May your purse always hold a coin or two.
May the sun always shine on your windowpane.
May a rainbow be certain to follow each rain.
May the hand of a friend always be near you.
May God fill your heart with gladness to cheer you.
I only hope that I can do justice to this instructable and to those reading it, so anyone who wishes can make one for themselves. Following these instructions you should be able to create your own work of art in glass at home Don't let stained glass become a dying art form!
What you will need:
The Pattern (2 or more copies is best to have)
Glass scoring blade
A suitable cutting surface (I use a grid for a drop ceiling placed over an old xerox glass plate)
A light table (the above surface is placed on an old aquarium stand with a clip-on work light below it)
Glass marker (a china marker works well since it will not wash off easily)
A flat surface with a large work area (mine is made from an old wire spool that is 4 ft in diameter and 3 feet high when turned on it's side)
A glass grinder
Copper tape (for Tiffany style stained glass. You can also do this using lead or lead free H came and glass putty)
Zinc U-came or sun catcher came)
70/30 Solder (type used for stained glass. Do NOT use plumbers solder or any solder with a solid core or acid core)
A small brush or Q-tip to apply flux
Aluminum push pins (to hold the pieces of glass in place while soldering)
A cork board (to piece and to hold the pieces for soldering)
A good soldering iron with a 3/8 in flat tip (you can purchase a tip especially for soldering stained glass)
Soldering iron tip in 1/8 inch for any decorative soldering
Coarse bristle brush
A mild ddetergent
Wipe-on patina (if desired)
Carnuba wax or good quality car polish
Soft cloths (for cleaning, polishing and just to keep handy as needed)
and of course the glass-
1 sq ft of green (or color choice for dress and head piece)
1 sq ft pale pink, or flesh tone
1 sq ft golden yellow (or your choice of hair color
1/3 sq ff or red (or desired flower color)
2 sq ff or clear architectural glass for background
EYE PROTECTION ALWAYS!
Gloves for working with chemicals and when grinding glass
Band-aids (because no matter how experienced you are you never know when you might get a nick)
Working with glass can be dangerous, as well as the chemicals and equipment you will be using. For my own shop I stick to these rules:
NO eating, drinking or smoking (you may have pieces of glass or chemicals on your hands that will transfer to your mouth and cause harm).
NO bare feet or open tow shoes (and although I am known as the barefoot bohemian I do wear moccasins when working. There are almost always slivers of glas or metal on the floor!
NO cchildren under the age of 12.
No pets, no matter how much they whine wanting in there
NO unattended persons are allowed in the shop at any time.
If you chose to follow this instructable to make you a stained glass piece, please follow ALL safety guidelines.
Step 1: Prepare you pattern and glass
You will want two copies (minimum) of the pattern. Since this is a design I tend to make often, I cover one pattern in clear contact paper to protect it from moisture.
Next choose the colors you want for your piece. This is an Irish maiden and green is my favorite color so have chosen green for her dress and head piece, red for her flower and a yellow/golden yellow for her hair, for the skin I have chosen a pale pink/flesh tone.
Make sure all your glass is clean before starting.
Lay put your pattern on a light table to begin tracing the pattern. When tracing pieces it is best to leave at least 1/2 inch or more between pieces. Although this may seem wasteful, it is far less wasteful than losing multiple pieces due to breakage when cutting too close together.
Use a marker that will be easily visible on the surface of the glass. China markers work well, and will stay intact somewhat when grinding the glass. I have not found any marker that will stay on throughout the entire process of cutting and sizing the piece.
Things to know about glass:
All glas has a right and a wrong side to score on. Even in the smoothest appearing glass, you will a "grain" or pattern that lets you know which side or the glass was on the bottom during the glass making process. You want to score your glass on this side, and it is best for you to mark it on this side.
There are different levels of quality in glass. Many hobby stores which carry glass will carry "end run" pieces. This is the glass that was literally at the end of the run, and is often filled with bubbles, fractures and stress areas that can make scoring it cleanly difficult. It is best to get your glass pieces from a reputable glass dealer. The extra money will pay off in less scrap glass in the end.
I keep a no scrap policy for my shop. Not that there isn't left over pieces after scoring out a pattern, but even the tiniest pieces can be put to use in some way. I keep bins for my "scrap", and it is used in other projects or sometimes sold in bulk to people looking for glass for mosaics.
Now that you know which glass you want to use, and which side is up, Start marking out the pattern pieces to be scored. It is a good idea to number your pieces so you don't have to search and guess as to where they go later. This is particularly true with patterns that contain a large number of pieces. Some patterns may contain 10's of thousands of iindividual pieces.
If you have ever cut out cookies, you can apply this idea to marking out your pattern. However, you cannot squish up and re-roll the glass like cookie dough.
You also want to pay attention to the direction of the grain and any pattern in the glass. (more on this when the "hair" pattern pieces are marked out)