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Do You Grind Before Foiling?


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#1 mstmorgan

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Posted 23 August 2008 - 06:55 PM

Hi,

I have always used the grinder on all pieces of glass ( with the exception of bevels ) prior to foiling. I was at the local stained glass store today, and another customer said that she never does. If it a good fit just foil and continue on to solder. Do you grind before foiling??? Or is it a common practice not to if you have nice cuts, that fit together well???

#2 Dennis Brady

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Posted 23 August 2008 - 10:48 PM

QUOTE(mstmorgan @ Aug 23 2008, 07:55 PM)  
Hi,

I have always used the grinder on all pieces of glass ( with the exception of bevels ) prior to foiling. I was at the local stained glass store today, and another customer said that she never does. If it a good fit just foil and continue on to solder. Do you grind before foiling??? Or is it a common practice not to if you have nice cuts, that fit together well???


No fixed rule. If the fit is good and there's no overhanging shards, there's no reason to grind. Your mission (should you agree to accept it) is to cut all pieces so accurately you never need to grind but at most just swipe the edges with a carborundum stone.

Practice.

Practice until you can achieve your mission objective.

Practice.


#3 Chantal

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Posted 24 August 2008 - 12:51 PM

If you are using came, especially wide came, you should not need to grind at all - like Dennis says, if the piece fits in the channel and the came is in the right place, you're all set. It's all going to be puttied anyway.

If you are doing an intricate Tiffany lampshade, you may have to grind everything - because more than just a straigh 'fit' you want each shape to have the right curves, the most harmonious shape. In this case I use the 1/4" grinding bit a great deal to show off the little nooks and crannies. Example:




Without grinding the pieces may look choppy and squarish.


#4 Dennis Brady

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Posted 24 August 2008 - 02:02 PM

QUOTE(Chantal @ Aug 24 2008, 01:51 PM)  
If you are using came, especially wide came, you should not need to grind at all - like Dennis says, if the piece fits in the channel and the came is in the right place, you're all set. It's all going to be puttied anyway.

If you are doing an intricate Tiffany lampshade, you may have to grind everything - because more than just a straigh 'fit' you want each shape to have the right curves, the most harmonious shape. In this case I use the 1/4" grinding bit a great deal to show off the little nooks and crannies. Example:




Without grinding the pieces may look choppy and squarish.


I think there are 4 distinct stages a glass artisan goes through as their skills progress in working with copper foil.

1. Beginner - tries to get good fits but has to settle for "pretty good" with some variance in solder line width.

2. Intermediate - good enough to get great fits that produce almost all uniform solder lines.

3. Advanced - good enough to get near perfectly uniform solder lines. Often uses different width foil to vary line width.

4. Elite - stops trying to get uniform solder lines and instead pays attention to the glass shapes and even intentionally varies line widths. Varying thickness solder lines have an organic look that is much more attractive then uniform width lines. The varying width lines have now become part of the design - as important as the glass shapes.

Here's an example of a glass artist that has perfected the Elite level:
http://www.robertoddy.com/


#5 wendy lee

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Posted 24 August 2008 - 04:13 PM

QUOTE(mstmorgan @ Aug 23 2008, 07:55 PM)  
Hi,

I have always used the grinder on all pieces of glass ( with the exception of bevels ) prior to foiling. I was at the local stained glass store today, and another customer said that she never does. If it a good fit just foil and continue on to solder. Do you grind before foiling??? Or is it a common practice not to if you have nice cuts, that fit together well???


I've been taught that for LEAD my goal is to not grind at all....that with practice cutting you can eliminate this step......But I don't know how you would foil without grinding. How well does foil stick with cutting oil on it? And the sharp edges don't burnish well, the sharp edge of glass slices right through..... I sliced through my thumb as a newbie when I forgot to grind a side. Mabye the pros have mastered not grinding, but I always will with foil.....

#6 Dennis Brady

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Posted 24 August 2008 - 04:25 PM

QUOTE(wendy lee @ Aug 24 2008, 05:13 PM)  
I've been taught that for LEAD my goal is to not grind at all....that with practice cutting you can eliminate this step......But I don't know how you would foil without grinding. How well does foil stick with cutting oil on it? And the sharp edges don't burnish well, the sharp edge of glass slices right through..... I sliced through my thumb as a newbie when I forgot to grind a side. Mabye the pros have mastered not grinding, but I always will with foil.....


1. There's rare need to remove cutting oil, and when there is, a quick cloth wipe is more then adequate.

2. The closer to vertical you hold your cutter, the closer to 90 degrees the break is. Such breaks have less shards. Any shards can be easily and expediently removed by swiping with a stone of the edge of your cutter.

Stained glass made using copper foil is not a new technique. It was employed for many many years before electric grinders were introduced.

The poorer the cut, the more grinding is required. The reverse applies equally. The better the cut, the less grinding is reauired. The goal for ALL glass cutting should be to minimize (ideally eliminate) grinding. If you can't score and break a straight line or fairly gently curve without producing shards that need to be extracted, you should examine the way you're holding your cutter and your stance while cutting.

#7 mstmorgan

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Posted 25 August 2008 - 01:08 PM

QUOTE(Dennis Brady @ Aug 24 2008, 05:25 PM)  
1. There's rare need to remove cutting oil, and when there is, a quick cloth wipe is more then adequate.

2. The closer to vertical you hold your cutter, the closer to 90 degrees the break is. Such breaks have less shards. Any shards can be easily and expediently removed by swiping with a stone of the edge of your cutter.

Stained glass made using copper foil is not a new technique. It was employed for many many years before electric grinders were introduced.

The poorer the cut, the more grinding is required. The reverse applies equally. The better the cut, the less grinding is reauired. The goal for ALL glass cutting should be to minimize (ideally eliminate) grinding. If you can't score and break a straight line or fairly gently curve without producing shards that need to be extracted, you should examine the way you're holding your cutter and your stance while cutting.




Thanks for the insight on this question of mine. I will be grinding for a will to come.
Dennis thank you for the link to Robert Oddy's site. What beautiful work.
Thanks again!!




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