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

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  #1  
Old 2011-11-27, 4:45pm
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Default Etch cream removal

I made some pine cones, which are pretty cute. But I felt they should be etched. They look great but even with a toothbrush, I am having problems removing the etch cream residue in the crevices. Any ideas?

Before etch:


After:
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  #2  
Old 2011-11-27, 5:11pm
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Well baking soda and hot water will neutralize it maybe.
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Old 2011-11-27, 5:24pm
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I scrubbed really good w dish soap and a toothbrush, but, I will try that too.
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  #4  
Old 2011-11-27, 7:06pm
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okay, I toothbrushed them with the BS and water and now they are soaking. Any other insights would be appreciated. I have seen this on other textured surfaces but of course these are way more undercut.
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  #5  
Old 2011-11-27, 7:15pm
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I've always had success with BS/water and a toothbrush, but sometimes I have to do it, let it dry so I can see how it looks and then do it again.

Your beads are beautiful!
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Old 2011-11-27, 7:28pm
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Thanks! I will try it again then. Its making me a little crazy(er)!!
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  #7  
Old 2011-11-27, 7:56pm
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I made some beads recently with lots of frits and enamels. I put them in the etchall and left it for too long. For some reason, the etchall created a white powder-like surface and no amount of scrubbing or tumbling has been able to remove it.
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  #8  
Old 2011-11-27, 8:34pm
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Qtip? paper towel covered toothpic?
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Old 2011-11-28, 5:40am
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Tammy, How long do you leave the beads in for? I time at about 15 min. Is this too long in this instance?
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  #10  
Old 2011-11-28, 5:46am
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Ok.
1 what color did you use that your tan beads etched to blue?????? War to cool!
And
2 maybe you are not seeing etching cream residu as much as it has created an effect on the surface that looks like etching cream 15 min seems very conservative. That should not be the issue.
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  #11  
Old 2011-11-28, 10:01am
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I etch for 10 minutes and that seems to be sufficient.
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  #12  
Old 2011-11-28, 10:09am
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Renaissance wax is a good follow up to give it a bit of a sheen. Larry whatshisname uses that on all of his beads.
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Old 2011-11-28, 1:24pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jaci View Post
Ok.
1 what color did you use that your tan beads etched to blue?????? War to cool!
And
2 maybe you are not seeing etching cream residu as much as it has created an effect on the surface that looks like etching cream 15 min seems very conservative. That should not be the issue.
LOLOL!! I have waffled between the pink and the blue backgrounds but I think the blue is the final select.
That "effect" thing seems most likely. I have tried jeweler's wax to soften the etch some in the past, but I think there are just such severe undercuts here that the wax isn't able to do it all. I may just have to make shiny pinecones...ackkkkkkk.
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  #14  
Old 2011-11-28, 1:25pm
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I left mine in for about 45 minutes and they were very small beads with just a thin layer of frit and enamel. I etched some larger focal beads with the same pattern but for only 15 minutes and they came out fine.
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Old 2011-11-28, 1:26pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pat View Post
Renaissance wax is a good follow up to give it a bit of a sheen. Larry whatshisname uses that on all of his beads.
Sorry Pat, I posted before I saw your suggestion. I do use RW on my etched beads, but it doesn't seem to be working this time. I think because the undercuts are so deep. I even tried applying w a toothbrush.
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Old 2011-11-28, 1:29pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tammydownunder View Post
I left mine in for about 45 minutes and they were very small beads with just a thin layer of frit and enamel. I etched some larger focal beads with the same pattern but for only 15 minutes and they came out fine.
It makes sense that if you left beads in for a longer time that the etch would get deeper and white residue could remain, even if the acid ceases reacting. But at 15 minutes, I didn't think it should.

What is the LEAST amount of time to etch to a matte finish, do you think? Maybe if I could get an etch in 4-5 min, it would be less porous?
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Old 2011-11-28, 1:53pm
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Okay. Update: I scrubbed the pinecones, using baking soda and water and a toothbrush. Then I soaked them overnight in BS & water. Rinsed and let dry, and I must say, they look LOTS better! I haven't put them under a magnifying glass yet, waiting for them to be thoroughly dry, but really. much improved. Yay!
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  #18  
Old 2011-11-28, 2:19pm
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Lovely beads!

I used my "scan" app on your image thingy. It went straight to your Etsy shop! Cool! I need to learn how to do that!

Update: I did it!
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Old 2011-11-28, 3:47pm
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There are some free apps on the web.
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  #20  
Old 2011-11-28, 3:49pm
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just curious.. as you appear to have solved the issue with the etching residue... are you using etching cream or etching liquid?

I use etching liquid and find some colors and/or coes etch more quickly than others. Most opaques faster than most transparents. I generally warm the bead in hot water, dip for a short time in the liquid, rinse, dry and inspect. If it is sufficiently etched, I soak it in hot water with baking soda, rinse and scrub with a toothbrush, dry, and then inspect. For stubborn residue in a surface that is etched to "frost", I might use a sonic cleaner with soap.
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Old 2011-11-28, 5:54pm
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I've been using cream. Do you think the liquid works faster? How do you keep the bead warm while it gets sufficiently dry to dip, or doesn't the moisture on the surface affect the etch?

