Saturday, October 15, 2011

About My Supply Store, The Glass Goddess, Reason #1

The reasoning behind my supply store, The Glass Goddess is twofold, well okay it's threefold.

Here is reason number one-

I've had a lot of people ask me if I sell my dichroic glass cabochons or tell me I that I should.

I have to admit that I have a hard time putting my dichroic cabochons up for sale. I find that when I'm making them I am already creating jewelry with them in my mind! Those that I have definite plans for I put aside for my use. The rest I'm putting up for sale in my supply shop. If I decide I want to use a listed cab I can always drop the listing and use it. Also I have enough cabs to keep me busy for quite a while at the rate I'm (not) using them.

All of my cabochons are made using compatible fusing glass in a digitally controlled kiln. Quite a bit of work goes into the making of these and they are fired a minimum of two times.

I prefer clean, precise shapes in my cabochons. I think growing up in rockhound country has influenced my ideas of what a cabochon should be. Smooth, clean, polished shapes, rounded on the edges.

My cabochons start with me fusing dichroic sheet glass with either a base glass or top it with a clear glass "cap". I call these fused glass pieces "slabs".

I take these slabs and draw the desired cabochon shapes onto the slab. I take my time pondering and agonizing over the best, most efficient use of the glass slab in front of me.

I rough cut the shapes out of the glass slab using a Taurus III ring saw. As these are rough I use a grinder to clean up the shapes. If I think the cabochon is to thick I will use a flat beveling grinder to thin these cabochons. I do this more for earring cabs that pendant cabs to reduce the weight. I also grind a bit of a bevel on the edges to help round them out nicely during the fire polishing cycle. Once I've finished shaping them I switch to a channeling bit on the grinder. It grinds channel or groove that can be used for wire wrapping the cab. After all of this I prep the cabs for another cycle in the kiln. I treat the ground edges with a devitrification solution to ensure a shiny, polished finish. When the solution is dry into the kiln they go for a final fire polishing. When they come out I check them for quality. If I'm not happy another round of grinding, flat grinding and channeling will ensue.

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