Here we are at project number 2 for this month’s free kiln carving pattern. This is not actually a kiln carving project, rather an additional technique that you can do with your kiln carving stencil. You did make a stencil right??
Copper and brass sheet (22-24 gauge is good)
Clear glass sheets – I’m using two pieces of float cut from the same sheet
heavy duty scissors
sandpaper – 150 grit
Trace the head of the hummingbird on the copper sheet using your sharpie.
Trace the wings and body on the brass sheet.
Use those handy scissors to cut out all of the traced parts.
Flatten the brass and copper pieces with the metal spoon.
Once your hummingbird is flat, use the sandpaper to gently sand the entire surface of all of the metal pieces, front and back.
This step is primarily to remove all of the oxidation and impurities from the surface of the metal sheet. The better job you do here, the brighter your metal will stay during fusing. Some folks use chemicals such as Sparex to achieve the same thing.
Things to remember during sanding:
- check your cutting. If your bird has any burrs from cutting, they will stab right into your finger as you sand. (You’ll see my band-aid in later photos!)
- The metal is soft, rubbing back and forth will cause the bird parts to wrinkle up. It works best to hold down one edge and drag the sand paper in one direction away from your finger.
- This is your chance to get the metal really, really clean. If you don’t, you can get bubbles (example coming right up!)
Arrange one piece of glass on a prepared kiln shelf, add the hanging loops and metal bird parts. Stack the second piece of glass on top and fire the whole thing to a full fuse using the full fuse schedule for 1/4″ glass.
You’ll notice that I didn’t get my copper as clean as it should have been so I have bubbles on the head. It would be easy to grind them down a bit and re-fuse this project.