The cracked pieces extended to nearly half of the lamp. Here's one side.
I marked each cracked piece of glass with a square of blue tape as shown. There were approximately 26 cracked pieces plus 7 cracked dragonfly wings.
First, I gently tugged the lamp dome into shape.
Each piece of glass has to be ground as shown. (Messy old machine but works like a charm).
Here are a couple of my other tools. The purple oil-filled pistol grip glass cutter .. and a pair of "groziers" which I use to nip off small pieces of glass. The pattern and the new glass are almost ready to be installed in the lamp.
Each piece of glass gets copper-foiled around the edge. Here I'm using a "fid" or flat plastic wand, to burnish the foil onto the glass.
Now the replacement piece has been soldered into place.
Now several pieces have been replaced and soldered. There are many more to do.
This is a precarious situation where the entire area is cracked. Once I start removing those pieces, they have nothing to hang on to. I use photographs such as these to aid in the placement of the new pieces of glass.
Here I've added a few more pieces, soldering them to the other new pieces so that the dome becomes stronger and more stable as I work.
Three more pattern pieces, three more replacement pieces. The green liquid is "flux". It gets brushed onto the copper foil. Its a catalyst which enables the solder to flow freely. Its also very caustic, so I carefully wash the area after soldering.
More progress .. More pieces replaced and a few more ready to be soldered.
Now this whole cracked area has new glass.
Here I have a piece in place and I'm brushing on the flux to prepare for soldering.
Here are all of the pattern pieces for the green glass, and for the wings.
Now all of the cracked green glass pieces have been replaced. I'm moving on to repair all the dragon flies' wings. Here I've cracked out four wings on the most badly damaged dragonfly. For the wings on the right, I've made paper patterns to cut new glass for them. A wonderful feature of this particular lamp is that each of the wings is made with different glass, some of which is iridescent.
Here's that dragonfly with new glass for the wings. They haven't yet been foiled.
Now I've applied copper foil to the edges of the glass and I've "tinned" the back, meaning that I applied some flux and a small amount of solder to it. Then I use "black patina" to darken the border. This is the side of the wing which will face out through the lacy metal which covers it.
Soldering inside the dome is always a bit roughly done since it won't be seen .. Here's a view of the four new wings (and the "chest") in place.
Now I'm cracking out more wings on another dragonfly.
More glass wings are now removed and were later replaced.
Here are some of the replacement wings with their patterns and the cutter. I matched the original wings with exact, or similar, color glass.
At this point, all of the cracked green pieces have been replaced. All of the cracked dragonflies' wings have also been replaced. Now I'm applying black patina to all of the solder. This chemical reacts instantly to turn the solder black. Like flux, this is another strong chemical which I rinse off with "Kwik-Clean" a spray meant to neutralize and remove flux and patina. After the lamp is completely dry overnight, I'll cover it with "stained glass finishing compound". This is a light wax. After the wax dries, I'll buff it off to a nice shine. The wax protects the patina, also.
Here's another "new" dragonfly.
And here's the third dragonfly, also fully repaired.
An aerial view .. Thank you, Ellen and Dave .. I'm so very glad you found me and that I was able to revive your beautiful lamp!
And here it is, back where it belongs, being enjoyed again. (Thanks for the photo, Ellen!). Happy, happy Holidays!
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