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Tips, Techniques, and Questions -- Technical questions or tips

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  #91  
Old 2006-08-08, 8:52am
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BTW - this happened last night!!! After I've had the benefit of reading this thread for several days.

Some people are slower to learn than others.
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  #92  
Old 2006-08-08, 9:30am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jenfire
Do not allow cats in the studio at any time. Singed hair, beads make perfect "I'm Bored" playthings, and they will drink the water you are cleaning the bead release with!

Jen
Soooooo true! Mine drink the water I use to cool my tools...just full of cracked glass! Not good for kitty tummies! So now I make sure that jar is covered before I leave my bench!

I have "innoculated" myself countless times with needle-sharp ends on stringer. The last time I had a rod in one hand...a mandrel in the other...and a stringer impaled just below my fingernail on my right hand! What to do!? THAT was the LAST time! I'm making a conscious effort to round ALL rods & stringer in the flame before setting it down! (I know it's been said before...but it bears repeating!)

Also...don't try a big honking encased bead before you know what the hell you're doing. The result is so ugly it will scare a gorilla! Cracks...devit...oh! the humanity!!!!

Also...keep a small hunk of blue ice within reach while at the torch. Put burned part on it instantly! The burn will be there...even a 3rd degree burn with a blister...but the pain will be sooooo much less. And by that, I mean the overall pain of the burn as it heals. I was amazed! I had my ice there for placing under my marvers to cool them for Raku. Now I keep a small one around just in case I have a careless moment.

When reaching over a rod warmer to turn it off...do not touch it with your wrist! I sizzled mine in a hard to bandage area! It got infected really bad and bled a lot until hubby doctored me up! Whew!

Edited to add: ALWAYS wear an apron of heavy material while at the torch! It will save many precious pieces of your anatomy! Leather is great...but I use heavy canvas with great success! If using boro...leather is the wiser choice!
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Last edited by raindance; 2006-08-08 at 9:38am.
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  #93  
Old 2006-08-08, 12:40pm
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OMG: Despite very sore fingers I decided to make a few beads at lunch (I can't stand being away from the torch for too long) and I couldn't figure out why they were coming out all wrong, i.e. rods taking too long to melt, beads turning funny colors, etc. I also noticed that the flame stayed really weak no matter how much I turned up the torch (I'm trying out a Fireworks torch right now). At first I thought the canister was running out of fuel, but NOOOOO!

I had the air holes covered!!!

That's it, I'm done for the day.
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  #94  
Old 2006-08-08, 12:41pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Anastasia
Hehehehe.....

My very first mistake, I really had no clue back then:
Don´t try to melt glass in soup ladle...that thing melts first.
Lol......

Anastasia

Oh my goodness! The most creative people find the most creative trouble!!!
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  #95  
Old 2006-08-08, 12:49pm
divak17 divak17 is offline
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When you pick glass off a bead with your tweezers and drop it into your glass of water, or when a bead cracks and you put it into your water, do not then throw the glass of water down the drain and expect the disposal to easily digest the glass globules and shattered bits...

Don't wave the hot glass rod at a fly. It's all fun and games until someone loses an eye... well, almost.
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  #96  
Old 2006-08-08, 4:50pm
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Emily Emily is offline
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If the bead release breaks and you've got a spinner, tilt the mandrel AWAY from your hand.

Plugging the kiln in is good, but it will heat up much faster if you flip the "on" switch, too. Remember to do this before you spend an hour making a 1.5 inch encased dichro lentil -- unless you really want a kilnload of partially-encased dichro frit.

Never scratch anything with a stringer, particularly during a demo. Blood running down your face makes a bad impression on members of the public.

Before trying to teach yourself to make marbles, put a raised edge around your work table. Those little bleepers ROLL.
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  #97  
Old 2006-08-09, 8:16am
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Thanks to all who helped with my "disastrous dots" experiment (one of the stupid newbie mistakes that started this thread). I've finally conquered dots!!! No more, well almost no more stringers. I still need to work on spacing and size control, but YIPEE, I did it!!!





Thank you!
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  #98  
Old 2006-08-09, 11:37am
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I don't think anyone has mentioned this lesson...

