Monthly Archives: May 2014

Shades of things to come…

The copper foil tape I needed to finish the stained glass shades for my Arts & Crafts sconces came, and I took today off work to play in the shop (and clear my head of work nonsense).

I’m pretty close to having the sconces done, but I was so eager to see if it was all going to fit together and work out that I took one stained glass shade through to completion so I could test assemble a sconce.  I’ll give away the ending, it all fits OK.  There are a couple of details I may want to tweak in the design, but nothing major.

Copper foil tape.  For what it's worth, after using this brand I don't like it.  It's thinner than the stuff I have been using and it tore really easily when wrapping the glass.  Too bad I bought three rolls...

Copper foil tape. For what it’s worth, after using this brand I don’t like it. It’s thinner than the stuff I have been using and it tore really easily when wrapping the glass. Too bad I bought three rolls…

Parts foiled, lined up for soldering

Parts foiled, lined up for soldering

Front soldered

Front soldered

This is the back after soldering the front.  I was able to solder the back on these without re-melting the fronts and having to re-work the beads to make them attractive

This is the back after soldering the front. I was able to solder the back on these without re-melting the fronts and having to re-work the beads to make them attractive

Soldering the four panes and the copper piece to fit the lamp socket was a learning experience.  My first one came out s0-so, I think the next will be better.  Soldering an unsupported seam with gaps is a little tricky.  I used blue tape to roughly position the parts in place, then tack-soldered one joint at a time, tweaking it to get the best alignment I could.  Once all four parts were tack soldered I fit in the copper adapter and soldered it in place, then I soldered the seams.

Once it was all soldered it was the usual drill of washing the flux off, applying a black patina (a chemical that turns the solder black) then washing again, and finally using a special polish/wax to finish it off.

Parts for the shade

Parts for the shade

First seam tack soldered

First seam tack soldered

One shade finished, with backlighting to show off the colors in the design

One shade finished, with backlighting to show off the colors in the design

Same part without backlighting to show the iridized finish on the glass

Same part without backlighting to show the iridized finish on the glass

Test assembly to verify everything fits and lines up OK

Test assembly to verify everything fits and lines up OK

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I can’t believe it…

I thought I’d have finished these dragonfly sconces last weekend.  I was sure I’d finish them this weekend.  I just had to cut and grind the parts for four panels.  I had patterns made, frames to hold the parts for fit-up and had made one complete panel to make sure everything was going to work OK.

Yesterday I was positive I would be posting finished pictures today.  I got all of the parts cut and ground, I just had to foil them and solder everything.  Unfortunately I ran out of copper foil.  I was POSITIVE I have more of it on hand. but after looking everywhere, there is none to be had.  The local stained glass supply place is closed today, so I had to order some online.

Ran out of copper foil...

Ran out of copper foil…

So it’s the middle of the afternoon on a Sunday, and I’m –>this<– close to finishing a project, but can’t. Rats.

All the parts for two sconces cut and ground to fit nicely

All the parts for two sconces cut and ground to fit nicely

I made three extra frames to hold the parts so I could get them all soldered at once

I made three extra frames to hold the parts so I could get them all soldered at once

Two of the panels.  I'll buck the best two out of all of the panels for the front face of each sconce.  I'm using a solid piece of the same green for the back panel as it won't show.

Two of the panels. I’ll buck the best two out of all of the panels for the front face of each sconce. I’m using a solid piece of the same green for the back panel as it won’t show.

I’m not sure what to do now.  I guess I can start designing whatever I’m going to make next.  Maybe I should do the gate as my next project?

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