I didn't use the sonic cleaner, but I think that's a really good idea and faster than the overnight soak! My pine cones are still not perfectly "clean" but it is only detectable under magnification.
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  #22  
Old 2011-11-29, 5:10am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by emoon View Post
It makes sense that if you left beads in for a longer time that the etch would get deeper and white residue could remain, even if the acid ceases reacting. But at 15 minutes, I didn't think it should.

What is the LEAST amount of time to etch to a matte finish, do you think? Maybe if I could get an etch in 4-5 min, it would be less porous?
This depends on the color oddly. I was doing some testing on my blog a while back trying to figure out just this. How much time??? It really varries by color, and if the glass is transparent or opaque. Some colors just seemed to take forever! (I was doing testing with a brand new jar of etchall too)
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  #23  
Old 2011-11-29, 7:52am
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Toothbrush and toothpaste works well.
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Old 2011-11-29, 8:53pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by emoon View Post
I made some pine cones, which are pretty cute. But I felt they should be etched. They look great but even with a toothbrush, I am having problems removing the etch cream residue in the crevices. Any ideas?

Before etch:


After:
I usually just use warm running water and my fingers.
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Old 2011-12-04, 9:53am
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Melodie,
I am pretty sure the liquid Etch-all from B&B is faster than the paste version... certainly provides an easier and less streaky etch. I expect it would also be easier to remove the residue. Once I discovered the liquid, I stopped using the cream entirely. I have a few jars I've kept.... thinking they would be good for spot etching, but haven't done that yet.

As for how water might influence the etch... not sure. After warming beads in hot water, I quickly blot off water with paper towels and dip them in the liquid. I string my beads on stretch cord so I can suspend them across the container (I use Tupperware type container) to more easily agitate in liquid and to move a batch of similar beads through the process.

I haven't seen any instructions regarding heat making the process faster.. I was just reasoning that since most etching techniques with metal, as well as the pickling process, are speeded up with heat, this would be as well. Since I don't want to heat the etching liquid, I heat the beads before placing them in the liquid. I also etch enameled copper with the same etching liquid and I don't bother with the heating step. Works fine.
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Old 2011-12-04, 2:34pm
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Carol, this is very helpful, Thanks! Just one thing. Who is B&B? Bead & Button? Do you happen to have a link to share?

I have used Etchall, and Velvet Etch, both in cream version. They are about the same in efficacy. I'm going to try liquid. I suspect there is less waste too. I was tumbling but it seems silly to run the electricity, when I only have 2-3 beads to etch!
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Old 2011-12-04, 2:36pm
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Kathryn, Me too, unless there are crevices or recesses. As you can see in the etched pine cone, some residue shows somewhat. It was alot better after the baking soda soak, and Renaisance Wax.
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Old 2011-12-04, 3:55pm
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Baking soda causes the white powdery stuff and I no longer use it because of that. I wash mine with Dawn scrubbing them all together really well for about five minutes. Then I rinse under running warm water for 2-3 minutes.
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  #29  
Old 2011-12-04, 6:33pm
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I had this problem with one bead that I forgot for too long into Etchall... for several hours... might have been over night too. It seemed I was able to scrub off all the white stuff with toothbrush, and soaking in water and BS, but after day or so, I was able to see it again. Finally leaving them over night to soak in BS water solution and scrubbing my fingers bloody I thought I got them clean, but after while you notice the scum come back again. Luckily it is right next to white raised dots, so it is more difficult to see. But I think it is not necessarily the color itself that causes it, I think it is the texture... But why, I cant say. But then again... even when there is not so much texture either, I can see it in places where the color changes... so go figure. It is not consistant, so I am really puzzled.
Maybe it is the white that I have the problems with, cause I have it on the white dots, and also on the edge of the murrinis, which are probably on the white base... Hmmmm.
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Old 2011-12-04, 6:50pm
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I'm no etching expert but I took a class with someone that etches all their beads and they liked the cream better. The reason given was it etches more evenly than liquid as different colors seems to etch differently with the liquid. We only left the cream on for only 10 minutes, then scraped most of the etching cream off into the jar and then scrubbed the beads with a toothbrush.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Holaday View Post
Melodie,
I am pretty sure the liquid Etch-all from B&B is faster than the paste version... certainly provides an easier and less streaky etch. I expect it would also be easier to remove the residue. Once I discovered the liquid, I stopped using the cream entirely. I have a few jars I've kept.... thinking they would be good for spot etching, but haven't done that yet.

As for how water might influence the etch... not sure. After warming beads in hot water, I quickly blot off water with paper towels and dip them in the liquid. I string my beads on stretch cord so I can suspend them across the container (I use Tupperware type container) to more easily agitate in liquid and to move a batch of similar beads through the process.

I haven't seen any instructions regarding heat making the process faster.. I was just reasoning that since most etching techniques with metal, as well as the pickling process, are speeded up with heat, this would be as well. Since I don't want to heat the etching liquid, I heat the beads before placing them in the liquid. I also etch enameled copper with the same etching liquid and I don't bother with the heating step. Works fine.
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