How to for Flame Working & Glass Bead Making - Sundance Art Glass Center
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A picture of working molten glass in a torch flame.

You can make Glass Beads!

Using a torch to turn molten glass into glass beads.
On this page, we will give you the quick lesson.

Just follow these instructions.

Dip your metal mandrel rod into the mandrel release coating. Dry overnight.

Put on your safety glasses. Secure and turn on your torch to it's highest setting.

Place the coated end of the metal mandrel in the torch flame a few seconds, just long enough to turn the coating to a lighter shade. DONT over heat it. Take the mandrel out of the flame.

Heat the end of a glass rod until a molten ball is formed.

Hold the mandrel 1/2" below the flame and heat the ball hot enough so it falls down onto the mandrel. The metal mandrel needs to be a bit hot too.

Keep adding glass by heating the glass rod and dripping the molten glass to build up the bead. Aim the flame mostly toward the glass rod, less at the built up glass already applied on the mandrel.

After you have built up a volume of glass on the mandrel, dont worry about how uneven it is, To shape the rough bead, rotate the glass in the flame to make the bead round. Making the bead symmetrical takes practice.

Take the bead out of the flame and place it between the fiber pads to cool slowly.

How simple. But there is always a lot to learn. Now you need to learn the many methods of decorating your bead with dots, drags, raking, adding flowers and other objects, adding gold leaf, encasing objects with clear, etc...

See our beadmaking kits!

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Sundance Art Glass, 6052 Foster Rd., Paradise, CA, 95969-3121, USA
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