View Full Interactive Version Of This Page : How do you use your boro rods? Kiln Temp
I have two questions. When you are making your borosilicate beads/hearts do you usually use the rod strait or do you encased a clear rod with the color and then use it? I learned from the "Boro Beads Magic" Video, but I'm wondering how some of you get the beautiful rich colors.
I've read about the boro annealing schedule and how to kiln strike, but I'm wondering what temperature you have your kiln set at when you are making the beads? Thanks for any suggestions you have,
I use my rods both straight (applying the rod to the mandrel) and watered down (applied to clear, as in the Boro Bead Magic video). It depends on the style of bead I am making. What's on the video is just a few kinds of boro beads, there's no limit to what you can invent to do!
When I am making beads, I have my kiln set at 960 degrees, and as soon as I put the last bead in I run the annealing program which starts at 1050 degrees. If I want to spike the colors, I do that just before running the annealing program.
I leave my kiln at 1050 90% of the time. The only time I don't is if I don't want a color to strike. If that's the case, I lower it to 1000. Also, when using reds, I kiln them a little lower.
As for how I use the rods, it depends on the color and the application.
I usually keep my kiln at 1065-1070, all day. I like colors to strike more.
1070, because pyrometers are NOT precision devices... they usually are off in one direction or another by ten, fifty, seventy, ten degrees, easily. If 1/3 of an inch instead of 1/4 is protruding into the chamber, it can make a big difference. 1070 ensures that it is actually reaching 1050. GA recommends this, too. Susan says pyrometers are only guaranteed within 200 degrees. Seems a little severe, but it's true that they are a bit spotty.
Putting colors over clear can make a big difference in how they look, of course. Some colors can be richer, others, less intense. It also effects the striations, so it's just a matter of experimenting with each color to see what you like. The silver colors and rubies look a lot different in canes than applied straight.
When you are doing pinks and reds, what temp do you garage them at before you are ready to run the striking cycle?
Well, I see you asked Cosmo specifically, but as long as I'm here, I will mention that I do not see any reason to kiln at a lower temp, and then strike.
My striking cycle is my annealing cycle: 1070.
However, I do have an Aim frontloader that is at LEAST 50 degrees cooler in the front compared to the back, and sometimes I leave stuff in the front and then move it to the back at the end of the day, before the 1 hour soak and 3 hour ramp down cycle. I get more than satisfactory results from NS Yellow, Triple Passion, Double Amber Purple, etc. doing it either way. But then, I'm not looking for repeateable, predictable results. However it somes out is fine with me.
But I think Cosmo already answered your question: he says 1000 degrees in his post there.
Thanks, I wasn't clear on if the 1000 degrees was the garaging temp or annealing/striking temp or both.
Theoretically, you can anneal boro at 1000, or any temp over the strain point (950), it just takes a really long time.
But realistically, you still need to strike and anneal at 1050 or higher! At 1000, your colors remain unstruck, or however they were when you put them in.
People just garage at a lower temperature to be able to control the striking, so beads aren't overstriking as they sit in the kiln until he is done working for the day. Then they strike/anneal or whatever.
Thank you everyone for the tips. It sounds like what I've been doing is similar to everyone what most of you are doing. I've just heard so much lately about annealing cycles and kiln striking that I wondered if I should be starting lower like Anita does. I was having a problem with some muddy colors and thought that was the problem, but now I'm thinking it must the ruby I keep adding to the mix. Julian that is very interesting about the pyrometers because mine might be low and that is why I'm not getting the rich colors like many of you get. I also like the tip about loading in the front of your kiln because mine is the same way. Thank you again Anita, Julian, Chad, and Eric your question was helpful too.
If you have a stick of normal ruby such as GA Ruby 4 or NS Ruby or Dark Ruby (not Elvis or Pomegranate) Try melting a rod until it is unstruck (clear), and then stick it in your kiln at 1050. If it turns red within 10 minutes, it's at least 1050!
I can never get this straight... I think if the pyrometer is sticking in too far, it reads lower than it actually is. If it is not in far enough, it reads higher than it actually is. Maybe its the other way around.
The farther in it is, the higer it will read because more of the probe is exposed to the heat.
Okay, so if it's 'really' 1060 in your kiln, and you have it too far in, when the kiln reads 1060, it will actually be 1045 (for instance).
If it's not in far enough, it might read 1065 when it's actually 1077, or something.
I have a friend here in town who insists, oh, he can take his kiln up to 1400 and he doesn't get any marks on the bottom of the pieces. Well, thats because he leaves his pyrometer sticking like 6 inches into the kiln...
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