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

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  #1  
Old 2010-05-16, 2:17pm
2sheds 2sheds is offline
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Default Total Beginner With Very Specific Questions

Greetings!

I am a complete newbie with zero experience.

Last week I bought a MAPP gas torch. Yesterday, I found out I needed a Hot Head torch to work with glass. That's as far as I've gotten.

However--since I'm impatient--and since I know exactly what I want to start working on and exactly what I'm trying to achieve for now, I'm hoping that with the answers to some very specific questions, I'll have all the information I'll need to get started.

What I want to start doing is cutting open discarded beer, liquor, or wine bottles, putting (non flammable) stuff inside them, sealing up the cut, and then sealing off the neck of the bottle by heating it until it melts, or until it's soft enough to squeeze shut.

The questions I think I need answered are:

  1. What safety gear do I need to buy?

  2. Since I live in NYC and don't think I'll be using oxy-acetylene any time soon, I assumed Mapp gas was my best bet. Is there another system I'm missing that's safe, easy, and not too expensive?

  3. Can I use the Mapp gas torch itself to cut the bottles? If so, do I need a special narrow-gauge tip to make the cut? If not, should I buy or make a bottle-cutting device, or set strings on fire, or use electrified wires to cut the bottles? (There's a lot of writing about bottle cutting to be found on-line but there doesn't seem to be a consensus on the best method.)

  4. Do different bottles melt at different temperatures? Is there a way to tell which bottles won't, for example, melt with Mapp gas and a Hot Head torch? Does color matter?

  5. Finally, to reseal the cut, is it just a matter of heating both sides and pressing back together, or do I need to buy sticks of glass that melt at a lower temperatures and use it to weld the two pieces back together?

  6. Oh, and finally, finally, could anyone offer some recommendations on where I can buy my supplies at a good price? Is it likely that a second-hand Hot Head torch might be broken, or are there so few moving parts that they're pretty much indestructible?


That's all I can think of for now. Thanks in advance to anyone who volunteers to share their knowledge with me. It will be greatly appreciated. Also, I promise to keep you all updated on my progress if you're at all interested.

Thanks again,
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  #2  
Old 2010-05-16, 2:34pm
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Jenfire Jenfire is offline
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1.) Please start reading the safety forum here. You will decipher what you need from that.
2.) Please start reading the technical forum here, lots of good information in there.
3.) Depends on the COE of the glass used to make the bottle. A search should turn up some info.
4.) See above.
5.) Only you are going to know that after much experimentation.
6.) Look in the sales rack and compare prices. Lots of good vendors there and also some threads steering you clear of bad ones.

Welcome to glass and a lifelong learning curve.
Jen
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  #3  
Old 2010-05-16, 2:49pm
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Flamin' Francesca Flamin' Francesca is offline
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Get yourself a book or two and also check out videos in places like You Tube. There are some excellent ones for beginning flameworking, and they will cover all of the questions you have and more. Here are a couple of "classics" to get you started: "Making Glass Beads," by Cindy Jenkins and "Passing the Flame," by Corinna Tettinger. You might also look in the Garage for used copies of these and other books.
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  #4  
Old 2010-05-16, 3:09pm
2sheds 2sheds is offline
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Default I've only got one lifetime

Jenfire, while I don't doubt that mastering the art of glassworking involves a lifelong learning curve, I have trouble believing the same applies to cutting open and rejoining a bottle. I'm sure you're quite correct that the answers to all my questions could be teased out of the forums with a few hours of effort, it was in the hopes of avoiding that effort that I wrote the question. It seems a little strange that you would take the trouble to write back at all when the gist of your reply was, "do your own research." You probably could have answered my questions typing just as many characters, but oddly, seemed to prefer expending the effort telling me to get my own answers.

Same kind of goes for Flaming Francesca. If you somehow resent the idea that I'm trying to take a shortcut to getting the information which took you hours, days, of weeks or research to acquire for yourself, you could have simply ignored my question instead of citing the books and videos you read to acquire the knowledge yourself. (Especially when I clearly have no immediate interest in bead-making.) Seems to me your missing one of the beautiful things about information. You can give it away without being left any poorer for the giving.

This is the information, not the age of medieval guild secrets.

