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

View Poll Results: Wet or Dry?
Yes, I soak my bead & mandrel before removing the bead. 227 81.65%
No, I just do it dry. 35 12.59%
Yes, I clean my beads in water. 197 70.86%
No, I just clean them dry. 5 1.80%
Yes, I give my mandrels a bit of a scrub before redipping. 137 49.28%
Scrub? I just stick them straight back in the bead release. 56 20.14%
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 278. You may not vote on this poll

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  #1  
Old 2012-09-26, 7:41pm
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Default Do you soak your mandrels to remove your beads & do you clean your beads in water?

Take 2!

A discussion over in the Newbies thread in the Gallery prompted these questions.

When you remove your beads from the mandrel, do you soak your bead/mandrel in water first?

When you clean your beads, do you do that in water too?

Lastly, after you have removed your beads & the bead release, do you scrub your mandrels before you redip them?

And after all those questions, can you tell us what bead release you use?
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  #2  
Old 2012-09-26, 7:52pm
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LOL My option isn't exactly mentioned. I don't soak unless a bead is being difficult, and I rinse in water and wipe off the mandrels with a paper towel afterwards.

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  #3  
Old 2012-09-26, 7:56pm
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Robyn - I use Foster Fire. My routine is to pull the fully cooled mandrels out of the crock pot or kiln and pop them into a tall glass full of water - generally a takeout cup from Starbucks or wherever. I let them soak anywhere from 10 minutes to 2 days, depending on what's going on and how badly I need the bead.

Later, I pull them out of the water, grasp the bead with a towel and the mandrel with a pair of pliers, twist and pull. 90% of the time the bead slides right off; for really stubborn ones I might need to scrape the release away (with whatever's handy - anywhere from a fingernail to a knife) and let it soak some more. I drop the beads into a plastic bowl of water, and put the mandrel back in the cup to soak. Once all the beads are off, I pull the mandrels out one at a time, take a quick swipe with a paper towel, and the release almost always comes right off.

* It occurs to me to wonder if the difference in getting the release off has to do with the drying method. I never flame dry, mine usually sit for anywhere from several hours to several days after dipping.

The beads get the release cleaned out holding the bead in the water while using a reamer or dremel, then for transparents a wire-bristled pipe cleaner. Then I dump them into a container of clean water to get the gunk off the outside. When all are done I simply fish them out and let them dry on a towel. The water in the containers goes to the houseplants out on my porch.
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  #4  
Old 2012-09-26, 8:27pm
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I soak in water with dish soap over night, most of the beads are in the bottom of the dish by morning.

Then I wash and dry the mandrels, buff them with a block buffer, wipe and then dip in release and put back in the rack.


Then I clean the beads with a BeaDreamer. Then beads are inspected, bagged and catalogued with inventory numbers and prices, then they are listed in my computer inventory program. Viola' all done.
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  #5  
Old 2012-09-26, 8:57pm
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Check out your work place cause where I work, housekeeping is always stripping and buffing the floors. They use large circular buffing pads that have this center piece which they don't use, they just throw'em away. Freebies yay! When I need a scrubbie and depending on if the floor is getting stripped buffed or polished the centers are available in different "grit". They are great for cleaning mandrels as well as scrubbing around the house.
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  #6  
Old 2012-09-26, 10:18pm
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Usually take the beads off the mandrel dry. And the mandrels get set dry in a mason jar.
The bead then go into a container of warm water. After about 20 minutes they then can be easily cleaned with the dremel.

The dirty mandrels: When ready to dip a batch, set them on paper towel and roll them. This gets off almost all the dry release. Then rinse them under water and dry well with another paper towell.

We use Sludge Plus. (we get it at CR LOO)
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  #7  
Old 2012-09-26, 11:25pm
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Dang it sounds like ya'll go to a lot of work!

I take the bead off the mandrel by holding one end in a pair of pliers and twisting the bead off. The mandrels then go into a mason jar till I am ready to dip. When ready to dip I just swipe a rag over the mandrel and dip and stick in a flower pot of sand! No rinsing in water, no scrub a dub dub, just swipe, dip and stick!

The beads go into a bowl of warm water till I am ready to clean them with a dremel, put in bowl of clean water, run a pipe cleaner thru them and dry them with a towel.
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  #8  
Old 2012-09-26, 11:58pm
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LOL love the poll

Soak mandrels in water, in my special orange ceramic pitcher until I get around to getting the beads off. This is rarely more than half an hour. Nearly two years and I'm still like a big kid
Line kitchen sink with newspaper and paper towels to trap the clay.
Twist the beads off, if necessary, holding mandrel with pliers.
Slide the bead up and down to get the worst of the release off, first.
Pop bead into a bowl that has water in it.
Rinse mandrel in my pitcher, and set aside until all beads are off.
Wizz all the beads with my dremelly thingy to remove bead release. While I'm at it, if I need to for gravity -shaped beads (like my hearts), de-burr and trim relevant end with same bit.
Rinse beads and return soaking bowl water to the pitcher. Rinse bowl and again tip the water in the pitcher.
Leave beads to dry on a towel.
Give mandrels a quick scuff with an old scotchbrite and wipe dry.
Gather paper containing the clay particles and bin it. Wipe sink out with clean towel to be sure no clay will go down the drain.

