Stained glass hobby

Collapse
This topic is closed.
X
X
 
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts
  • SHADOWFOX
    Veteran Member
    • May 2005
    • 1232
    • IL, USA.
    • DELTA 36-675

    Stained glass hobby

    If someone was to get a starter tools for stained glass hobby what would you buy?

    Also, has somebody ever combined stained glass with their woodworking project? Seems to be a good combination specially on cabinet doors.

    Will gladly appreciate any info or samples of finished project.
    Chris

    "The first key to wisdom is constant and frequent questioning, for by doubting we are led to question and by questioning we arrive at the truth." -Pierre Abelard 11th Century philosopher.
  • twistsol
    Veteran Member
    • Dec 2002
    • 2912
    • Cottage Grove, MN, USA.
    • Ridgid R4512, 2x ShopSmith Mark V 520, 1951 Shopsmith 10ER

    #2
    Stained glass starter kit.

    I've only worked in the Tiffany method so if you plan to use lead came, there might be some additional tools required. Here's what you'll need at a minimum.

    Pattern Scissors - A pair of scissors for cutting out patters (obviously) that cuts out a small in strip between the pattern pieces. This gap allows space for the soldered foil or lead between the pieces of glass. Optional but significantly reduces tedium of cutting every pattern line twice with an x-acto knife.

    Grozier - it is basically a pair of pliers shaped like a hammerhead shark with a flat end that is slightly rounded at the end. It grips along the score line made by the cutter and flexes the glass just enough to separate the pieces.

    Good glass cutter with a Diamond wheel and an automatic oiler. Steel wheel glass cutters will never last.

    Soldering iron with adjustable heat. You need to get the exact temperature so the solder flows without getting peaks (too cool) or flattening out completely (too hot). This is more important when using the Tiffany method where the entire seam between pieces of glass is foiled and soldered.

    Glass grinder to remove sharp edges from the glass, and to grind pieces to fit until your cutting skills improve. I'm still waiting for my cutting skills to improve but I've only done half a dozen projects over a seven year span.

    Optional but very nice to have is a Morton Board which basically looks like a large plastic waffle. It's used as a work surface for cutting glass and traps the tiny shards and splinters that would end up on your work table initially and can scratch other pieces of glass and will also end up in your hands when you try to brush them away.

    Also optional but you probably already have, a saw that can miter Zinc or Brass edging for windows or cabinet panels. You should be able to get away without edging on a small piece like a box top.

    I've done a couple of transom windows for our old house with the frames made in the wood shop and also cabinets doors for a built in bookcase in another old house.

    Basically anywhere you can use glass or a mirror you can use stained glass. The one caveat is that stained glass has a variety of textures and thicknesses which can make mounting it in a frame a bit more challenging that a smooth sheet of glass.
    Chr's
    __________
    An ethical man knows the right thing to do.
    A moral man does it.

    Comment

    • TheRic
      • Jun 2004
      • 1912
      • West Central Ohio
      • bt3100

      #3
      Interesting, what is the Tiffany method vs ???

      Do you buy the glass pre-stained, or stain it yourself?
      Ric

      Plan for the worst, hope for the best!

      Comment

      • twistsol
        Veteran Member
        • Dec 2002
        • 2912
        • Cottage Grove, MN, USA.
        • Ridgid R4512, 2x ShopSmith Mark V 520, 1951 Shopsmith 10ER

        #4
        Stained glass hobby

        Stained glass isn’t technically an accurate description. The glass isn’t stained at all. When the glass is manufactured, they add chemicals or minerals to it when it is molten which gives it different colors and textures. Some are mixed in, others are added to the surface when it’s still hot but after it’s been poured into sheets. Here’s the catch, this process also gives the glass different properties making it harder or softer so different pieces of glass cut differently. If you thought there was a wide variety of wood, the difference between picking glass and picking wood is like the difference between picking between all the world’s foods and the value menu at McDonalds.

        Here’s where my ignorance is going to show. The two methods are the Tiffany method vs. the “other” method. Think of a stained glass panel as a jigsaw puzzle where you have to fill in all the seams.

        With the Tiffany method, you fill the seams by wrapping the edges of each piece of glass with a narrow strip of copper foil and wrapping the foil over the edges so about 1/16th of an inch is visible on the surface of each piece. Once all the pieces are foiled, you assemble them on a flat surface, or in the case of a lampshade over a form, and solder along the seams between each piece of glass. Then flip it over and solder the other side. When you first cut the glass pieces out, you need to leave a fine gap that allows room for the foil to be added between the pieces of glass. This is also why a grinder is so important with the Tiffany method. If you have sharp edges on the glass, you’ll cut through the foil.

        The other method uses preformed lead shaped basically like an I-beam. The edge of each piece of glass is fit into slot of the I-beam and is secured with a paste. Since this piece is made of lead, it is easy to wrap around the shape of the glass piece. With this method, you only solder the ends of the pieces of lead to each other rather than soldering along the entire seam.

        The Tiffany method gives you narrower lines between pieces of glass but the quality of the lines depends entirely on your soldering skills. You can also make pieces that are lead free by using lead free solder with this method. The benefits of no lead are obvious if you’re doing kitchen cabinet doors etc. The other method is a tiny bit more forgiving of weak glass cutting skills and it isn’t as critical that the edges of the glass be square to the surface when cut.

        I took a class at a glass shop in Green Bay when I worked there in 1999. Back then all my tools I mentioned earlier totaled around $300.00 with the grinder making up nearly half of that. The class was two nights a week for a month and cost about $200.00.
        Chr's
        __________
        An ethical man knows the right thing to do.
        A moral man does it.

        Comment

        • SHADOWFOX
          Veteran Member
          • May 2005
          • 1232
          • IL, USA.
          • DELTA 36-675

          #5
          Thanks for the info. Reason I am asking is I would like to someday make something like this:
          Last edited by SHADOWFOX; 01-08-2008, 12:51 AM.
          Chris

          "The first key to wisdom is constant and frequent questioning, for by doubting we are led to question and by questioning we arrive at the truth." -Pierre Abelard 11th Century philosopher.

          Comment

          • L. D. Jeffries
            Senior Member
            • Dec 2005
            • 747
            • Russell, NY, USA.
            • Ryobi BT3000

            #6
            I used to do stained glass work (custom designs) for high end home builders years ago. So all that the tools "twistsol" mentioned are what you need. Only drawback to this work is the cost of the glass..it's expensive. Especially glass from Germany, which is bueatiful as its (some of it) not machine made. If I ever get my camera back from the shop I'll post some pics of my last s.g. project.
            RuffSawn
            Nothin' smells better than fresh sawdust!

            Comment

            Working...