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Old 02-24-2003, 05:08 PM
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Lenda Lenda is offline
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Stringer Pulling tutorial from rods

I thought I'd try to do a small tutorial on pulling stringer from glass rods. I'm using Moretti, but you can use any rod glass. My pictures really stink, I was trying to have my 13 year old help, but I think you'll get it anyways!

First, heat up a small ball of glass about the size of a really big pea or a small grape. You can see from my pic it's red hot at this point.



Then you need to count to about 5 to let a slight skin form on this ball of glass before you start to pull on it. I use needlenose pliers, but you can use tweezers, another glass rod, what ever you want, I just find the pliers work for me. Grab a small bit of the ball of glass, slowly start to pull, not too fast or you'll get hairs.


You have plenty of time to pull at first, but as you feel and see the glass cool, you'll have to pull slightly harder and faster. When you get the stringer pulled using all of the ball of glass, you need to hold it tightly, don't let it go yet, until the glass hardens back up. You will have the same thickness glass stringers with some practice. Just remember, the bigger the ball of glass you start with, the longer the stringer if thin, you can pull. If you want fat stringer, like 2 or 3 mm, just pull slowly.


I hope this gives some people a little insight on how to pull consistant stringers, Val Cox did a really good one using strips of BullsEye glass. It's a little different using Rods though.
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Old 02-24-2003, 05:46 PM
DonnaB DonnaB is offline
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That is a great tutorial! I am going to rate it now.

I wish I could have seen this when I was trying to teach myself to pull them. I do this the same way you do Lenda, with pliers!
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Old 02-24-2003, 07:07 PM
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midniteburner midniteburner is offline
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Lenda,

There is no real difference in pulling stringer from strips of glass or rods.

The pictures will help people though.

Sara
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Old 02-24-2003, 08:01 PM
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Lenda Lenda is offline
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Sara, I guess I meant strips of Bullseye compared to rods of Moretti, I remember Val saying that the strips don't ball up on the end or something??
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Old 02-24-2003, 08:15 PM
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I use a 4mm borosilicate punty to pull stringer.

If you keep the rod with the gather of glass at the top and pull down the rising heat will tend to keep the gather flowing longer.

Also, if you feel like the glass is going to pull too thin, try blowing gently on the thinnest part to cool the glass while pulling more slowly.

If you are working with a large gather (necessary if you are pulling thicker canes), I suggest that you not pull the glass over your lap for safety reasons.

I recently took a class from Larry Scott. We spent 2 days pulling an assortment of canes and learning techniques such as how to make uniform dots placed exactly where you want them. It was a great class.

The canes above the thin cased goldstone stringer (which was pulled from a lump of goldstone) are samples from class. Those below were pulled since I completed the class.
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Old 02-25-2003, 12:21 AM
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!ngridh !ngridh is offline
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M2!!!!!!!! wow...really perfect latticinos... so Is that Mr2 Or Ms2 ;-)

Here is a tip that Kimberly Affleck taught me...she uses a boro rod...that she heats the tip of so that it is smooth...instead of tweezers, she heats the tip of the boro rod and sticks it to the end of the gather...I find that the rod is easier to handle than pliers or tweezers...now here is the best part...we all know that boro and moretti are incompatible ...and this uses that to your advantage...just lay your stringer down...shortly the stringer will be detached magically from the pyrex rod...the incompatibility frees them...it works really great! Of course keep your pyrex marked so you dont mix it up...I just keep one on my table to use just for this ;-) It really works...
just one more of the many things that I learned from Kimberly Affleck!
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Last edited by !ngridh : 02-25-2003 at 12:31 AM.
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Old 02-25-2003, 07:31 AM
BillBrach BillBrach is offline
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One tiny difference...

Lenda,

Pics are great, congratulate your 13 YO, and maybe encourage them to take the camera outside and shoot all of those wonderful tropical flowers in your area !

My tiny difference...

Just before I pull (after the 5 sec skin-over), I flash some heat at the rod-glob junction. This is so that you don't end up with a lot of the glob still on the rod. To get the whole gather to pull out, it has to be a little hotter at the rod, than at the ball tip.

Sometimes, if the gather isn't too big, you can heat the rod enough that it "necks down" at the gather when you start the pull, establishing a larger stringer diameter.

M**2 - is that M Squared ??

Bill
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Old 02-25-2003, 08:01 AM
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M Squared it is... since mm is too short.
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Old 02-25-2003, 08:39 AM
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Hiya M**2!! Welcome to WC. I noticed that you haven't posted an intro in the Lobby yet. Could I nudge into it, so that everyone here can Welcome you??
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Old 02-25-2003, 09:57 AM
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Twisties and such

I love pulling twisties and stringer and such, but I have a question: In the great pic that M**2 posted, you can see that all those canes are smooth on the outside. Mine look pretty, but they aren't smooth on the outside. They're more like twisted wire, if that makes sense.

What am I doing wrong?
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Old 02-25-2003, 10:58 AM
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The canes are smooth on the outside because the glass from which they were pulled was smooth on the outside. Canes that look like twisted wire weren't fully fused before being pulled. In my experience, they are more brittle than cylindrical canes.

I make my canes using 8mm boro rods flared to 10-12mm (called Marias by some). I was using 6mm rods until I took Larry Scott's class. I like 8mm better. Boro comes in beautifully uniform rods of various sizes. Find one that is most comfortable for you.

If you use boro, be sure to keep the joints hot or the boro and soft glass will separate.

To make a cane of any size takes a good size mass of glass which should be very liquid when taken from the flame. I stand up when I pull mine and pull vertically keeping the end which seems to have the largest volume of glass at the top. If I stand up, I don't have a lap in which to drop very hot glass (another Larry Scott tip).

Resist the temptation to reheat the glass in the flame. The entire pull should be made out of the flame.

With practice you can pull a cylindrical cane of any diameter you need.

You will have a lump of leftover glass on each end of the cane. Leah Fairbanks suggests forming a loop of the pointed end and using the as pendants. If you pull many canes, you will end up with buckets of these ends. I throw them away... so does Larry. Glass is cheap.
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Old 02-25-2003, 11:10 AM
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Thanks for the quick response, M**2!

I get a huge molten glob from which to pull... All very well fused and melted. When I twist, I get ridges. I'm thinking perhaps I'm letting it get too cold and that's why the twist ridges don't melt in?
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Old 02-25-2003, 11:45 AM
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Hmmmm...

The glass should have a yellow glow when you remove it from the flame. If the glass is easy to control, it probably isn't hot enough.
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Old 02-25-2003, 11:54 AM
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Aha!

I only let it get to a bright orange glow! I'll try some today and let it get even hotter! Thanks!
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Old 02-25-2003, 05:27 PM
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A slight variation on pulling stringer:

I take a rod of the desired color and start heating a spot about 1 inch from the end. Heat it long enough, and the spot will bend so that the last inch will hang down. Double the last inch back over the rest of the rod -- if your bend is warm enough, it may double itself back when you flip the rod over. If not, just give it a little push with a (cool) tool or rod. Warm the end of a boro punty or a short rod of the same color as the stringer and attach it to the bend as a punty. While rotating both rods together (pretend you're holding one solid steel rod with both hands, rather than two glass rods with a droopy middle), heat the doubled-over area until drippy hot. Take out of the flame (keep rotating) and WAIT for a couple of seconds, then start pulling.

The doubling-over trick gives you a bigger bunch of glass to heat, so you get longer stringers.
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