New glass Experiments

We’ve all seen those cute little cheese boards (or whatever they are) made from melted (slumped) bottles.
Here’s one of mine:

I wanted to do a few more glass items but not having much Dichroic aside from black and clear, I decided to smash a few bottles and see how that worked.
Bottle are hard to break.  Unless of course you drop them on concrete, but I needed to minimise the mess and little nasty bits with kids and dog wandering around.

So with safety glasses on and hammer at the ready I put a board in the laundry tub, covered it with paper and break the bottles.  Even with a board, the glass still bounced a bit and took about 6 hits before it succumbed to the pressure.

last remnants of a bottle

I now have 2 green wine bottles, 1 brown beer bottle and a clear juice bottle broken and in their storage boxes.

I have tried several pieces of each glass to see how they melt and if multiple pieces will join nicely.

The only difference between these and my Dichroic is that this stuff smokes like crazy and the fumes are really bad.  Dichroic only smokes a little bit and the fumes are not so toxic.
Two windows wide open allows for good ventilation – providing the wind is blowing the right way.
A cold night is not the time to have glass cooking in the kiln.
A sunny day is definitely preferrable.

I have a brown piece, a green one I think would be perfect as a guitar Wrapture and there is a clear one with branches in the kiln cooling.
The glass goes into the kiln, reaching 800C then cooking for 30 mins.  This is a one hour process.  The glass is then left for at least 8 hours to cool and anneal properly.  Although I did drop a piece on the floor and it still breaks like normal glass. Oops.

I would like to open the kiln at the 800C mark and stamp the glass while it is still red-hot and see how it cools.  Hence my mention of gardening gloves.  This will be something I try next time.

Here is the first piece of beer glass I made as a necklace.
All I want now is some of that pretty blue glass, or yellow…. wonder if the people at the tip will let me take it out of the recycling bins..

Keep smiling 🙂

12 responses to “New glass Experiments

  1. How cool:) You are quite the intrepid artist. I think I’d be too nervous to try melting glass, I’d burn the house down somehow.


  2. Very cool, “Green” creations! Keep up the good work!


  3. This is really clever. I want to have a go. Any tips on how to start?


    • hmmm.. do you have a kiln? That would be the first thing. Email me if you need anything else. I don’t know what you can or can’t do. 🙂


      • Can’t do anything!

        My husband has explained that I need a kiln, but says if I order some stuff off the internet he will help me with a very simple, basic experiment involving a blow torch. I can’t wait, he doesn’t normally let me play with fire.

        I’ll let you know…


      • I haven’t got as far as a blow torch. Not interested. But if you want to make your own beads, its a must. I’m happy with my kiln. I have friends who could help out if you want.


      • Mmm. He made it sound as if the blowtorch would be simpler. Perhaps I need to investigate before getting so enthused. Still, your post was very inspiring.


      • I’m mot sure simpler would be the answer, even though I have not tried it. It is a naked flame, and you have hot melted glass right there. A kiln, everything is contained and it’s just heat. I look forward to hearing what you decide to do. 🙂


  4. Hi, Jen,

    I love that you’re always working on new ways to deal with old materials.


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