Friday, November 14, 2014

Small 6-Panel Stained Glass Lamp Repair

This lovely little lamp is special to my customer because it belonged to her Mom.  One of her cats accidentally knocked it over and broke the only one of the 6 panels which had the artist's signature and floral artwork.  Here's how I went about making the repair.  (Click on any photo to enlarge).

Here's the lovely little lamp.  The damage is evident in this photo.

Seen from inside, with the artist's signature.  I offered to save all the pieces of glass since the lamp is very sentimental.

The first step is to remove all the glass in the broken panel.  Here I'm pulling it out with needle-nose pliers.

Its also necessary to clean up the borders of the space.  Here I'm using my soldering iron to melt off the old copper foil and solder.

Now the borders are clean and ready for copper foiling.

Below, I'm using part of a Manila folder to create a pattern for the replacement glass.

Its a perfect fit.

Tracing the pattern onto the glass with a Sharpie pen.

Using a flat ruler to press against, I'm scoring the glass using an oil-filled pistol grip cutter.  (If I weren't holding the camera, I'd be pressing on that ruler with my left hand).

When the replacement glass is cut, I run the edges along the bit of the electric grinder.  This makes the glass safe to handle and allows the copper foil to adhere properly.

Here I'm applying 7/32" wide self-adhesive copper foil to the edges of the glass.

Next, I'm applying the same width copper foil to the edges of the open space.  Then I'm pressing the foil onto the glass using a "fid" or stiff plastic wand.

Now the replacement glass has been soldered in place.

Then I apply two strips of the copper foil to the outside of the seam in order to match the rest of the lamp.

Before doing any soldering, I apply liquid flux with a metal brush, as shown below.

View of the copper foiled seams.

Now the strips have been fluxed and soldered.  I'm applying Novacan Black Patina to the seams using a metal brush.  This chemical instantly turns the soldered copper foil from silver to black.  After each step in this process, I'm spraying the area with Kwik-Clean Flux and Solder Cleaner and wiping it off with a towel.

And here is the repaired lamp.  Thank you Lyn for entrusting me with this sentimental gem.  May it shine on for years to come, in memory of your Mom.
Please visit my website to see my custom windows and repairs (click here).  And if you are on FaceBook, become a fan and I'll keep you up to date on all my stained glass projects.  Call me any time at 201-600-1616 or email with your questions. Thanks!

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