Last edited by 2sheds; 2010-05-16 at 3:11pm.
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  #5  
Old 2010-05-16, 3:20pm
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tracidawn78 tracidawn78 is offline
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Ignoring the fact that you just bashed 2 people for attempting to help you...

I don't think you're going to have much luck sealing the end of a broken beer or wine bottle with a Hothead. There is a good chance the bottle will break and crack as you're welding it shut. Even if it doesn't break and shatter while working, you will have to anneal it afterwards. If you don't anneal it, it will almost definitely break. Not many kilns will hold multiple bottles to anneal, so you're looking at working maybe 1 or 2 a day, if you even have a kiln at all. It will take a while to get a clean seal on a HH, and you will need didy glasses for this ($45), a kiln to anneal (upwards of $500), Hothead ($40), propane, hoses, tools, ventilation. This isn't some quick and easy job like you may think.

You might not want to be rude to people offering you free information.
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  #6  
Old 2010-05-16, 3:24pm
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Well, I've been working with stained glass for more years than I wish to admit...it shows my age LOL.

I have been flameworking for ten years as of next month. I say yes, it is a life long learning curve. Everytime you think you know it all, something happens and you realize you aren't as brilliant as you thought. Even the masters seem to learn new things all the time.

As for your new adventure, cutting bottles isn't that difficult. A bottle cutter will work great. Now as for putting them back together...hmmm...that is where you will need to do some experimenting and note taking.

Good luck on your new venture!

Sara
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  #7  
Old 2010-05-16, 3:32pm
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i have been doing lampwork for about 6 years and I don't think I would be able to do what you are trying,so as for finding a easy fast way good luck.
I hope it works out for you,
G.
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  #8  
Old 2010-05-16, 3:55pm
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If you think you can can do quickly what you want to do, you are truely a newbie. I would suggest you try melting some glass just to get the feel of it before you write us off as being rude. Really. Get a bottle and break it. Then using a pair of pliers practice melting it in the flame of your torch.

To do what you want you will have to seal up the bottle using only the bottle glass. Why? Because the COE of bottle glass is really unknown and you can not mix it with another glass. Even two bottles from the same case may not have been made from the same glass.
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  #9  
Old 2010-05-16, 4:06pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2sheds View Post
However--since I'm impatient--and since I know exactly what I want to start working on and exactly what I'm trying to achieve for now, I'm hoping that with the answers to some very specific questions, I'll have all the information I'll need to get started.
Ok, here are some very specific answers ...

Quote:
What I want to start doing is cutting open discarded beer, liquor, or wine bottles, putting (non flammable) stuff inside them, sealing up the cut, and then sealing off the neck of the bottle by heating it until it melts, or until it's soft enough to squeeze shut.

The questions I think I need answered are:
[*]What safety gear do I need to buy?
A pair of safety glasses. Ones that filter out they yellow sodium flare would be helpful.

A fire extinguisher

A first aid kit

Quote:
[*]Since I live in NYC and don't think I'll be using oxy-acetylene any time soon, I assumed Mapp gas was my best bet. Is there another system I'm missing that's safe, easy, and not too expensive?
Since this venture is going to fail anyway, no. Just use MAPP gas.

Quote:
[*]Can I use the Mapp gas torch itself to cut the bottles? If so, do I need a special narrow-gauge tip to make the cut? If not, should I buy or make a bottle-cutting device, or set strings on fire, or use electrified wires to cut the bottles? (There's a lot of writing about bottle cutting to be found on-line but there doesn't seem to be a consensus on the best method.)
To make the type of cut you want, use either a glass cutter, string on fire, or the electric hot wire. No torch will give you the cut you want.

Quote:
[*]Do different bottles melt at different temperatures? Is there a way to tell which bottles won't, for example, melt with Mapp gas and a Hot Head torch? Does color matter?
Yes, different bottles melt at different temperatures. Color does matter. The best way to know is to try it yourself.

Quote:
[*]Finally, to reseal the cut, is it just a matter of heating both sides and pressing back together, or do I need to buy sticks of glass that melt at a lower temperatures and use it to weld the two pieces back together?
Just heat and push. No 'filler rod' is needed.

