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Fire polishing optical filter glass

By Carolmoore Subscribe to RSS | March 20th 2012 | Views:

Glasswork has always been an art form since years past. Churches and other buildings with architectural or cultural significance sport colorful mosaics or stained glass that is testament to the artists’ talents. If you’re into glass making and would like to know how to get your pieces to look smooth and polished, read to find out.

Glass is fire polished to make it smoother and more polished. The resultant pieces are then used to design decorative pieces or other art work. Dull glass is transformed into a glistening piece and rough edges are turned smooth. Not all colored glass is meant to be used as decorative items, however; optical filter glass, for instance, may look colorful but its use is in photography and astronomy.

1.Before fire polishing any glass pieces, cut them into whatever shape and form you desire. If it’s a grinder you use, then soak the glass pieces in a bucket of water following the grinding process. Remove the glass and wipe them clean of any dust or dirt.

2.Whether it’s optical glass filters you are working on or nothing to do with medical and scientific purposes, you’ll need to paint at least three layers of what’s known as kiln wash. It’s slurry that’s used to protect the kiln shelves from getting damaged. Ensure that each layer is fully dry before applying the next two coats. If you plan on putting more than one glass piece into the kiln, make sure they’re separated by three inches as if they touch each other, they will fuse into one large piece.

3.Heat your kiln to 1,400 degrees. Depending on the type you’re using, your kiln will automatically shut down. If using cones, use a cone 6 in the sitter. Once the oven reaches the cone, it’ll halve and shut down the kiln. The entire procedure can take five hours.

4.To ensure that your optical glass or decorative glass is well and truly polished, leave the lid of the kiln closed till the next day as the glass can break if opened too early. Keeping the lid closed for longer ensures that your optical glass filters or decorative pieces are stronger.

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