The black covering on a hand held marver, will catch fire, and when it does it will STINK.
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  #99  
Old 2006-08-09, 7:23pm
evilglass evilglass is offline
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No matter how giant the spider, he will not flee from a hot glass rod being waved at him. He may jump *at* the hot glass rod, thus winning himself a dubious victory when he lands on the hot end and you throw it at the workbench.

Luckily I avoided the torch flame while dueling with the spider. He didn't last long on the hot end of the rod, lifespan wise, but his carcass adorned it for a while, until I got the husband to scrape it off.
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  #100  
Old 2006-08-10, 9:08am
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LOL Evilglass! You should have left it there and put it up on eBay!
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  #101  
Old 2006-08-10, 10:37am
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ewwwwww....It'll happen again, though, maybe I'll consider it then
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  #102  
Old 2006-08-10, 3:56pm
Lorrie Lorrie is offline
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Things I've learned:

Never use masking tape when melting rods.
When flattening a huge glob of 10mm clear to encase, be sure to warm mashers.
Don't try and use a short piece, there's more.
It's better to stand and pull stringer.
Don't use a wooden ruler.
Put v-neck on backwards.
Cover bowl of water containing glass bits. I know there was more water. Where is the cat?

At least I can laugh at these, now. Have fun. Lorrie
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  #103  
Old 2006-08-11, 1:23pm
mtarara mtarara is offline
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If you are a klutz like me and drop your mandrel while making a bead, don't try to catch the bead end! Let it go, beads can be remade, but the dime size blister on my hand stopped my beadmaking for the day, and made a pretty painful night (even after icepacks, lots of ibuprofen and alcohol!!!)
Mary T.
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  #104  
Old 2006-08-11, 2:44pm
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i just dropped a hot rod of glass, didnt realize that it flipped end over end before it landed, and grabbed it by the HOT end.

lesson learned: dont do this.


did you ever notice that when you do things like that your brain says "oh man thats hot, this is going to hurt, i'd better drop it"... before you actually do drop the damn thing???
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  #105  
Old 2006-08-11, 4:50pm
twistedchicken twistedchicken is offline
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my funny wasn't so much me as the spouse unit -- i was torching in the workshop with the door open and remembering not to scratch the head or swat flies with hot objects while the spouse was going in and out with his tool belt on (doing honey-do projects?). I didn't keep track of in/out movement and was sure it was a bug flying around my head when in fact he was trying to stick his tongue in my ear -- luckily he had safety glasses on and i didn't skewer him with the stringer i was currently using. don't think he will do that again!
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  #106  
Old 2006-08-11, 4:58pm
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i have to cross the driveway to get to the shop (torch) -- probably has saved me from working in just a t-shirt!
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  #107  
Old 2006-08-14, 8:06am
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Karen Hardy Karen Hardy is offline
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Oh I forgot - gotta add this.

Sometimes the bead is just fugly and not worth saving. If you add more glass. It will be bigger and fuglier. If you press it in a mold - it will be nicely shaped, and fugly. Realizing that it's time to give up, because no matter what you do - it will always be a fugly bead....that's when you can take off those beginner shoes and step into the pro-beadmaker pumps.

Accept your fuglies...and move on to your next bead.....
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  #108  
Old 2006-08-18, 8:10am
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When pulling a stringer and so proud with yourself that it's uniform, do not assume that just because it's color has returned to the rod form that you can run your fingers along it to marvel at what a wonderful job you've done. Wait that one extra minute to let it cool down. I have a groove permanently indented between my thumb and forefinger that just happens to be the exact size of my stringers....I wonder how that got there.

hmm, not to clever, huh.
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  #109  
Old 2006-08-18, 5:52pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Karen Hardy
Oh I forgot - gotta add this.

Sometimes the bead is just fugly and not worth saving. If you add more glass. It will be bigger and fuglier. If you press it in a mold - it will be nicely shaped, and fugly. Realizing that it's time to give up, because no matter what you do - it will always be a fugly bead....that's when you can take off those beginner shoes and step into the pro-beadmaker pumps.

Accept your fuglies...and move on to your next bead.....
Amen to that, Karen!
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  #110  
Old 2006-08-18, 6:36pm
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If you're having trouble with getting your igniter to strike, pay attention to where your hand is in relation to the torch head or when it finally lights the torch, your hand will be smack in the middle of the flame!!!
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  #111  
Old 2006-08-19, 5:48pm
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I never thought I'd ever admit this...I am a rock collector and have a lot of pieces of pyrite (fools gold) around. I thought I'd try encase a small piece in glass to see what would happen-that's when I found out the pyrite contains SULFUR! Do you know how bad burning sulfer smells?