Quote:
[*]Oh, and finally, finally, could anyone offer some recommendations on where I can buy my supplies at a good price? Is it likely that a second-hand Hot Head torch might be broken, or are there so few moving parts that they're pretty much indestructible?
Other than the Hot Head itself, you have not given us a "very specific" list of the supplies you want. Hence, it's pretty hard to recommend a supplier.

Hot Heads *can* wear out with use.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------

So, you wanted answers to specific question. There you go. That said, please realize, this project is destined to fail.

I'd tell you why, but you didn't ask ...

Malcolm
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  #10  
Old 2010-05-16, 4:13pm
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echeveria echeveria is offline
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You know I think the two first responses were very polite considering you were obviously trying to shortcut a learning process in a way that is just frankly not possible. The answers to your questions fill pages and pages of books, lots of space in this and other forums, and could not be answered in a quick line or two back. So, your opinion that someone could do it by "typing just as many characters" is as erroneous as it is rude.

If you are not completely lazy and stupid, you might find enough information for your project, already FREELY GIVEN here in this forum. Nobody here misses the beauty of that.
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  #11  
Old 2010-05-16, 4:30pm
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I'm visualizing a horrible scenario in which a bottle, re-sealed and filled with something-or-other, develops internal pressure buildup from expanding hot air during the top-seal step, and blows out along the side seals, which would not be as strong as the original un-cut bottle.

Whatever you end up doing, fergodsakes be careful! *sharon*
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  #12  
Old 2010-05-16, 5:05pm
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2Sheds,
Since this is primarily a forum for lampworking for the purpose of bead and jewelry making, yes, I assumed that your eventual goal was something along those lines, perhaps using recycled bottle glass. Your questions struck me as so ill informed about glass generally that I thought You Tube would be a place for you to see someone actually melting glass with a Hot Head to get a feel for it before trying the nearly impossible task you described. You're right, I should have just let you go for the Darwin award rather than trying to give you some sources that would help you understand why it's such a difficult thing to do. I didn't want to be rude, but clearly, that should not have been one of my concerns.
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  #13  
Old 2010-05-16, 6:02pm
2sheds 2sheds is offline
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Default No offense meant. None taken.

Just a quick review: I stated my total ignorance on the subject from the outset. I thought I was asking a simple question and being denied the information I was seeking for the reasons I stated. I did not intend to be rude to those denying me this information--in fact (though I'm certain none of you will believe this) I thought I was being gently morally instructive. When I said the "beautiful thing about the internet" I was not being snotty. I really meant beautiful. I've always thought that the internet was the greatest human achievement in my lifetime--perhaps of all time. My reference to medieval guilds was again, a perfectly serious warning about the perils of hoarding knowledge, or denying knowledge until one 'paid one's dues.'

A misunderstanding on my part was clearly involved in that I did not realize I was not asking simple questions, as I've since learned on this thread. My thanks for this information. I will explore other options.

Thank you all. If I make any progress with my project I will inform you. It's been said that 'fools rush in where angels fear to tread', but then again, an awful lot of interesting discoveries were made through accidents.

Finally, just thought that I'd let you know, that what I was intending to fill the bottles with was .... broken glass. The parks of NYC, especially Brooklyn, are literally covered in broken glass. I was looking for a way to make trash into art by sorting the shards by color, filling clear glass bottles with them, and then sealing them shut. With further experimentation I was hoping to make lamps through a variation of this technique.

Sorry for having provoked such hostility. Take care.
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  #14  
Old 2010-05-16, 6:09pm
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no one is denying you any information - the knowledge is there for your reading pleasure. Your sense of entitlement is astounding - and you're apparently too lazy to look for the info.
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Last edited by squid; 2010-05-16 at 6:11pm.
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  #15  
Old 2010-05-16, 6:09pm
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I think you could accomplish what you want using cold glass techniques.
Rather that trying to hot seal the top of the bottle maybe cut a round piece of glass for the top and use silicone or some other adhesive to seal it shut.

A Hothead is not nearly hot enough to seal a bottle. I know this because I've been using one to make beads for about 7 years.
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  #16  
Old 2010-05-16, 6:45pm
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Kalera Kalera is offline
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You can soften/melt most bottle glass with a Hot Head.

What you want to do is possible using a Hot Head; the obstacle is that you also need a kiln, which is not cheap. The reason you need a kiln is that if you don't bring the whole bottle up to temperature before introducing it to the flame, it will shock and crack from the heat differential.

