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

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  #1  
Old 2010-01-14, 10:08pm
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Holly'sFolly Holly'sFolly is offline
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Default Tungsten pick help

I do NOT get how to use a tungsten pick. Every time I do, instead of putting a hole in the glass, it sticks to the glass. I pull off... taking part of my bead away, cool the pick and... the whole mess ends up in the water!

HELP!
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  #2  
Old 2010-01-14, 10:39pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Holly'sFolly View Post
I do NOT get how to use a tungsten pick. Every time I do, instead of putting a hole in the glass, it sticks to the glass. I pull off... taking part of my bead away, cool the pick and... the whole mess ends up in the water!

HELP!
Holly, heat the pick away from the tip (farther down the shaft), think of it as a hot poker that you drill thru the hot glass. Don't direct the flame right on the end.
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  #3  
Old 2010-01-14, 11:45pm
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What kind of Tungsten are you using? I am pretty sure you HAVE to use the green tungsten...Loren Stump referred to something like that when I took a class with him. Just a thought.
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  #4  
Old 2010-01-15, 5:42am
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I heat the glass a bit, not so hot that it sticks, but warm enough that it is just starting to move. Then I heat the pick to glowing and then pierce. It is a dance to know exactly how hot the two parts need to be. But with the practice thing... it'll come.

Kari
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  #5  
Old 2010-01-15, 7:15am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KariFL View Post
I heat the glass a bit, not so hot that it sticks, but warm enough that it is just starting to move. Then I heat the pick to glowing and then pierce. It is a dance to know exactly how hot the two parts need to be. But with the practice thing... it'll come.

Kari
Kari,
When I first started trying to use a tungsten pic I did not heat the glass at all. It was a total disaster. As soon as I started adding a some heat to the glass I wanted to pierce it made a huge difference.

Otter
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  #6  
Old 2010-01-15, 10:46am
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Yes, I think my glass is too hot. I think I'm going to spend the day piercing paddles!

Thanks everyone!!
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  #7  
Old 2010-01-15, 11:11am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Holly'sFolly View Post
I think I'm going to spend the day piercing paddles.
I do not use mandrels. Everything is picked.

Here are my tips:

a) your idea above is good, but consider making spacers (pierce marbles not paddles) by thousands to improve skill. solid color spacers with out the mandrel are one of the many morettee mysteries I have; why have you all not started doing this? i have heard all the reasons that it will not work . . . trust me, it works.

b) it can be hard to determine the correct ratio of heat between pick and glass. think about the issue in a zen way. t.p.'ing glass is a study in relationships. the pick is not a drill, it does not push through the glass: it cuts. the pick should cut through the glass. like a hot knife through butter. to cut the pick and glass must be in such a state that it is possible for the pick to raise the temp of the glass as it goes. understand? if the pick raises the temp of the glass as it goes, it cuts (this is good). if the pick lowers the temp, it pushes (not good). If the glass is permitted to raise the temp of the pick it will stick to the glass (not good).

c) there are three types of picked holes (successful ones)
1. the corn dog - where the glass wraps evenly around the pick
2. the mearotr crayter - where the glass makes a rim on the outside edge as the pick moves through
3. the china hole - where glass is moved from one surface into the center and out the other side.

so look at your holes and ask yourself, what kind of hole is this? to make this determination find out where the glass that was where the hole is, find where this glass went. if it pushed out around the pick it's a corn dog, if it pushed out around the pick on the penetrating surface it's a craytor, if it was run into the middle and out the other side it's a china hole.

each kind of hole has its place. look at the holes you get ask what kind of hole is this and is it the right assembly for the job.

d) focus on what happens to the pick, not what happens to the glass. okay. the things that happen to the glass are a result of what has already happened to the pick.

good luck, my shop's moto applies here:

The first hundred are irrelevant, the next thousand don't count, confidence begins at 1101.
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  #8  
Old 2010-01-15, 11:43am
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Wow, I'm not the original poster,but still...I never got it. .. I hated picking.
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  #9  
Old 2010-01-15, 12:24pm
AcidFly AcidFly is offline
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I can do it fine, my only problem is sometimes i fume the tungsten but that can be burned off, What does happen all the time tho is the hold is dirty and i can't seem to burn that off. I clean the tungsten before i use it but it still seems to get a residue on it that seems to get into the hole and make it look dirty and wont burn off.
I am using boro and well trying to make the hole in clear and you can see the dirty part in the hole every time.

