Making Dichroic Pool Cabochons, Fused Glass Project Tutorial

These fused glass dichroic cabochons have a pool-like effect. Like looking down through a pool of water to a dichroic bottom. Some of the dichroic layer breaks up and floats up the sides of the cabochon towards the top of the cab, to form the edges of the pool.

The video tutorial includes the design, materials, and equipment information, as well as cutting the odd-shaped glass, plus coldworking with a grinder and sandblasting. Finally, I cover the full fusing, fire polishing, and glass slumping.

Project Information

Video Making Dichroic Cabochons

In the YouTube video, you will find links to related videos, a chapter list with time stamps, and links to more resources.

Don’t forget, the glass I use is Bullseye 90 COE. I use Thinfire fiber paper on the shelf, but when fire polishing on my shelf, and slumping in moulds, I spray with boron nitride mould release.

As you will see in the video, I call these ‘pool cabochons’ because it really is like looking into the clear waters of a pool. Around the edges of the pool, on the top of the cabochon, the dichroic layer has broken up, floated to the top of the cab, and now forms what looks like the ground around the pool or something like floating lilies. Yep, my imagination is running a bit wild.

But they doo look fantastic, even the ones that don’t form properly.

So, what is there to be aware of?

First, the glass is 3 mm black base, with 3 mm or 2 mm dichroic on clear. 3 mm is always my preference, but this will still work with 2 mm.

Make sure you place the dichroic side of the capping glass down against the black base. The other way around produces a completely different result.

Try to keep the top and bottom pieces the same size and shape. If anything, the dichroic cap can be slightly smaller. Rectangles will usually become ovals, square will become round. Unfortunately, not always. If the glass cap moves, or it has a texture, or you don’t fuse it long enough, it may be an odd shape. No real problem unless you really wanted a uniform oval or circle.

Of course, you don’t have to use a black base. Other colours will work, but the colours of the dichroic will be affected. But worth trying.

Make sure you fuse well and give them time to form to your desired shape. Yes, this will affect the final colours of the dichroic layer. If you’re not aware, heat work affects the colour of most glass, but with dichroic glass, this is more pronounced. The colours will most likely shift towards the blue end of the spectrum.

You can fuse these to the processing temp as fast as you can because they are small and the temperature will equalise through the glass quickly. Similarly, just let the kiln cool naturally.

As I mentioned in the video, you can’t really coldwork these. Any grinding of the sides etc. will remove the dichro that has floated to the surface. What comes out of the kiln is what you get.

If you have any questions please ask in the comments section on YouTube.

Full Fuse Firing Schedule

  • #1 – Full up to 805 C (1480 F), hold 10-15 minutes, or until you achieve your desired shape
  • #2 – Turn off the kiln and allow it to cool naturally.

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