Karen
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  #112  
Old 2006-08-20, 8:44am
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Anastasia Anastasia is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mtarara
If you are a klutz like me and drop your mandrel while making a bead, don't try to catch the bead end! Let it go, beads can be remade, but the dime size blister on my hand stopped my beadmaking for the day, and made a pretty painful night (even after icepacks, lots of ibuprofen and alcohol!!!)
Mary T.
I hear you....loud and clear....lol...
Darn fast reaction...I even made a fist.....ouchieeee

Anastasia
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  #113  
Old 2006-08-20, 9:53am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Starfield
I never thought I'd ever admit this...I am a rock collector and have a lot of pieces of pyrite (fools gold) around. I thought I'd try encase a small piece in glass to see what would happen-that's when I found out the pyrite contains SULFUR! Do you know how bad burning sulfer smells?

Karen
Oh, now that's funny!

I once did try the "aluminum foil" instead of silver foil newbie trick - even though I knew it wouldn't work, I wanted to see what it would do... nasty.
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  #114  
Old 2006-08-20, 1:09pm
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I am still a very green newbie but I have mastered volcano beads. They happen when you put a bead into vermiculite when it is too hot. You get this really amazing volcano shaped bead pitted with vermiculite. And, it always happens to the beads that looked great going in!!!

BTW. the kiln has been on order for a couple of months. I can't wait!
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  #115  
Old 2006-08-26, 11:40am
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1) If you run out of hands while working with stringer, don't stick the cool end of the stringer in your mouth and try to hold it like a toothpick. It WILL break and the hot end will end up in your lap.
2) When trying to reseal the mica bag without losing any powder, it's not a good idea to attempt to blow the little bit of mica on the wrong side of the seal back into the baggie. You will end up with a sparkly face AND sparkly eyeballs.
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  #116  
Old 2006-08-26, 12:33pm
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Default OK...here is mine...

Never look down at a warming mandrel (glass rod warming in the other) and think...hmmm that mandrel looks bent....and then put down the glass and try to bend back the mandrel straight! The result will be burnt on bead release on your thumb and 2 neighboring fingers! I did this and had a groove burned in my 3 fingers for 3 days! OUCHIE!!!

Dum de dum dum......DUMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM!!!!
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  #117  
Old 2006-08-26, 2:43pm
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When you're at a gem show and they have small emeralds and CZ's for sale for a decent price, and you think emeralds are a great idea that you're the first person to think of...
Fight that urge. The color burned off and they blew the sides off of my bead. There's a reason there's colored CZ's.

When bits and pieces of the glass end shocks and goes flying, don't try to pick it up immediately. The common saying here is, "Hey! Hot glass is hot!"

The bottom side of your torch is just as hot as any other place... Especially when you try to reach for something under it and move your hand up.

The water bowl is not just there for bits of glass, it's theraputic for immediate burn relief.

Round the edges of mandrels, otherwise you -may- slice a finger open when removing beads from them.
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  #118  
Old 2006-08-26, 4:44pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shesmi
i just dropped a hot rod of glass, didnt realize that it flipped end over end before it landed, and grabbed it by the HOT end.

lesson learned: dont do this.


did you ever notice that when you do things like that your brain says "oh man thats hot, this is going to hurt, i'd better drop it"... before you actually do drop the damn thing???
My lampworkng teacher suggested only ever melting one end - that way you'd always know which end of the rod was likely to be hot.

Wish I always remembered to follow that advice myself.

Unfortunately it's usually stringeres that I've just pulled that I try to pick up before I've let them cool down enough.

Hot glass chips that bounce under cabinets will burn any dust bunnies that are residing underneath them....
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  #119  
Old 2006-08-26, 5:36pm
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Make sure that your children UNDERSTAND what consitutes an emergency when you are torching. Having your doll hid by your sister is not a good reason to run into the studio screaming at the top of your lungs! A burned daddy with a broken piece on the studio floor is not a lot of fun to be around........
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  #120  
Old 2006-08-26, 5:54pm
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And having Barbie's head pulled off by big brother doesn't cut it either !!!!
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