So what you need to do is cut the top of your bottle using whatever method you settle on, and then fill the bottle with your glass scrap, place the bottle in a kiln and bring it up to about 1000 degrees. Then you will heat a glass rod in the flame and "punty" it onto the bottom of the bottle. You will use this punty as a handle by which to hold the bottle in the flame. Bring it to the flame and soften the neck, then use a large tweezer or a marver to push the edges of the neck together. Finally, place the bottle back in the kiln, and tap the punty to knock it off.

Different bottle colors, and even same color bottles from different runs, will vary in COE and should not be used together. Almost all will melt in a Hot Head, though some may take a while and time is critical when you're using a glass punty, as, if it cools too much, it will tend to break loose.

This IS doable, but not cheaply, and not as easily as you may have been thinking.

And yes, you CAN ask other people to tell you exactly what you want to know so you can avoid looking it up on your own, but it IS rude to do so without at least saying "I did some searches but still have a few questions", know what I mean?
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  #17  
Old 2010-05-16, 6:46pm
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I suggest Elizabeth Mears' "Flameworking".
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  #18  
Old 2010-05-16, 7:03pm
RyanTheNumberImp RyanTheNumberImp is offline
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I hope you didn't get scared off, I think your questions are completely valid.

What you would like to do is completely possible, but extraordinarily difficult to pull off with standard lamp working techniques. I feel confident that I could do it, but I've been a lampworker for 5 years and a glassblower for about two.

All bottles are soft glass, which essentially means that they cannot survive rapid temperature changes (the thermal expansion will crack the glass). You will need to cut the bottle cold, heat up both ends of the bottle and a metal bowl of broken glass in the kiln, pop open the kiln, grab the bottom of the bottle, pour the hot glass into it (not melted, just hot enough to not explode when heated) then grab the top and seal it together.

To make reasonably attractive seals you also need to be able to blow, so you will need a blowpipe etc... What I have typed into this post already sounds complicated, and I have skipped a lot of detail.

Without a kiln, oxy/propane torch, plenty of supporting tools and a lot of experience this isn't feasible. Cutting and rejoining a bottle in a visually pleasing way is harder than blowing a new bottle from scratch. I'm talking orders of magnitude harder. On top of that, if you get anything too hot they will join and likely crack because the coe won't be the same.


I would recommend you just cut the bottles and glue them back together. You could also cut very close to the bottom, pile in broken glass and try to tack fuse in a kiln. You would have to be insanely careful with the timing but you should be able to get it just slightly distorted so it seals back together and looks kinda like a modern wavy artsy bottle. For that to work though, all the glass would have to be compatible which isn't going to happen with glass picked up off the ground.
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  #19  
Old 2010-05-16, 7:26pm
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I would reccommend something like Laserglass's off hand studio. He has a CD on making your own.

I also think the tack fusing idea is a good one. You need a kiln anyway so...

Also you might try this http://www.asgs-glass.org/asgs/GTR/TREASURE/Page_1.html

You can probably find a cheap oxygen concentrator in NYC somewhere, try craigslist. Actually, try craigslist for the kiln and an old welding torch.
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Old 2010-05-16, 7:28pm
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Hum...how DO I find my way into these threads? Just a thought bubble before I proceed...

Taking this from the top, I'll say that being first generation American with an English grandmother; seeing your Avatar name, I can certainly appreciate British humor! Further, guessing you're a native New Yorker and having a much-loved Mother-in-Law who is a true Brooklyn-born Italian, I can also understand East Coast mentality! With that said, I hope YOU'LL appreciate that as a new member here, you won't find a better, more helpful group of people. Understand that we are like a close knit family...we support and encourage one another, and when necessary, we scold one another when it seems appropriate. Likewise, our ability to band together is like a scene straight out of the movie "300", so if you cross one of us, you cross us ALL!

