Puddle Cabochons

Small chunks of glass, when fired to a full fuse, melt and round out in the much the same way a small, melting chunk of ice turns into a round drop of water. To create our cabochons (round, unfaceted “stones”), simply arrange chunks of your puddle on a kiln-washed shelf.

Keep these things in mind:
  • Don’t use shelf paper or fiber paper since both will interfere with the flow of glass and the rounding of your cabochons.
  • Take a picture of your pieces before and after firing.  This will teach you how to get different styles of stripes by changing how the chunks are placed on the shelf.
  • Stacking small puddle pieces on larger ones before firing can provide interesting results.
Before firing, your kiln shelf should look something like this:

Fused glass cabochons ready to fire

And here is a close up:

Close up!

Fire using this schedule:

Segment Ramp Target Hold
1 500° F / hr 1000° F none
2 FULL 1500° F 30 minutes
3 FULL 950° F 30 minutes
4 300° F / hr 725° F none


Once the firing is complete, your kiln should now be loaded with goodies like these:

Cabochons are all fired!

On to the next step...

Is the 1500 degrees a full fuse for your kiln?

My Paragon kiln full fuses at 1425 degrees. I was uncertain whether the technique you have described requires a bit higher temperature than the norm... or... it if the 1500 degrees is the normal full fuse when using your kiln.

full fuse temp

Glassy -

Full fusing temps vary for different types (COE 90 v 96 v 104) and brands (Bullseye v Wasser) and even colors within a type (e.g., different colors of Bullseye actually soften at slightly different temperatures), as well as in kilns of different sizes. There are also fairly broad ranges over which you can achieve a "full fuse", depending in part on how thick your stack of glass is, and how fast you ramp up to fusing temperature.  Remember that the pyrometer is measuring the heat of the AIR in the kiln, not the temperature of the GLASS.  The air will be hotter than the center of a 7-layer stack of glass during ramp up and most or all of the full fusing phase, and cooler than the glass during cool down and annealing.

When fusing two layers of glass with some frit and small decorations for pendants, earrings, bracelets and simple plates and bowls, you can often achieve the effect wanted at a temp of 1400 F to 1450 F, but this is not always enough for a thicker piece.


Fused Glass, Wood, Beads, PMC, Ceramics

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