Thursday, June 29, 2017

Brown Stained Glass Lamp Repair

We've moved back to our Midland Park home and finally got our computers hooked up!  So I'm back with another blog posting recounting a recent project.
This will cover the repair and cleaning of an older brown lamp .. Here's the process ..

This lamp belonged to my customer's mother.  It had been stored in a dusty attic for many years and was in need of repairs and a good cleaning.  When it came to me, there was not much light coming through the glass.

This side of the lamp had several broken amber pieces and green pieces.

Another view of the damaged side.

Here I'm making a template for the replacement glass after I've removed the cracked piece and cleaned off the old solder and foil from the borders.

Using an oil-filled pistol grip glass cutter to cut the new piece of amber glass.

Using running pliers to snap the glass along the score.
 Using a fid to burnish the foil onto the new piece of glass.

Now the piece is in place.  I've already added new foil to the inner border.  I'm brushing on liquid flux.  This is a catalyst which helps the solder to flow freely over the foil.

Now I've soldered the outside of the dome to lock the new glass in place.

Now I'm starting to remove the cracked green pieces and remove the old solder by melting it off with a hot soldering iron.

I've cut the new piece of green and I'm now grinding the edges.

Back using a fid to burnish the foil. The self-adhesive foil comes in rolls as shown, in different widths and with 3 choices for the interior color.

Now I'm cleaning off the borders of a cracked amber piece which I just removed.

Soldering the new piece in place.

After all the new pieces are soldered, I clean them off thoroughly.  Then I apply black patina as shown.  This instantly turns the solder black.

Here's the formerly damaged area, fully repaired with new replacement glass.

As mentioned earlier, this lamp was in great need of a good cleaning.  My husband Eric and I brought it outside and brushed on an industrial strength cleaner.

We put in lots of elbow grease, both on the exterior and the interior of the shade.

There's a puddle of brown water at the base of the lamp.

We used a garden hose to spray off the residue.

It's amazing how much dirt and grime came off of the lamp.  Even the brass cap is shiny again.

Here it is, still in the driveway but considerably cleaner and more attractive than ever.

Eric also re-wires lamps on request.  This one had dried wires which are dangerous.  So he replaced the wiring and added new sockets.

And here it is, fully repaired, re-wired and cleaned.  Now the light can shine through and the lamp can be enjoyed again for many years to come!   Thanks for entrusting this heirloom to us, Sandra Lynn!
For more information on my other projects, please click here to visit my website.

If you're on FaceBook, please click here to "like" my BoehmStained Glass Studio page to keep up with all the latest projects.  Thank you!

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Custom Stained Glass Closet Doors

And now for something different!  My customers have a coat closet which originally had wooden spindles in front of curtains on the upper half of each door.  After they tried a few different methods of updating the look, they decided that stained glass was the way to go, so they called me in to help with the project.  Here's how we went about it ..

Here are the original doors.

We discussed color combinations and designs.  This was one of the designs prepared for the left hand door.  It was one of several color combinations using an Olde English "B", which is their surname initial.  We chose opaque glass so that the interior of the closet won't be seen after the windows are installed.

They decided they wanted a different "B", so here it is!  The only change to this rendition is that the "B" will be green instead of purple.

Here I'm starting the pattern making process.  The Manila folders are on the bottom, with a layer of carbon paper on top, then the pattern. I traced all of the markings, lines and numbers onto the Manila folders below.

Using standard scissors to cut the outer border of the pattern.

Using double-bladed stained glass pattern shears to cut between the pieces.  These scissors leave a thin strip of paper to allow space for the copper foil which will follow.

Since the only difference between the two patterns was the design inside the oval, I used the same pattern for each door.  Here I'm modifying the design to accommodate the "B".

I marked the pattern pieces with both sets of numbers for each door.  Then I organized them into recycled junk mail envelopes, by color.

Here I'm cutting all of the green pieces first.  

Cutting the diamond shape for the right hand door.

Tracing all the red corners for both doors.

Laying out the pattern for the amber areas for both doors.
 For some of the curves, I used my wet ring saw.  It greatly reduces chances of a crack in the glass for cuts which are more difficult to do by hand.
 Tracing the border pieces for both doors onto a lighter color amber.

 Preparing to cut the light amber pieces.

As with all patterns, pieces may appear identical but in fact, they're not.  In order to assure that the individual piece numbers don't wash off, I'm coating each piece with lip balm.

Using "groziers" to nip off a small piece of glass.  These are used for small refinements to enable a good fit onto the pattern.
 Using the purple "oil-filled pistol grip glass cutter" to "score the glass.
 Using "running pliers" to snap the score.
 Grinding the edge of each piece of glass. This makes the glass safe to handle and enables the copper foil to adhere better.
 Applying copper foil to the center of the edge of each piece of glass.
 Using a "fid" or flat plastic wand to burnish the foil onto the glass.

Another view of the foil being placed onto the glass.

Due to the size of each panel, I've inserted lengths of copper reinforcement strips in between the pieces of glass.  These strips are the same width of the glass, 1/8", and become invisible after the soldering process.  They add a great deal of strength and stability to the panel.

Now the right side of the door has been foiled.  Notice that it is being held inside a "fence" or metal barrier.  This prevents the glass from shifting.

Here I'm "tack soldering" the pieces, which means I'm adding small bits of solder to the intersections of the glass to lock them into place.  Prior to soldering, I've coated all the copper foil with "liquid flux" which acts as a catalyst for the solder to flow freely over the copper.

Since the pieces are now locked together, I removed the "fence" and I'm sliding the paper pattern out from under the panel.

Here I've cut all the glass for the left side door.

Applying the copper foil to the left side pieces.

Left side fully foiled, still in the "fence".

"Tack soldering" the left side.

Sliding out the paper pattern.

Now both sides are soldered on the front.

At this point, I etch my name, month and year into the center bottom piece of the right side.

While I was working on the glass, my customer was working on stripping and painting the doors.  He decided to paint them both white, to make the stained glass really pop.  He gave us both doors after the paint dried fully.  Here my husband, Eric, is preparing wood strips to secure the windows into the openings.
 Eric custom-cut zinc channel strips for each side of the panels.  Then I soldered them in place at the corners and at the lead lines.  I also soldered the backs of each of the panels.

After the zinc frames were in place, I applied "black patina" to all of the solder.  This turns the solder black instantly.  After its allowed to set, I thoroughly cleaned off the excess.

Here's the cleaning product I use to neutralize and remove all traces of "liquid flux" and "patina".

After both panels are clean and dry, I applied "stained glass finishing compound to each panel.  This is a light wax which protects the patina and gives the glass a nice shine.

And here are both panels, ready for installation in the doors.

Eric is cleaning off the panel to prepare for installation into the left hand door.

He installed them in place using removable wood strips.  Therefore, if my customers should ever move, they can take the panels with them.  We create all of our panels and windows to be removable.

And here are the finished doors ..

 And here are my customers' photos, after installation ..
 And here's a night-time view.  They added lighting to the interior of the closet to set off the colors of the glass!  Wonderful idea.

Thank you Scott and Deb, for bringing us in on your project.  It was a pleasure working with you!!

For more information on my other projects, please click here to visit my website.

If you're on FaceBook, please click here to "like" my BoehmStained Glass Studio page to keep up with all the latest projects.  Thank you!