Quote:
Originally Posted by 2sheds View Post
Just a quick review: I stated my total ignorance on the subject from the outset. I thought I was asking a simple question and being denied the information I was seeking for the reasons I stated.
To recognize one's own ignorance is a humble acknowledgment! Ironically, though, what you perceived as a "simple question" - especially to seasoned lampworkers/glasswokers - was a red flag that you were (in your self-acknowledged impatience) willing to forge head on into what not only seems eminent disaster but clearly could endanger both life and limb if you aren't willing to take the necessary steps to learn safety (always amongst the first rules of glasswork) and glean a general sense of how hot glass behaves. As far as being "denied" information, the "entitlement" you may have felt by a simple sign up (as opposed to slowly and appreciatively letting us get to know and guide you) will ultimately make not only the door slam shut in your face - and FAST - but more than will insure that extra effort is put forth to make sure it HITS YOU IN THE ASS!

Quote:
Originally Posted by 2sheds View Post
I did not intend to be rude to those denying me this information--in fact (though I'm certain none of you will believe this) I thought I was being gently morally instructive. When I said the "beautiful thing about the internet" I was not being snotty. I really meant beautiful. I've always thought that the internet was the greatest human achievement in my lifetime--perhaps of all time. My reference to medieval guilds was again, a perfectly serious warning about the perils of hoarding knowledge, or denying knowledge until one 'paid one's dues.'
I agree with you here - the internet is an amazing, information-filled, beautiful thing! I personally credit Gene Rodenberry - whom I regard as a true visionary - for not only the foundational concept of the "net" but many of the wonders of modern technology! ("Communicators" = Cell Phones, for another example).

Although, technically, no "dues" are required to be a participating member here, as with most communal environs of society...politeness, contribution and familiarity breed trust.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 2sheds View Post
A misunderstanding on my part was clearly involved in that I did not realize I was not asking simple questions, as I've since learned on this thread. My thanks for this information. I will explore other options.
Your perspective here is PERFECT! Please know that some of the more intense responses you received were ignited out of pure concern for your safety! There are many things that can go wrong or endanger you while working with glass - either immediately (hot blowing-up glass burns like HELL!) or long-term (ventilation will prevent respiratory difficulties that can be irreversible and/or life threatening). A review of the Safety Section of this forum will give you lots of tips and probably save you some health issues and heartache!

Quote:
Originally Posted by 2sheds View Post
Thank you all. If I make any progress with my project I will inform you. It's been said that 'fools rush in where angels fear to tread', but then again, an awful lot of interesting discoveries were made through accidents.
I like this thinking, and that you've given yourself cause for pause! I have a similar phrase - actually taken from an old episode of "Zorro" years ago on the Disney Channel: "Only a fool rushes to his own death". As much as I appreciate your enthusiasm (I myself tread far beyond where most Hot Headers go!) I encourage you to take at least time to play with the fundamentals before you go full throttle!

Quote:
Originally Posted by 2sheds View Post
Finally, just thought that I'd let you know, that what I was intending to fill the bottles with was .... broken glass. The parks of NYC, especially Brooklyn, are literally covered in broken glass. I was looking for a way to make trash into art by sorting the shards by color, filling clear glass bottles with them, and then sealing them shut. With further experimentation I was hoping to make lamps through a variation of this technique.
This is an awesome, innovative idea! Don't give up...but do please consider that you may have better, safer success by combining both torch and cold glass work as have been suggested above. As much as I appreciate your enthusiasm, ultimately you want your idea to succeed and be a long-lasting success. It may take more than one way to skin this cat!

Quote:
Originally Posted by 2sheds View Post
Sorry for having provoked such hostility. Take care.
Apology accepted. I am hopeful that you'll read this response, take time to digest it in the true helpful spirit it's being proffered to you, and come back to start a new.

You just may find that it feels less like "defending yourself against an attack by fresh fruit" and more like aligning yourself with a group that can truly help you create your dream!

All my best,
De
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Last edited by theglasszone; 2010-05-16 at 7:31pm.
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  #21  
Old 2010-05-16, 9:26pm
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Kenny (yes, I did receive your email)

Perhaps it is a cultural or generational difference, but the tone of your first post, when you asked the questions, came off a bit ... shall we say ... strong?

Quote:
However--since I'm impatient--and since I know exactly what I want to start working on and exactly what I'm trying to achieve for now, I'm hoping that with the answers to some very specific questions, I'll have all the information I'll need to get started.
(emphasis added)

Since you openly acknowledged that you don't know the material or the process, you couldn't possibly know all the questions to ask! And when people politely suggested that you study up on the subject, you lashed out.

