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Fusing Wire Inside Glass Jewelry

This is part three of a multi part tip on fusing wiring inside glass jewelry.  Click here to go to part one, which discusses the characteristics desired of a wire used in fusing.

Once you've selected the wire to use, it's time to figure out the best way to fuse it between two layers of glass.  Normally, this is done by placing the wire between the layers, then firing to a typical full fuse temperature.  However, it's not uncommon to have trouble with the wire moving around before it fuses.

Here's a list of tips to help keep the wire in place until it fuses:

1.  Glue is rarely the best choice.  Since it burns off at around 900F/480C, the wire often gets loose and moves around before the edges of the glass can permanent seal it in place.  (This happens at around 1300F/700C.)

2.  Instead of glue, try weighting down the outside ends of the wire.  Just use small scraps of glass as weights that will hold the wire down and keep it from moving around until the glass fuses together.  One nice benefit of this approach is that the scraps will often ball up in the heat of the kiln; these balls can be used as decorative elements on future pieces.

3.  Another option involves the use of fiber paper, rather than scraps of glass, to keeps the ends of the wires weighted down.  Start with 1/8" (3mm) thick fiber paper.  Cut a small strip square of the paper, around 1/4" (6mm) on each size.  Set one square under each end of the wire that's poking out of the glass.  This is enough to keep the wire from moving around and rolling out of position.  The small squares are reusable also.

Click here for even more tips to keep the wire in place until it fuses.

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Copyright 2005 Brad Walker.  All rights reserved.

This tip based on suggestions and tips from posters on the Warm Glass bulletin board.

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Copyright 2005-2006 by M. Bradley Walker.  All rights reserved.

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