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Beads of Courage


 
  #1  
Old 2013-01-20, 7:31am
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Default Fuming using metal leaf or foil

Fuming Glass Using Metal Foil or Leaf Material

Ok, here are some simple fuming instructions. Please make sure your exhaust is working on high and plenty of make up air is coming in from behind you. The fumes follow the exhaust air away from your face. Wearing a ventilator is always a good idea.

This is what works for me. Take a clear rod, (I use boro because it isn't shocky and will hold together after being repeatedly put in and out of the heat), and gather the end to about pea sized. Let it cool some and roll it in foil or leaf. Burnish the leaf/foil onto it and roll it again so you get pretty heavy coverage of metal on glass. The better it is burnished, the less burn-off you will lose. When it’s pretty well wrapped, rest it off to the side. Some people like to use silver wire or gold or silver grains but I find that this works well too, because the leaf is such a pure material without alloy to muck it up, and I have it on hand. DO NOT use sterling wire. This is best done with as pure a metal source as can be found.

Create your bead, vessel, whatever. Keep the bead warm in the outer reaches of the flame while introducing the metal wrapped rod back in with your other hand. The fuming rod should be to within an inch or so of the face of the torch. The fumes rise upward and beyond the rod so position your bead slightly above the flame to “catch” them. Around 3” out.

Generally, I can see a shift in the color of the outer reaches of the flame and rotate my bead there. (With gold you should see green flame.) The fuming begins in that sweet spot. For the first couple beads, I would really let the fuming accumulate a lot, so that you can learn to what extent it can go. Be patient, it isn’t instantaneous, but rather like painting the bead with fumes . So, rotate and tip your bead regularly so good and even coverage is achieved. (With silver the fuming rod may appear to spark. These are bits of silver burning off. Catch them on the bead if you can.)

Using gold leaf: Pale transparent pink or lavender moretti becomes quite vibrant and when fumed long enough, and gets a golden sheen on the bead. Very lovely. (see attached)

Using silver leaf: Make your bead out of dark ivory. Fume it repeatedly until it becomes deep mustard colored. The addition of silver fumes makes the outer “skin” on the bead more brittle. Let the bead cool a second or two, then reintroduce and heat up, not quite to the point of movement. Repeat. The surface will appear to age and crackle, like old china. The bead will look like aged parchment. I did a sculptural bead and before the crackle, the silver collected in the crevices and appeared white so the sculpture was deep yellow with white-wash in the recesses. Nice.

Try wrapping a black bead with ivory and fume it with silver. It gets kind of ethereal. Experiment with other colors. You can use the same fuming rods over and over, occasionally adding some new metal leaf/foil to them, to refresh.

Good Luck!

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  #2  
Old 2013-01-20, 10:35am
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OOOOOO, neat!
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  #3  
Old 2013-01-20, 10:48am
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Thank you!
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  #4  
Old 2013-01-20, 1:29pm
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Thanks Melodie! I can't wait to try this. I tried fuming a few times before, but nothing happened and I gave up
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  #5  
Old 2013-01-20, 2:34pm
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You're welcome!
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  #6  
Old 2013-01-20, 4:46pm
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WOW This is cool! I tried this today! Not sure how the lavendar bead came out as I didn't see much gold color on it but the gold fuming rod came out a REALLY cool color so I just put the gold leaf directly on the lavendar and cooked the snot out of it! Cool effect! Prolly did the fuming part wrong on the first one even tho I held it in or just above the green flame. Guess I will see how it looks tomorrow when it comes out of the kiln!
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Old 2013-01-20, 6:56pm
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This is so many weeks/months ahead of my abilities at the moment.

Thanks for the information...
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Old 2013-01-20, 8:00pm
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Thank you! I have tried it 2x's now and wasn't sure if I was doing it right or not. I was doing it with boro for marbles and since I'm new to boro I wasn't sure if it was the glass LOL
I guess I should try with clear to get a better feel with your instruction.
thank you!!!
Sue
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  #9  
Old 2013-01-20, 8:01pm
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Thank you Emoon!!!
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  #10  
Old 2013-01-21, 10:39am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LynieG View Post
WOW This is cool! I tried this today! Not sure how the lavendar bead came out as I didn't see much gold color on it but the gold fuming rod came out a REALLY cool color so I just put the gold leaf directly on the lavendar and cooked the snot out of it! Cool effect! Prolly did the fuming part wrong on the first one even tho I held it in or just above the green flame. Guess I will see how it looks tomorrow when it comes out of the kiln!
It can take a while for enough fuming to accumulate on the surface, so be patient. You'll get a color change LONG before you get the gold tint over the surface.

Yes, I like the way the rod looks too! I don't expect you will see much difference when it comes out of the kiln as you saw when you put it in, not like striking and reducing. Keep trying!
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  #11  
Old 2013-01-21, 10:43am
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Sue, because you are altering the chemistry of the glass itself, boro will be similarly affected. You are aware that colors of glass are determined by the metals in their make up. Fuming is just adding more of the metal of your choice onto the surface of the bead. Be patient, it takes a while...an of course, practice.

Quote:
Originally Posted by glassymom View Post
Thank you! I have tried it 2x's now and wasn't sure if I was doing it right or not. I was doing it with boro for marbles and since I'm new to boro I wasn't sure if it was the glass LOL
I guess I should try with clear to get a better feel with your instruction.
thank you!!!
Sue
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  #12  
Old 2013-01-21, 10:47am
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I should mention that I have a hard time demoing this process, depending on the lighting. I have those daylight curly bulbs in my studio and it's easy to see the color of the flame. Try dimming your lights and see if the green flame is more apparent.
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  #13  
Old 2013-01-21, 1:40pm
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Thank you Melodie! I was getting the green flame and saw the color change but wasn't sure if this was the end of the process or not! I held it in the flame a little longer but because I was using 90 coe instead of boro (which I don't have LOL) my fume rod was melting on me so I had to quit! At least now I knnow I was heading in the right direction! Now to just order me a boro rod LOL!
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Old 2013-01-21, 3:22pm
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Really, the boro rod is a great help! Sounds like you are on the right track though! You can always pull the fuming rod out of the flame for a couple seconds and let it firm back up...
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Old 2013-01-21, 3:31pm
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LOL Yeah I know but I never think of the obvious until after the fact...
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Old 2013-01-21, 3:35pm
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Dang that learning curve!!
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