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Glue in the Kiln

Glue in the Kiln

There is a lot to chat about when it comes to glue in glass fusing. Let’s start with these cute little owls with wonky eyes. They started out with the pupils glued to the white nugget eyes. Since the glue cooks off at about 450F, the eyes just slid off the nuggets and landed where they wanted during firing! Solution? Drill a bit of a hole and the little dots will stay put and you will have sweet little eyes like the one in the second picture (done by Liz Watts of Rocky Coast Treasures). There are many different glues that behave differently and have different uses. Let's take a look at a few! GlasTac Blue Gel This blue gel has a thick viscosity and minimizes slipping even when not dry. GlasTac Pink Use the pink glue on something already set in place. The pink glue is runny and if you squeeze a tiny drop next to the element it will wick under the glass. Aloe Vera This is good for when you don’t want it to “set up”. It keeps pieces stable, but you can keep moving them about. Best to use generics because the name brands have added ingredients that can cause trouble. Hair Spray When do you use hair spray on your hair? When you are done! Same with using it on glass. It is a top-down adhesive. You spray to keep something as you have it, especially little things like fine frit. Buy it cheap with a pump. HoneyDoo Glue A gel consistency with quick set times and a clean bond. It has a stiletto tip nozzle which allows precision. Great for glass fusing. Super New Glue Our favorite super glue here at Stained Glass Express, it is formulated to dry clear. It comes in a tiny bottle so you don't have to worry about it drying out before you get a chance to use it! SOME GLUING TIPS: Put glue close to the edge of the top piece so that it can dry quicker. Stuck to the wrong place? Hopefully you put the glue near the edge! Use a razor blade to carefully scrape at the glue. Superglue that is not specifically designed for fusing may not dry clear and can give off toxic fumes during firing. Here is some helpful info. How do I unstick my fingers? (This section reproduced from How Stuff Works) Let's say you're repairing some broken pottery and before you can say "Whoops," you've glued your index finger to your thumb! The recommended first aid treatment for this is:
  1. Scrape off any excess glue. Don't use cloth or tissue -- a chemical reaction between the fabric and glue could potentially cause burns or smoke.
  2. Soak the bonded fingers in a bath of warm, soapy water.
  3. Don't try forcing the fingers apart, or you'll tear the skin.
  4. After soaking, use dull, rounded utensil to carefully wedge the fingers apart.
  5. If you see no immediate success with this, drop a little acetone (found in nail polish remover) on the area. Again, try wedging the digits apart.
At first, the thought of someone getting Super glue on his or her mouth seems outlandish. But let's face it a lot of us have a bad habit of using our teeth to wrench or twist off particularly stubborn caps. Say you do that with the top of the tube of glue and, presto, you've given an entirely new meaning to the phrase "zip it." In order to unzip those lips, your options on what to do are a little more limited:
  • Since you're dealing with an area on the face, do not use acetone.
  • Using a wide coffee cup or bowl, immerse your mouth in hot water.
  • You will also want to dampen the bonded skin from the inside of your mouth as much as possible.
  • Once you sense a loosening of the grip, use a dull, rounded utensil to wedge your mouth open. Be careful not to force it, or you will tear the skin.
Of course, glue is made for keeping things together; researchers have modified super glue to become less toxic, making it an ideal replacement for stitches (even veterinarians use it!) So if you've got yourself stuck and find the instructions above aren't working, we recommend you seek professional medical help! What's your favorite type of glue for fusing? Have you experienced any kiln disasters that eventually came down the type of glue that was used? Let us know in the comments below!

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