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Old 03-30-2004, 10:58 PM
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Cheng076 Cheng076 is offline
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Homemade bead release

Howdy all,

Well, since getting the kiln finished and programmed I've been busy making glass things. Some even look like beads others look somewhat like marbles ; can't seem to keep the marbles from shattering during the annealing process but that's another story and I'm working on it. In my reading of current and back threads and forums I have seem mention of making your own bead release. I am wondering what your formulas are and how you like them compared to commercial products; any special features, etc.? I think I might like to make my own especially if the ingredients are in powder form ansd storable.

Thanks in advance, PJH
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Old 03-31-2004, 12:44 PM
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Chae Chae is offline
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Re: Homemade bead release

PJH
Haven't made my own yet, but there are several books on lampworking that include recipes for kiln wash/bead release.
Will look forward to hearing the results of Your experiments. Let us know how it works out.
Good Luck
Chae
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Old 03-31-2004, 12:53 PM
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Feuervogel Feuervogel is offline
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Re: Homemade bead release

Here's a link to a thread on the ISGB Forum regarding homemade bead release.

Homemade bead release

Hope that helps,

Jessica
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Old 04-01-2004, 12:48 AM
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Ray Ansin Ray Ansin is offline
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Re: Homemade bead release

seemed to have duplicated my post here

Last edited by Ray Ansin : 04-01-2004 at 01:18 AM. Reason: post duplication
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Old 04-01-2004, 01:12 AM
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Ray Ansin Ray Ansin is offline
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Re: Homemade bead release

Bead release is very easy and cheap to make.
Most people use a mixture of aluminia hydrate and kaolin. I find that calcined aluminia can have less tendancy to form micro radial cracks when pre heated on the wires and prefer it to the hydrate. Pottery supply stores sell both alumina hydrate and kaolin.
If you use Aluminia hydrate then you can pack it into a clay pot and fire it to at least 1100 degrees centigrade to calcine it first. This drives off the water of hydration and changes its physical structure. The weight drops considerably. Allow to cool.
Take 500 grams of calcined aluminia and add 500 grams of powdered kaolin or I use a white high vitrification temperature. above stoneware, aluminous ball clay.
To this add 20 grams of powdered silica diatomite. Though not essential. Pass all materials through a 60 mesh potters sieve. Then add water stirring to a thick consistency. Pass this again through the 60 mesh sieve with the help of a rubber cooking spatula. Place into two jars. one for storage, and one for use. Add a high density bouncy ball. about 25 mm dia to the jar. When required shake the jar well " with energy" and the ball mixes the composition if settling has occured over a period of time.
Dip your wires and allow them to dry and re-dip them a second time to build up a decent coating thickness. Allow to dry and pre warm them before final burn out and use.
Some people add a little graphite to the mix to aid release. But the majority of this burns out in pre heating.
The hardness of the release depends on the vitrifiable components and the temperature that the release will be subjected to during bead making.
I have had no trouble with the release giving way during bead construction.
Occasionally I've blamed my release for cracked beads, but almost every time it has been due to elongated small bubbles in the beads producing sharp glass re-entrant angles and the bead has cracked from this point, or due to allowing the bead to cool unevenly while looking at it before putting it into the annealer.
This formula is used by many professional bead makers. Some add a little fireclay and others their own "sic" secret ingredients. ha ha.
I've used it for ten years and compared it to various commercial products but always can find no real reason to change away from using it.
regards
Ray Ansin
http://www.glassbeads.co.nz

Last edited by Ray Ansin : 04-01-2004 at 02:03 AM.
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Old 04-01-2004, 10:46 AM
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Molten Mike Molten Mike is offline
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Re: Homemade bead release

I use a 50-50 mix of kiln wash and diatamacous(sp?). Mix with water.
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Old 04-01-2004, 12:49 PM
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Cheng076 Cheng076 is offline
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Re: Homemade bead release

Good morning folks,

Thank you all for the replies and formulas. Especially to Ray Ansin for the very detailed reply. There seems to be very few central ingredients in release; Kiln Wash being most prevelent. Auminum Hydrate being the next most common part. These two ingredients are pretty much mixed in equal proportions. Kaolin, which I suspect is very similar to Kiln Wash, if not just another name for it, is used in almost as many recepies in place of the Kiln Wash.

Then there are the 'secret' ingredients; graphite to aid release, variuos diatomacious products which I think aid in keeping the release from setting into a solid 'ceramic like' material in the heat, and calcined Aluminia type materials, also to retard the hydration. There are other ingredients used in small percentages but I was not made privy to these secrets.