So ... I did *exactly* what you asked ... I answered your specific questions. And yet, somehow, even that didn't seem to warrant a thank-you.

Whatever ...

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If I may suggest ... all of this unpleasantness could have been avoided if ... you merely asked, "I want to do #####. How would you suggest I do this?"

Had you asked that, I might have answered you by saying:


If you're going to be working with hot glass, you're going to need a kiln. This sounds like it is probably out of your price range. So, how about this ...

1) Find a manual bottle capping machine. These aren't every expensive (especially compared to a kiln!). You can find on anywhere that sells beer or wine making supplies.

2) After washing and drying the bottles, cap them.

3) Use a bottle cutter to cut off the base of each bottle.

4) Fill each bottle with the material in question.

5) Glue the bottom of the bottle back onto the bottle. Superglue should work in this application.

6) If necessary, hide the glue line with a piece of ribbon, or something.

You may even want to go so far as to print up some labels for your bottles.

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If you seriously wish to follow your original idea, please be prepared to invest a great deal of time, effort, and money in learning the process and the materials, and expect a great many failures on the way. What you are asking to do is extremely difficult, even for an experienced artist.

Yes, the information is out there. And many of us are willing to share. Just don't expect that the answers to 6 questions will give you all the knowledge needed to accomplish this.

Malcolm
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  #22  
Old 2010-05-16, 9:36pm
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Thank you so much for this link! It was very innovative and entertaining reading!

De
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  #23  
Old 2010-05-16, 9:59pm
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ROFLMAO!!! This is one of the funniest threads I think I have EVER read on here-
You guys were so sweet with your initial responses (Jen & Francesca), and then, after the "entitled" response, De-your description of the group here (like the movie, 300)-the mental image of everyone's av's was too much!! The real killer is that she just assumed that everyone should just "know" how to do what she's wanting to do-wow..I'm amazed & astounded. But still giggling..
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  #24  
Old 2010-05-16, 10:14pm
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Malcolm, I must say, you're a true gentleman!

Hugs,
De
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  #25  
Old 2010-05-16, 10:22pm
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Malcolm, I must say, you're a true gentleman!

Hugs,
De
Ditto, Malcolm!
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  #26  
Old 2010-05-16, 11:23pm
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I was picturing trying to heat a much larger area such as the middle of a cut bottle. I can't imagine trying that on a Hothead. Maybe the neck could be heated and pinched as you say. But I'd still want a hotter torch for that if it were me doing it.


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You can soften/melt most bottle glass with a Hot Head.

What you want to do is possible using a Hot Head; the obstacle is that you also need a kiln, which is not cheap. The reason you need a kiln is that if you don't bring the whole bottle up to temperature before introducing it to the flame, it will shock and crack from the heat differential.

So what you need to do is cut the top of your bottle using whatever method you settle on, and then fill the bottle with your glass scrap, place the bottle in a kiln and bring it up to about 1000 degrees. Then you will heat a glass rod in the flame and "punty" it onto the bottom of the bottle. You will use this punty as a handle by which to hold the bottle in the flame. Bring it to the flame and soften the neck, then use a large tweezer or a marver to push the edges of the neck together. Finally, place the bottle back in the kiln, and tap the punty to knock it off.

Different bottle colors, and even same color bottles from different runs, will vary in COE and should not be used together. Almost all will melt in a Hot Head, though some may take a while and time is critical when you're using a glass punty, as, if it cools too much, it will tend to break loose.

This IS doable, but not cheaply, and not as easily as you may have been thinking.

And yes, you CAN ask other people to tell you exactly what you want to know so you can avoid looking it up on your own, but it IS rude to do so without at least saying "I did some searches but still have a few questions", know what I mean?
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Old 2010-05-17, 10:45am
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I'm not sure what part of the bottle he/she wants to melt, but I kind of assumed the neck... if it's the middle, a Hot Head wouldn't be feasible!
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  #28  
Old 2010-05-17, 10:47am
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Thanks for the sweet, thoughtful, response and the effort that went into it. Promise I'll read the safety section. You were right on target when you pointed out that, ironically, the start of the misunderstanding and subsequent hostility, was that what I thought was a 'simple' question was in fact extremely complicated. Mea culpa.