I love it when I have to empty an inch or two of clay from the bottom of my jug every few weeks or so.
Oh, and I use Foster Fire smooth & tuff
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  #9  
Old 2012-09-27, 12:58am
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I only soak my 1/16 -3/16 mandrels, any bigger than that my release...releases lol. It depends on a few things, could be a half hour, could be overnight

No scrubbing but i do dry them, i chose the last option but i don't go from wet > dipping of course.

...i use fusion, when I used other releases I had to soak and scrub

I clean them in a container of water with a dremel, then I dump the water into a spot in the flower garden after.
..omg if you're not cleaning under water with a dremel ? the glass & release dust plus ruining your bits
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  #10  
Old 2012-09-27, 1:23am
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I soak the mandrels because I was told it isn't good to breathe in the dry bead release because some types contain ingredients that can damage lungs. I don't know how accurate that is but as I'm prone to hayfever and asthma I avoid any risk. I alwys clean beads underwater or keep them wet while cleaning for the same reason.
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  #11  
Old 2012-09-27, 2:54am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ekkie View Post
I soak the mandrels because I was told it isn't good to breathe in the dry bead release because some types contain ingredients that can damage lungs. I don't know how accurate that is but as I'm prone to hayfever and asthma I avoid any risk. I alwys clean beads underwater or keep them wet while cleaning for the same reason.
Ditto.
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  #12  
Old 2012-09-27, 4:46am
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Robyn...
I soak mine for about a day or so, then DH removes them for me using pliers and rubber grip. Then continue to soak the beads in water while getting the Dremel prepped. While he is reaming the beads, I am usually drying and them dipping the mandrels in Foster Fire Smooth and Tuff. Don't usually scrub the mandrels but if needed, I use the ScotchBrite scrubby pads..they do the trick nicely.

I have always cleaned mine in water...aside from the breathing issue, it seems to clean them easier when they are wet.
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  #13  
Old 2012-09-27, 5:08am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LynieG View Post
Dang it sounds like ya'll go to a lot of work!

I take the bead off the mandrel by holding one end in a pair of pliers and twisting the bead off. The mandrels then go into a mason jar till I am ready to dip. When ready to dip I just swipe a rag over the mandrel and dip and stick in a flower pot of sand! No rinsing in water, no scrub a dub dub, just swipe, dip and stick!

The beads go into a bowl of warm water till I am ready to clean them with a dremel, put in bowl of clean water, run a pipe cleaner thru them and dry them with a towel.
my exact method
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  #14  
Old 2012-09-27, 6:15am
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Soak in soap water, clean with a dremel in soap water, rinse in fresh water.

I use the beads to scrub the mandrels as I remove them, then stick the mandrels in a tall can to dry before re-dipping.
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  #15  
Old 2012-09-27, 6:41am
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Foster Fire bead release makes removing the beads so easy, but I do put them in water first, then place the mandrel in a bench vice, grasp the bead with a paper towel or a hand with a glove on it. The bead slides right off. Very rarely do I have a stubborn bead.
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Old 2012-09-27, 6:44am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LynieG View Post
Dang it sounds like ya'll go to a lot of work!

I take the bead off the mandrel by holding one end in a pair of pliers and twisting the bead off. The mandrels then go into a mason jar till I am ready to dip. When ready to dip I just swipe a rag over the mandrel and dip and stick in a flower pot of sand! No rinsing in water, no scrub a dub dub, just swipe, dip and stick!

The beads go into a bowl of warm water till I am ready to clean them with a dremel, put in bowl of clean water, run a pipe cleaner thru them and dry them with a towel.
Same here, except I use a block of florist foam to stick my mandrels in to dry. My beads go into a plastic bag until I'm ready to clean them, then I put them in a bowl of water and start cleaning them with a dremel and diamond bit.
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  #17  
Old 2012-09-27, 9:39am
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I start off by kind of crimping the dry bead release on either side of the bead with my pliers to break it so that if comes off in chunks. Then I hold the mandrel with the pliers & twist the beads & pull them off. They almost always come off super easily. Since all of the bead release is already off the mandrels, I just swipe them with a towel before re-dipping.

When I get around to cleaning the beads, I do soak them in water & ream them out in the water because that bead release, if done dry, is really fine particulate stuff that floats in the air.
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Old 2012-09-27, 10:43am
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I have a little plastic tub I soak the beads/mandrels in.
I pull the beads off and the release flakes off into the water and settles to the bottom.
I wait for all the release to settle to the bottom and I pour off almost all the water into the sink.
I pour the remaining water and release into the garbage.
I pour clean water into the tub and clean my beads with a dremel/beadreamer in that water unless they are sculptural, then I clean them under running water.
All the beads get a final rinse and then set on a paper towel to dry.
I rinse the mandrels off and put them in a jar until they're dry.
Then I dip and place them in a large flower pot filled with sand.