AcidFly
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  #10  
Old 2010-01-15, 12:43pm
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I don't understand what this thread is about actually. Why are you trying to put a hole in the surface of the bead?
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  #11  
Old 2010-01-15, 12:45pm
AcidFly AcidFly is offline
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I don't do beads I was talking in general about using a tungsten pick to make holes in glass. Some are making off mandrel beads also.

AcidFly
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  #12  
Old 2010-01-15, 7:47pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gemsinbloom View Post
I don't understand what this thread is about actually. Why are you trying to put a hole in the surface of the bead?
I work off mandrel and don't make beads either. However when I did make beads I found many reasons to make holes in them other than the mandrel hole. For instance..... if you string a bicone on a necklace and the bicone happens to have a hole in the center near the bottom, you can put a jump ring at the bottom through the hole and hang a second pendant or piece of silver or glass drop etc. There are a many different design elements you can add by adding holes in beads.


Otter
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  #13  
Old 2010-01-16, 7:36pm
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It's working!!!! I'm having so much fun with this! Thanks to all of you who posted and helped!
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  #14  
Old 2010-01-25, 2:36pm
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Harold - thanks for the well-thought-out response! I really need to figure this skill out, time for some practice
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  #15  
Old 2010-01-25, 4:05pm
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I have yet to master the "hole thru glass with pick" thing. I know it's all user error! Peter tweezers no problem but a tungsten pick ACK!
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  #16  
Old 2010-01-25, 4:22pm
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It's not yet effortless, but Harold's description helped me a lot too. By 1001th repeitition I will be comfortable for sure.
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  #17  
Old 2010-01-25, 7:02pm
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I've been trying too...will keep on keepin' on with it.

I can get it to pierce the glass partway through, when I'm lucky, but when I try to withdraw the pick from the glass, then it sticks.

Obviously the glass is losing heat too fast and cooling around the pick...I heat the pick to glowing, seems really hot, and the glass is warm too.

....still learning to dance...
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  #18  
Old 2010-01-26, 5:35am
Angie09 Angie09 is offline
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Hey Otter,

Do you happen to have a photo of this bicone with a jump ring through it? I can't seem to "see" it in my head and it sounds really interesting!

Thanks in advance,
Angie

Quote:
Originally Posted by Otter's Flame View Post
I work off mandrel and don't make beads either. However when I did make beads I found many reasons to make holes in them other than the mandrel hole. For instance..... if you string a bicone on a necklace and the bicone happens to have a hole in the center near the bottom, you can put a jump ring at the bottom through the hole and hang a second pendant or piece of silver or glass drop etc. There are a many different design elements you can add by adding holes in beads.


Otter
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  #19  
Old 2010-01-26, 6:08am
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Angie, unfortunately no I don't and I don't make beads on a mandrel anymore so I can't replicate it for you. About the closest I can do is draw a picture for you maybe to illustrate the concept, will that work?

Otter
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  #20  
Old 2010-01-26, 6:13am
Angie09 Angie09 is offline
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Hey Otter,

That would be terrific!!! Thanks for the offer!

Angie
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  #21  
Old 2010-01-26, 1:09pm
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Hey All - good news, SUCCESS!!! I made a really nice hole in a pendant today with my tungsten pick.

Hint: for practice make a 1/2" or so gather of clear or light transparent, so you can SEE the pick going through - really helps! It was also much easier (perhaps due t the large diameter of my pick?) to drill through something thicker, rather than thinner.
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  #22  
Old 2010-01-26, 1:31pm
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Angie: It took me awhile too, to get the tungsten pick to work effectively. I hold the glass slightly below and slightly left of the flame. I hold the tungsen pick in the flame til glowing and then keep it there thereby still glowing as I pierce thru the glass which is still slightly below and slightly to the side of the flame. IOW, the pick stays IN the flame, the glass stays OUT of the flame.

Does that give you a better visual?

HTH!
Lea
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  #23  
Old 2010-01-27, 1:08pm
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The Brent Graber "Boro Basics" demonstrates this very well. I had never really used tungsten to poke an actual hole in glass before. I use it mainly for raking. The idea of heating the tungsten and using the extremely hot pick to bore a hole in the glass is how he demonstrates it (as Lea states above). Good luck!
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  #24  
Old 2010-01-27, 6:50pm
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...ack...melted my pick!!

PPP...got one hole but then the glass distorted...PPP some more
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  #25  
Old 2010-01-27, 6:58pm
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hmmm.....

Wikipedia tells me that the melting point of tungsten is
3695 K, 3422 C, 6192 F

....I'm thinkin' what I bought as tungsten isn't really tungsten
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