Also, as far as courtesy and gradual introductions go, I must admit my social skills kind of suck, though I do think I mean well.

PS I think a kiln is out of the question for me both cost and space-wise. If even temperature distribution is one of the key issues, what effect do you think filling the bottle with sand and trying to gradually bring it all up to high temperature might have?

Also, saw this Youtube video where people were melting glass, copper and I thnk even steel with large fresnal lenses and sunlight. Hmmm... Must experiment. I'll let you know if I survive.


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Hum...how DO I find my way into these threads? Just a thought bubble before I proceed...

Taking this from the top, I'll say that being first generation American with an English grandmother; seeing your Avatar name, I can certainly appreciate British humor! Further, guessing you're a native New Yorker and having a much-loved Mother-in-Law who is a true Brooklyn-born Italian, I can also understand East Coast mentality! With that said, I hope YOU'LL appreciate that as a new member here, you won't find a better, more helpful group of people. Understand that we are like a close knit family...we support and encourage one another, and when necessary, we scold one another when it seems appropriate. Likewise, our ability to band together is like a scene straight out of the movie "300", so if you cross one of us, you cross us ALL!



To recognize one's own ignorance is a humble acknowledgment! Ironically, though, what you perceived as a "simple question" - especially to seasoned lampworkers/glasswokers - was a red flag that you were (in your self-acknowledged impatience) willing to forge head on into what not only seems eminent disaster but clearly could endanger both life and limb if you aren't willing to take the necessary steps to learn safety (always amongst the first rules of glasswork) and glean a general sense of how hot glass behaves. As far as being "denied" information, the "entitlement" you may have felt by a simple sign up (as opposed to slowly and appreciatively letting us get to know and guide you) will ultimately make not only the door slam shut in your face - and FAST - but more than will insure that extra effort is put forth to make sure it HITS YOU IN THE ASS!



I agree with you here - the internet is an amazing, information-filled, beautiful thing! I personally credit Gene Rodenberry - whom I regard as a true visionary - for not only the foundational concept of the "net" but many of the wonders of modern technology! ("Communicators" = Cell Phones, for another example).

Although, technically, no "dues" are required to be a participating member here, as with most communal environs of society...politeness, contribution and familiarity breed trust.



Your perspective here is PERFECT! Please know that some of the more intense responses you received were ignited out of pure concern for your safety! There are many things that can go wrong or endanger you while working with glass - either immediately (hot blowing-up glass burns like HELL!) or long-term (ventilation will prevent respiratory difficulties that can be irreversible and/or life threatening). A review of the Safety Section of this forum will give you lots of tips and probably save you some health issues and heartache!



I like this thinking, and that you've given yourself cause for pause! I have a similar phrase - actually taken from an old episode of "Zorro" years ago on the Disney Channel: "Only a fool rushes to his own death". As much as I appreciate your enthusiasm (I myself tread far beyond where most Hot Headers go!) I encourage you to take at least time to play with the fundamentals before you go full throttle!



This is an awesome, innovative idea! Don't give up...but do please consider that you may have better, safer success by combining both torch and cold glass work as have been suggested above. As much as I appreciate your enthusiasm, ultimately you want your idea to succeed and be a long-lasting success. It may take more than one way to skin this cat!



Apology accepted. I am hopeful that you'll read this response, take time to digest it in the true helpful spirit it's being proffered to you, and come back to start a new.

You just may find that it feels less like "defending yourself against an attack by fresh fruit" and more like aligning yourself with a group that can truly help you create your dream!

All my best,
De
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  #29  
Old 2010-05-17, 10:51am
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PS I think a kiln is out of the question for me both cost and space-wise. If even temperature distribution is one of the key issues, what effect do you think filling the bottle with sand and trying to gradually bring it all up to high temperature might have?
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If a kiln is out of the question, then whatever you're making is destined to crack. Your bottles will not be safe to sell. Please do some research on annealing glass.
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  #30  
Old 2010-05-17, 10:55am
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Can you find someone who does fusing or other glass work and perhaps borrow or rent some kiln time? Even so, I think the endeavor is pretty complicated. I lean toward cutting off the bottom and doing a cold join after putting in your shards.
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