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Boro Room -- For Boro-related tips, techniques, and questions.

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  #1  
Old 2011-12-16, 8:23am
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Default I've come to the darkside - I've fallen in love with boro

So I finally tried boro last night. I made a 7/8" marble. Oh my, I've fallen in love! I didn't have one rod pop or crack on me! And I didn't have any trouble with the sooty stuff that sometimes appears on my COE 90 projects. I'm in love!!!

I do have a question for all of you boro pros. I annealed my 7/8" marble at 1050 degrees for 1 hour, then ramped down to 750 at 300 degrees per hour, then let it cooled on its own in the kiln to 100 degrees. Does that sound like an okay annealing schedule?

Also, I have a great fusing book that has annealing schedules in it for soft glass. Do any of you know of any good books like that for boro?
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  #2  
Old 2011-12-16, 8:58am
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Bandhu Dunham 'Contemporary Lampworking' all 3 volumes.
I think that may have been a little (a lot) too fast of a rampdown but I'll defer to people who actually make marbles for a real answer.
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Old 2011-12-16, 9:13am
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I dwell for one hour at 1050 then ramp down to 920 in 1.5 hours and then crash it. I agree with Rebecca that your ramp down may be too fast. I like Kervin's book for straight technical info. If the marbles are transparent you can check for residual stress after annealing using a pair of polarizing filters. Every now and then I do this with my marbles just to check that all is OK.

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Old 2011-12-16, 9:28am
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Thanks guys!

I went back through some old posts and came across some that suggest 85 degrees/hour to 960, hold for 30 minutes, then crash it (Larry, if my math is right, I think this is close to what you're doing). Another post suggests 60 degrees/hour to 960, hold for 20-30 minutes, then crash it.

Thank you so much for letting me know that I was ramping down too fast!

Rebecca - those books do look good!

Larry - Is the Kervin book "More than you ever wanted to know about glass beadmaking" by James Kervin?
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  #5  
Old 2011-12-16, 9:28am
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Welcome to a new chapter in your life.


Chapter 11.
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  #6  
Old 2011-12-16, 9:47am
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Hahahah Karen! Yep, I've already been at Chapter 11 for awhile now with the fusing, but yeah, I can see how boro isn't going to help. I'm already drooling at the mouth wanting to order more glass.
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  #7  
Old 2011-12-16, 10:00am
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Yippee glad to see another boro glass melter. You will fall in love with this glass over and over again. Wait to you come across a project that needs lots of clear and you will say "will you marry me" I know silly.
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  #8  
Old 2011-12-16, 11:26am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lacey View Post
Larry - Is the Kervin book "More than you ever wanted to know about glass beadmaking" by James Kervin?
Yup. Cheap softcover book with lots of great tech and safety info written in an understandable manner. As far as the annealing is concerned, realize that all of these schedules are an approximation based on general theoretical charts. Nothing is exact here including the temps most of us use as reference points. Annealing happens over a range of temps for any given glass formulation. Mine is based on the charts but more importantly 9 months of messing around with the boro I am using to see what works. I started from just holding at 1050 for an hour and then crashing the kiln as worst case which did produce a whole lot of residual stress then experimented from there. In a kiln that is better insulated than mine you might be able to get away with this.

I love the common boro colors but the clarity of the clear is what keeps me working boro.
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Old 2011-12-16, 12:21pm
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Welcome to the darkside!!!!! I work all types of glass, but boro is my love. It gives pretty colors with little effort... it rarely thermal cracks... the clear is, well, clear....it's just a happier glass.
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  #10  
Old 2011-12-16, 6:21pm
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"just a happier glass" I like that. Kinda like people you want to hang out with the happy ones.
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Old 2011-12-16, 6:50pm
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Welcome to the funside
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Old 2011-12-16, 7:00pm
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welcome to my nightmare!! LOL
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Old 2011-12-16, 8:01pm
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You're all trying to pull me in, aren't you?
I keep looking at shorts, but so far I've not bought any....
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Old 2011-12-17, 8:02am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eileen View Post
You're all trying to pull me in, aren't you?
I keep looking at shorts, but so far I've not bought any....
I can gift you some!!! Boro is ooooooh so fun and very addictive.

