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Need Help With Finishing Processes...

putty whiting patina wax

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#1 Golf Addict

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Posted 13 May 2016 - 05:45 PM

Hi.  I'm a green horn, newbie. Cabinet maker by trade 30 years. Making lead came SG panels for cabinet doors. So far so good, I have 2 identical panels. I've been watching videos, reading blogs, and learning every minute. I have soldered my panels and pleased with my results (not perfect, but one can only watch so many YouTube videos, should have watched one more). So now I've got flux all over the place. (not really, but you know how it goes the first time.)  Here's where YouTube and blogs give me some answers but not all. 


My goal: Black cement/putty, black patina.  I'm lost with regards to cleanliness, & time frames between steps, and don't want to rush, but don't know if I can proceed.  So I did step 1 below, and await a response to move forward.


Step 1: I made a paste of baking soda and water.  Applied with tooth brush, and then washed off with dishwash soap and warm water using scrub brush. Cleaned up ok. When held up to light, there are bits in the corners.  Q: Because I haven't puttied yet, do I need to get the glass spotless and all my corners spotless?  Or am I being meticulous for no reason, just to get dirty again?


Step 2: is Puttying. I'm using Studio Pro Black Cement (from Delphi)  Q: Since I've washed panels with warm water, I've drained them &  towel dried them, do I need to wait a day or two to allow any water in my came channel to evaporate?  Or will moisture affect the putty, causing problems?  A little bit of water/moisture ok? Putty contains linseed OIL...and we all know water and oil don't mix, so I lean towards evaporation...but no where does anyone say wait! Or...Don't wash with water, stupid step! Buy Flux remover cleaner & move on! (I need that kind of direction)


Step 2a:  So I work the putty into the came using soft brush.  Apply liberal coat of whiting to wet putty and work in with brush. The videos on You Tube stop right here.  Do I vacuum excess whiting off?  Wash it off?  Will the whiting mostly be absorbed into the putty? Will this be the only chance I have to clean up the putty and have to get this perfect?  Will this alter the color of the black cement much?


Step 4: Patina: Novacan Black Patina: The putty says to wait 24 hours to cure...so I'm not putting on Patina for 24 hrs. Should I wait longer for a better result?  Spray on liberally, and apply with bristle brush. (You Tube). Let sit a couple minutes, Wash with cold water, dish soap, and soft brush.  Should I patina before I putty? (I don't think so, but there are no videos patina'ing lead came that I've found.)


Step 5: Polish with wax.


Ideally, and hopefully someone can aid in my cause.  I truly appreciate any help at this point.




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#2 Rebecca



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Posted 14 May 2016 - 07:36 PM

No patina with putty.  The two don't play well together.  The acidic patina likes the basic putty too well!  If you patina first, the putty takes the patina off.  If you putty first, the patina weakens the putty.


When I do a leaded piece, I don't use water or flux neutralizer.  I wipe off excess flux with a paper towel, then putty.  I like to use putty that's the consistency of peanut butter and apply it with my fingers.  The first piece I did I used thinner putty and applied with a brush.  I much prefer "thumb putty."  After puttying, run a sharpened wooden dowel around the edges of the came to cut off the excess.   Also, don't apply the whiting "liberally."  I use a shaker like the ones in restaurants with parmesan cheese in them.  I just sprinkle a little whiting.  If you apply too much, you will need a mask to keep from breathing the cloud of fine powder that you will stir up.  After sprinkling a little whiting brush well.  If you need to you can vacuum up the excess, but I usually just try to brush it off and if the glass isn't completely clean maybe polish a little with a paper towel.  Then it's done!  No washing, no waxing - that is for copper foil.



#3 Tod Beall

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Posted 15 May 2016 - 11:19 AM

I agree with Rebecca's process. When you use the stick to trim the putty from around the leads, try to pick up as much of the putty as possible and return it to the can (before whiting!). I use a durable rag (corduroy, in my case)  to wipe excess putty off the leads before and during the whiting-thing and follow Rebecca's method.


You may find you need to go through the process several times; you will also want to let the panel lay flat for a day or two so the putty can set up. Some folks even flip it for a day each side (or so - observe what's happening and act accordingly). Then, clean some more... Don't let it sit uncleaned for more than a day!!!


The vigorous brushing with the whiting during all that cleaning gets the leads & solder a light to dark gray and the leads generally darken with time. Again, watch what's happening and respond - learn from what you see.

#4 stargazer99


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Posted 15 May 2016 - 04:46 PM

By your picture, it looks like you are doing pretty good so far. I agree with all that was said so far. I would let the water evaporate for a day or two before puttying. I like the peanut butter consistancy too. I sometimes use a plastic putty knife to push it under the lead then tool it with a wooden dowel. I always seem to make a giant mess with the whiting, so I use sawdust instead. Rub it around and let it sit for awhile, then vacuum it off. The oil in the putty will turn the lead black. Sometimes I touch up a joint to darken it up to match with patina. I've found when using 60/40 solder the tin in it resists the oils in the putty somewhat. I like to use 50/50 solder to solder the joints or use a little patina on a Qtip for the joints. It tends to react with the putty as mentioned, so don't let it sit too long. Dab it off with a paper towel. Then rub the heck out of it and polish with a little wax if desired. I also found leaving my zinc natural is good. Just use some 0000 steel wool and wax to scrub a linear pattern the length of the zinc. Hope this helps somewhat.

#5 Boris_USA



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Posted 21 May 2016 - 08:49 PM

All good advice.  Getting anal in trying to be clean between the steps is a waste of time, since your doing dirty work steps, one after the other. I use a small putty squeegee like used in a car body shop for applying body putty. It works super, getting the putty in the nooks and crannies. Also use sawdust first and then whiting, with a hand held electric show polishing brush. Saves a lot of hand work. ...

#6 Berna



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Posted 31 May 2016 - 02:40 AM

For puttying I use old credit cards, sometimes I cut them to fit the size of the glass. The added benefit is, that it scrapes the putty from the glass. Yet, it is messy work (love the smell of the putty, though!). 

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