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Making Green Puddle Cabochons – Part 1 – The Puddle

Green Fused Glass Puddle

Time for a new fused glass puddle.

In our efforts to build up our stock of cabochons for our first craft market stall (I will post about this later), I decided to make some more striped puddle cabochons. Much like others I made some time ago, but with a green colour scheme.

A while ago I tried my first puddle cabochons, with mixed success. The puddle, though small, worked well, but I had a lot of devitrification when making the cabochons. A lot of time was spent grinding and cleaning off devitrification, reshaping the cabochons and fire polishing to get a better result. Some of those cabochons were reworked a few times before I was happy with the result.

It was a big learning experience but now I feel I have moved forward and have enough experience to get a much better and quicker result.

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Dichroic Slab for Cabochons

Fused Glass Dichroic Slab

Believe it or not, up till now I have not made any dichroic cabochons. Yes, they are popular, but I really wanted to explore making cabochons with plain colours first. Getting glitz from dichroic seemed too easy so I waited for a while before giving it a go.

Anyway, finally I decided to make a dichroic slab to cut up into cabochons.

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Making Fused Glass Zebra Cabochons – Part 2

Fused Glass Zebra Cabochons

In the first part I talked about how I managed to fuse up a slab from black and whites offcuts of glass.

In this post I will continue with details about cutting the slab into cabochons, grinding the edges and then the final fire polishing of the cabochons.

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Making Fused Glass Zebra Cabochons – Part 1

Black and white glass offcuts

Well, that’s what I like to call them. They are black and white fused glass cabochons with a sort of stripe appearance, so ‘Zebra’ seemed like a good idea.

These came out of me looking at a lot of black and white glass offcuts and wondering what I could do with them. Stacking them into individual cabochons was an obvious solution, but I was looking for something a little different.

If I could do a pot melt that would have been another idea, but I’m not so confident with that.

I decided on trying to achieve a random stripe, a little like zebras. The problem was, how do I achieve this result.

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Tumbling Fused Glass for a Fire Polish

Tumbled Fused Glass Cabochons

Devitrification and other problems, such as staining and foreign bodies, can render your beautiful fused glass cabochon or feature a rather ugly oddity. This has happened to me many times.

My usual approach was to grind or sand away the offending area and then fire polish the pieces. The grinding and sanding can be very tedious and is always time consuming.

After spending a lot of time doing this I became determined to find another option.

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Making Small Striped Cabochons

Striped Fused Glass Cabochons

Just out of curiosity, I was wondering how hard it would be to make striped round cabochons. Nothing fancy, just small round cabs in striped colours.

My thought was to simply layer up a few small strips of glass and full fuse to round cabochons. Well, that’s exactly what I did and this is how it turned out.

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Making Small Simple Cabochons

Simple Round Fused Glass Cabochons

One of the simplest fused glass items to make has got to be simple round glass cabochons. Well, that’s what I thought, but there is a catch, or two.

Small round cabochons are great for making things like stud earrings and for embellishing other creations. In the past I have successfully made these without any real problem, using transparent glass. But now I wanted to make some using opalescent glass. My research told me that Bullseye opalescent glass does have a tendency to pick up shelf separator and paper if fired at a high temp, such as a full fuse. But I had to try.

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Horizontal Strip Cabochons – Part 2

Horizontal Strip Cabochons

In Part 2 of this post I will cover making the actual cabochons. Part 1 covered making the part sheets that we will use for the small horizontal strips. If you haven’t read that, consider doing so, so you are familiar with how the part sheets were made.

So lets get on with making the cabochons.

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Offcut Puddle Cabochons Fire Polish

Fire Polished Cabochons

Recently, I tried an offcut puddle. A stack of Bullseye 90 COE glass offcuts were piled up on a shelf and fused until they melted down in to a puddle. This worked quite well, but a few pieces of opalescent offcuts did show signs of devitrification.

In the same firing Ann made a bar of black and white using multiple stringers for decoration.

Out intention was always to then cut the puddle and bar up for cabochons. Well, I recently received a new diamond blade for my tile cutter and really wanted to give it a try, so cutting the puddle up was the perfect test.

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Horizontal Strip Cabochons – Part 1

Horizontal Strip Cabochons

The design for these fused glass cabochons is really very simple. They are just a couple of strips of solid coloured glass  along with strips cut from part sheets made according to the tutorial on the BullsEye website. By mixing colours and strips from part sheets a lot of variation can be achieved.

Due to the amount of work required to make these cabochons I have decided to break the process into 2 posts – one about producing the part sheets, another to cover the preparation and creation of the cabochons.

So first to make the part sheets.

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Fused Glass Offcuts Puddle

Fused Glass Offcut Puddle

There is one rule in working with glass; never throw anything out. Fusible glass is not cheap and you can always make something of all those little bits and pieces you will have left over. I say ‘will’ because this is inevitable.

We have containers of small offcuts, in all colours and patterns, transparent and opalescent. Something I would love to try sometime in the future is to melt a stack of these in a dam and rake them with a stainless steel rod. I think the result would be fantastic. But that will have to wait.

This time I decided to simply pile up a stack of offcuts and fuse them all together. The intention was to create a swirl of colour in a slab that could then be cut and cold worked for jewellery features, such a cabochons.

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Rescue Fire Polish of Coasters

Fused Glass Fire Polish

In an earlier post this month I talked about a set of coasters we tried that were deliberately made thin to see how the glass behaved. The project was 2 layers, the base 3mm and the top 2mm made it under 6mm and hence subject to surface tension stress to conform to the 6mm rule.

After firing, the sides of the coasters did pull in as expected, but worse, the iridised glass unexpectedly resulted in rough edges.

In this firing we decided to try to rescue the coasters, as well as fire polish a few jewellery sets we made from a fused glass slab.

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