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Just a quickie...

I managed to fire up the enameling kiln yesterday and it works a treat. Still really should have a pyrometer for it but for now I can do things by surface texture and color. (I'd prefer to learn the glass without the extra technology that way I'm not dependent on it.) Anyway here's what a simple test came out looking like:


Not too shabby color-wise but obviously oxidized the copper. And the red enamel either didn't heat/cool properly or there was too much of it. No biggie as this was just a test. :-)

Now I need to get some copper PMC3 to see how well that works. Not this week though as we're still in the transitional period between me coming off unemployment and doing the temp jobs.

I've decided I'm not too proud to accept donations so if anybody wants to buy me some art stuff feel free to PayPal money to my greymane AT derpymail.com address. Replace AT with the @ symbol obviously. (More on the pride thing in a later post.)

Cross-posted from Dreamwidth ( http://nimitzbrood.dreamwidth.org/235232.html ) but feel free to comment here as well.

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( 3 comments — Leave a comment )
Jul. 8th, 2011 12:57 am (UTC)
You don't need a real pyrometer here unless you just want to look at the heating element itself. That'll tell you how hot it *could* get, but not how hot it *is*.

Forget about heating copper to glass temps in air and having it come out clean - it won't happen. Soak/brush off the crud and be happy!
Jul. 8th, 2011 02:32 am (UTC)
*nod* "The 'Fire Block' she does nothing!" ;-)

Seriously though some of the stuff I worked on tonight blew up in my face (not literally) but some worked almost as expected.

Stupid question - does the molten enamel have enough cohesion that it could be fired on the side of something - like a bangle laying on it's side for instance.

I had trouble getting it to melt to a smooth surface when laying the unbent length over the kiln and putting the dome on top. Maybe I just need to wait longer.
Jul. 8th, 2011 11:20 pm (UTC)
You might be able to fire it onto the side of something, but if it behaves like any other glass I'd expect it to run a bit. Dunno - as I mentioned before, I lost interest in enameling because I got a "real" kiln before I ever got around to trying it.

The red looks like it was undercooked - the outside fused but the inside only sintered, then cooled too fast - the outside cracked before the inside cooled. Different glasses certainly have different working temps; could be that color just needs a longer soak time than the others you tried.

I'd suggest making a better containment vessel(a modified refractory pot of some kind, perhaps? I never quite got the metal dome) and cobbling together a thermocouple with some kind of readout to monitor air temperature inside...

Even if your gauge arrangement doesn't show *actual* temp, as long as it's *consistent*, you'll then be able to experiment with various colors/thicknesses and come up with a repeatable process.
( 3 comments — Leave a comment )



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