I am off to the ceramics supply place for some 'stuff' to start mixing my own formula(s). Then run some tests. More info soon.
PJH
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Old 04-01-2004, 07:51 PM
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fosterfire fosterfire is offline
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Re: Homemade bead release

Just a quick note from FosterFire - please observe all safety precautions.

You will be working with larger quantities of dry components than you would normally be exposed to. I would suggest a mask, safety glasses and reading the MSDS that (hopefully) they gave you with your purchase. No worries once it's all wet, it's the dry state that you need to be careful of.

Safety first!

oh yeah - and if they didn't give you an MSDS (Material Safety Data Sheet) then you can usually find one on the internet through Google.
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Old 04-01-2004, 08:36 PM
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nilaya nilaya is offline
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Re: Homemade bead release

I use the michael barley recipe that corina psoted on her site. 50/50 kiln wash and alumina hydrate. LOVE it! The only thing i have found with it ..you really need to use the mandrels as as soon as possible..if you leave them sit for a week or longer it seem to comparmise the integrity of the release and it flakes in the flame.

Lorretta
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Old 04-02-2004, 09:53 AM
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Lapislazuli Lapislazuli is offline
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Re: Homemade bead release


Hi to all
The Dave Bross
Bead release can be bought from lampworking suppliers, or you can make your own from 6-10 parts water, 5 parts kaolin or ball clay, 3-5 parts of some sort of flux like nepheline syenite or one of the spars, and 3 parts diatomaceous earth. All these things are easily found at a ceramic potters supply or a pool supply for the diatomaceous.

Lapislazuli
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Old 04-09-2004, 06:37 PM
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manda j manda j is offline
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Re: Homemade bead release

Quote:
Originally Posted by nilaya
I use the michael barley recipe that corina psoted on her site. 50/50 kiln wash and alumina hydrate. LOVE it! The only thing i have found with it ..you really need to use the mandrels as as soon as possible..if you leave them sit for a week or longer it seem to comparmise the integrity of the release and it flakes in the flame.

Lorretta

A friend of mine tried the 50/50 mix you describe above. She only left the mandrels to dry overnight. When she put them in the flame, the release all flaked off. Any ideas about what is wrong?

Thanks,
Manda
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Old 04-09-2004, 07:54 PM
wsimpso1 wsimpso1 is offline
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Re: Homemade bead release

Hi Manda, I've also tried the Michael Barley 50/50 mix that Corina suggested and so far so good. I particularly like the smoothness, I don't care for lumpy or rough bead release. I did find that I was unable to dry it in the flame, and the longer I let it sit, the better it seems. I think the flaking is the result of having too much moisture in the release when you present it to the flame. I do like the Super Blue Sludge slightly better, but I can't justify the difference in cost. It's about 4 to 1. Bill
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Old 09-20-2008, 01:57 PM
greyweaver greyweaver is offline
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Re: Homemade bead release

I used a recipe posted on the ISGB and "sort of" follewed it.

I used About 40% Kaolin Clay, 35% Alumin Hydrate, and 25% food grade Diatomaceous Earth. These proportions are by weight - not volume. I put ingredients in a large, sealable plastic bag and "tumbled" to mix.

I put about a quart of water in a large bowl and began sprinkling powder into it until it made "little hills" above the surface of the water. I mixed this slowly w/an egg whisk. Then- over time - (took me a couple of days) I added powder to the bowl, cover the bowl, and let it "soak in", then I stirred it in. I used most of the 5 lbs of powder I mixed. Letting the powder soak or settle in before you stir helps avoid having lumps in the mix.

I wound up with almost a half gallon of mix a bit thicker than sour cream. I put half a cup of this in a tall pill bottle, added some water to thin (about a teaspoonful) and shook it up ( dropping a small marble helps agitate it). Tap the bottle on the table to make any bubbles rise to the top.

I have to dip a mandrel only once for pretty good cover. Let it dry.

I thought I would be "adding and testing" for a month or so till I got a good working bead release. I was lucky. This mix is smooth, seems to hold together well while you build a bead on it lets the bead come off the manrel fairly easily.

My first mix. May never be able to duplicate it, but half a gallon should last a few years at least.

Things I learned in research:
Kaolin is for hardness
Alumina Hydrate is for smoothness
Diatomaceous Earth is for porosity.
Adjust mix according to your own desires.
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Old 09-22-2008, 01:04 PM
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Alan Cross Alan Cross is offline
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Re: Homemade bead release

I also use this...50/50 bullseye kiln wash and alumina hydrate makes a nice smooth mix
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Old 09-30-2008, 01:39 PM
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Re: Homemade bead release

I've used Homemade bead release for years and it's very effective!

Paula
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