in one day. Read more
Fusing brass loops into recycled glass artwork is relatively easy and is a great way to add loops for wind-chimes and sun-catchers. The loops are probably a bit too chunky for jewelry, unless you’d doing industrial style jewelry, then you’re good to go.
When you are looking to expand your tool kit of cool things that can be used to make recycled glass art, don’t overlook the craft store! Not all cool glass tools come from glass companies, there are a ton of scrap-booking and craft store items that can be (mis) used to good effect in the glass studio. Here are a few:
I’ve always loved beads. In fact, I’m mildly obsessed with beads after taking a bead making class last year. So, I tried a little experiment. Could I quickly and easily make a mold to make fused triangle shaped beads? Read more
There are lots of ways to cut bottles, I’ve tried all of them that I can find and think of, my favorite is still the tile saw. There are pro’s and con’s to using a tile saw, it’s a tool that is great for somethings, not so much for others.
Things to consider:
It’s FAST! I can cut upwards of 50 bottles an hour with a saw.
Works great for bottles with surface texture or raised patterns.
Fairly accurate with practice.
Leaves a raggedy edge that is really best either cut off, or ground smooth before fusing. I usually cut them off.
Is pretty darn messy.
Needs safety gear. I STRONGLY recommend a respirator, safety glasses or face shield and a combination of ear-plugs and gun muffs.
I have an 8″ tile saw, so I roll the bottle into the saw blade as I cut. If you have a larger saw, you can pull the blade through the bottle, I still recommend a slight roll, it will keep your cut smooth and keep the last little bit from breaking.
Once you get the neck and the bottom cut from the bottle, you’ll have a cylinder of glass that is the start point for lots of other projects.
Here is a short video showing how to cut the bottom from a Crown Royal bottle.