I also started as a fuser with COE 90 ... if you are getting soot ... try upping your oxygen. Most Bullseye likes a more oxygenated flame ... or so I have been told. And I do run towards the oxy side by habit and have never (to date) had any sooting problems. FWIW
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Old 2011-12-17, 8:14am
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Thank you Laura!
I'm not even sure I can melt it but it sure would be fun to try. I have a minor with a 5 oxycon, which I've heard can supposedly do small things but don't know for sure. If you have some spare bits to share that would be awesome so I can at least see if I can get it to melt!
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Old 2011-12-17, 8:43am
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You can get it to melt ... it will just be ... s - l - o - w.

I have alot of shorts because I pull stringers for implosions ... my terrible obsession. I'll gladly send some your way along with some clear.

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Old 2011-12-17, 10:14am
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I started boro on a minor and loved everything I made with it! I started implosions and marbles
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Old 2011-12-17, 11:47am
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Laura, thank you so much, and yes, I'm in RAOGK
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Old 2011-12-19, 8:24am
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Thank you guys for the warm welcome! Yes, "it's just a happier glass" is the perfect way to describe it. I made some more boro stuff over the weekend, and my love has only grown stronger.
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  #20  
Old 2011-12-19, 8:26am
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Larry, thanks for the book reference and the annealing info!
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  #21  
Old 2011-12-19, 12:16pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eileen View Post
Thank you Laura!
I'm not even sure I can melt it but it sure would be fun to try. I have a minor with a 5 oxycon, which I've heard can supposedly do small things but don't know for sure. If you have some spare bits to share that would be awesome so I can at least see if I can get it to melt!
You can! It wouldn't even be that slow. I work on a GTT bobcat with a 5lmp oxycon and have worked on taked with my torch and also on a tanked minor. These torches are very similar in performance, I think the GTT has more precision control(I'm biased since it's *my* torch) but the minor surely gets the job done. When comparing a concentrator to tanked oxy it's slightly less effective (maybe 10%) when you use the recommended pressures. Some people swear by running these small torches above the recommended pressures and I'm sure an oxycon can't compete with that but I didn't try it to compare. For bigger stuff you will need more torch/oxy but if you currently make beads or small sculpture in soft glass you will be fine I think.

I make pendants instead of beads proper but the time it takes isn't a problem. I make several pendants that take me about 30-45 mins and all are in the size range of a 1 inch marble - these include flower implosions, striking color honeycombs, tube dot implosions and vortex/spiral pendants. In the sub 30 min range I can make Smiley hearts, space designs, various twists, rod dot implosions and dotted cap mushrooms. Simple push mushrooms take about 10 mins.

Sorry to have written a novel but I wanted to illustrate the range of options I have seen in my limited experience while using a similar set up. Someone with an arsenal of soft glass experience could probably expand on this many times over without having to jump to a bigger tool set.
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Old 2011-12-19, 2:14pm
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When comparing a concentrator to tanked oxy it's slightly less effective (maybe 10%) when you use the recommended pressures. Some people swear by running these small torches above the recommended pressures and I'm sure an oxycon can't compete with that but I didn't try it to compare.
Slightly is an understatement for sure. Pressure and volume are not the only tradeoff with a concentrator. Purity is significantly lower as well.
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Old 2011-12-19, 4:59pm
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Slightly is an understatement for sure. Pressure and volume are not the only tradeoff with a concentrator. Purity is significantly lower as well.
Yeah, it's far from perfect but so is paying $40 per K tank. I mean, I couldn't lamp if that was my only option. I bought an oxycon off craigslist for $50 that runs my torch, doing nothing but boro, almost as effectively (I didn't measure purity just the end result in my ability to melt boro) as on a tank that would cost me $40 per week. I have another that I bought as a refurb for signifigantly more but it has a 5 year warranty and both have paid for themselves in a very short time. I've found the pulse to be more of a hinderance than the loss of juice to be honest.
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Old 2011-12-19, 6:05pm
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With the right setup, oxycons are nearly as effective as bottled in most situations. We're not talking to run a GTT Kobuki, but you can certainly effectively run the Lynx centerfire at damn near close to full with two linked 8 LPM machines @ 15 PSI - just remember you need to run each concentrator at about 75-80% of capacity or your purity suffers, which can cause sneaky color reduction issues.

I don't know about you guys, but 75% of my work on my cuda is done with the center-fire only. That represents significant savings in oxy. Now if only I had those 2 concentrators!
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  #25  
Old 2011-12-29, 9:30am
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Thanks everyone, I think I'll keep an eye out for a 2nd concentrator, or save my pennies for a larger one. I also need to see if my library has any books that talk about what to do with boro!
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