Newbie having trouble

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    Hi everyone :)

    I’m new to glass fusing and am having a bit of trouble. I’m using my grandmother’s kiln which she used for porcelain – it’s a Ward LT3. I’d like to use it to make dichroic jewellery but instead of using up my dichroic on test fires, I’m just using some scraps of glass (my mother in law does leadlight work so it’s a mixture of all sorts of glass). My kiln just has a dial to set temperature (low, 1-5, high) so I don’t know what number is what temperature. I know there’s different COEs to take into account.

    I’ve tried firing at different settings and for different times but my glass just shatters. I let the kiln cool down completely overnight before I open it but that doesn’t seem to make a difference.

    What am I doing wrong? :)




    Glass used in stained glass can be all different brands, Spectrum, Kokomo, Wissmach, etc.  They will not mix.  They will shatter when combined.  You need to try glass from the same piece together.  They may turn an ugly color but maybe you could still find out the temperature ranges on the kiln


    On the one hand, I put so much energy in to fussing over the temperatures for each stage that having to choose between just 5 choices might make life easier.  On the other hand, I am a control freak and not knowing the exact temp would be a personal challenge.


    I echo the response above about mixing the glasses being your likely problem.  Even within a brand the colors can be different.  Unless its all from the same sheet you have to assume it won’t match.


    I’d say that the most basic problemm is the incompatibility of your glasses.   But even if you are successful in keeping the same COE’s together, stained glass is generally not meant to be fused.   But, I think the bigger challenge here is that you have an infinite switch that you can’t control the temperature of the kiln.   The best thing I can think of is that you purchase an external thermocouple that shows you exactly what the internal temperature of your kiln is at any give number on the dial.  Understanding the temperature of your heated glass is vital to getting pieces that are saleable.  An older kiln should still work wonderfully but you really need to understand what those temperatures and the ranges for the dial really mean.   Get the external thermocouple and start working with your kiln to see what it means when you dial it up to 2 or 3 or whatever number you need for the stage you are working on.  Good luck in your learning curve.   Charlene Fort

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