I can only do this method when using Fusion bead release. Some of the other releases stay mixed in with the water for too long rather than settling to the bottom like Fusion.
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Last edited by loribeads; 2012-09-27 at 11:13am.
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Old 2012-09-27, 11:01am
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I soak my beads in a bowl of water for about 5-10 minutes. I have a Jim Moore bead releaser that pushes them right off the mandrels. I use a green scrubby and give the mandrel a couple swipes then dip them in release when dry. I clean the beads in water with a beadreamer and my fordom flex shaft.
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Old 2012-09-27, 3:26pm
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Why would you need soap? I've never used it, just wondering.
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Old 2012-09-27, 8:42pm
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I remove the bead dry, clean wet and go over the mandrels with a green scrubbie before redipping. I use Universal release.
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Old 2012-09-27, 11:58pm
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Thanks everyone, it seems I'm not crazy afterall, yay!
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Old 2012-09-28, 2:29am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BeadedChic View Post
Robyn...
I soak mine for about a day or so, then DH removes them for me using pliers and rubber grip. Then continue to soak the beads in water while getting the Dremel prepped. While he is reaming the beads, I am usually drying and them dipping the mandrels in Foster Fire Smooth and Tuff. Don't usually scrub the mandrels but if needed, I use the ScotchBrite scrubby pads..they do the trick nicely.

I have always cleaned mine in water...aside from the breathing issue, it seems to clean them easier when they are wet.
where can I buy one of these?
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Old 2012-09-28, 6:34am
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where can I buy one of these?
Yep! My model must be defective, he only checks them out once they're all cleaned & dry. I wonder where you can get the update to their software.
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Old 2012-09-28, 6:53am
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I use Fusion bead release from Frantz.

The way I remove the beads depends on how loose they are on the mandrel when I take them out of the kiln and whether I know I'll need the mandrels right away - in which case I just twist them off dry. If the beads are stubborn or I'm just feeling lazy, I'll stick them in water for later. When I remove the beads - whether wet or dry - the bead release generally comes off on its own, so I don't have to scrub them.

I always clean my beads in water with the bead submerged just under the surface of the water. I used to use a Dremel with a diamond bit, but got frustrated with the spray of water everywhere, so now I just use a diamond bit stuck into a wine bottle cork (for good grip) and clean by hand.
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  #26  
Old 2012-09-28, 7:38am
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I take the beads off the mandrel dry. Unless the bead is stuck which is very unusual. And the ''dirty'' mandrels get in a mason jar.
The beads are put into a container of warm water and cleaned with a dremel.
Then, I put the beads in a container of warm clean water to rinse all the bead release left on the surface of the beads.

I never clean my mandrels unless there's some leftover bead release on it. I find that mandrels last longer that way... Weird, I know...

I am using FosterFire Smooth N' Tuff (and I love it....)
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  #27  
Old 2012-09-29, 6:52am
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I am currently using Dip N Go Sludge but I followed the same process when I was using Fusion bead release.

I soak for an hour or so, and then scrub the mandrels with a scrubber sponge to clean them before redipping and I make sure they are dry first.

I use water to clean beads as well. Is there another way?

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  #28  
Old 2012-09-29, 8:24am
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Beads soak in warm water for about 10 min., pull bead off with my crimping pliers to hold the mandrel, (no paper towel involved) bead goes back in the water, clean with my Beadreamer and I have a designated dish towel to dry them on. The mandrels just get rubbed together under running water, no scrubbing involved. This all happens first thing in the morning so I can photograph and list the beads the same day.
I use Fusion too.
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Old 2012-09-29, 1:43pm
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My beads sit in a mug, on their mandrels, until there's enough accumulation that they are cluttering the kitchen and they start turning up in conversation. Then, I generally twist them off into a bowl or mug filled with water, letting a paper towel catch the wet crumbs of bead release. The mandrel goes back into the mug it started in until all of the beads are off.

Then, I wipe any remaining bead release off the mandrels, picking them up four or five at a time, and making sure they are still straight enough for another go around. All of the straight mandrels get piled on a folded paper towel and set aside to dry, then they go out the studio to be redipped.

The bowl/mug of beads sits with me on the couch to watch general hospital and I clean them manually with a diamond bit in the bowl/mug of water. After they're clean, they sit in a paper towel until its time for them to join their friends in my bead storage.
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Old 2012-09-29, 2:37pm
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blong2001 blong2001 is offline
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I twist them off dry but when I am ready to clean them put them in water. Once in a while I take a brillo pad to my mandrels to clean them up.
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