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Using Glass Stringer and a Candle to Make Small Balls or Beads

Bending glass stringer in a candle is a common technique (see this page for instructions), but that's not the only thing that can be done with a candle and some 1mm stringer. Another trick is to use the candle to form small balls (some would say beads) that can be used as design elements in your fused glass pieces.

Light the candle. Then hold the stringer and place one end in the flame.  After a few seconds, the stringer will start to soften.  Wait a few seconds more, and a small ball will form at the end of the stringer.  Then the ball will drop off onto the surface below the candle.  Continue holding the stringer in the flame and a second ball will form, then drop away.  You can make dozens of small balls very rapidly with this process.

For those who don't wish to use a candle, you can also cut stringers into small pieces and fuse them in a kiln, but the candle technique is quicker and generally produces balls that are closer to the same size.

Additional tip:  Experiment with different colors of stringer and you will learn that each color makes a slightly different size ball. 


Copyright 2005 Brad Walker.  All rights reserved.

These suggestions made by various posters on the Warm Glass board.

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

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