View Full Interactive Version Of This Page : bead ends 1/16" vs 3/32" mandrel
When I used 3/32" mandrels my puckered ends happened almost naturally. Since I have started using 1/16" mandrels, it seems that I really have to pay close attention to keep the pucker. I start with tiny footprints and use the disk method for my basic beads. It seems once I loose the pucker, it is really hard to get it back. . . any suggestions?
I've found that I have to work cooler - remember the 1/16th mandrel has roughly half the material as a 3/32nd, and therefore will take and hold heat longer, and gets hotter faster.
It definately takes a different technique to work smaller.
Here's what I do to "get the pucker back"...
Turn your flame down low. and heat only one end of the bead until it glows pretty brightly, but not so much that it starts to droop. Slowly start tilting the mandrel away from parallel, with the hot side of the bead down, while still turning. I keep tilting until I get to about 45 degrees. That will allow the warm glass to flow away from the center of the bead and make a pucker. Keep the mandrel at an angle and keep rotating until the bead cools down enough to be pretty solid again, or you'll loose the pucker again. Then, repeat for the other side.
It should be noted, however, that this will make your bead wider and less thick than when you started. Usually it's not enough to make much of a difference, but it does happen.
I learned this trick from "Smircich Makes Beads" by Jim Smircich, by the way....
Thanks Mike and Chad. I will give Mr. Smirchich's method a try today!
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