Glassatelier Hebing Efteland's

014 HotPot Norge Glassatelier Hebing Efteland by

Q&A

From HotPotter to HotPotter

 

In this blog you will find HotPot related tips, advice and how-tos to improve your glass fusing and have an enjoyable time!

 

Feel free to drop us a question, if it's been on your mind, chances are someone else has been wondering about it too and you'll be doing everybody a big favour :o)

By hotpotnorge, Jan 29 2012 10:51AM

Testing out the HotPot starter pack some time ago we had lots of fun and at the same time wanted to make more pieces with “depth”.


We did see so many nice cabochons on the internet that were so pretty and delicate in appearance it was very inspiring.

Also realizing that these nice pieces were made by people with loads of experience we wanted to see how fast we could get to their level, more or less.


By looking at these pictures we concluded that the dichroic glass was a big part of the answer.


That’s strange, we used dichros from the HotPot starter pack and while it gives nice results it wasn’t what we were looking for. How to improve on this?


The eureka moment came when we combined dichroic on black with clear dichroic glass over it. Also a colored base with clear dichroic on top gives very interesting results. As with clear dichro over millefiore.


We realized that if the clear dichro is used upside down (i.e. the dichro film side of the glass faces up) the piece comes out cloudy.


We hope this info will help everybody to diversify the pieces they make and get even more satisfaction out of the HotPot.


Yvette and Fred



Picture below: "London calling"


Made on a white background with PreCuts hearts, red and black frit, two small millifiore and clear dichro. Topped off with a layer of clear glass.


London calling
London calling

By HotPot Norge, Jan 20 2012 11:00AM

Dichroic glass is glass containing multiple micro-layers of metals or oxides which give the glass dichroic optical properties.


The main characteristic of dichroic glass is that it has a particular transmitted color and a completely different reflected color, as certain wavelengths of light either pass through or are reflected. This causes an array of color to be displayed. The colors shifts depending on the angle of view.



Invention

Modern dichroic glass is available as a result of materials research carried out by NASA and its contractors, who developed it for use in dichroic filters. However, dichroic glass dates back to at least the 4th century AD.



Manufacture

Multiple ultra-thin layers of different metals (such as gold or silver); oxides of such metals as titanium, chromium, aluminum, zirconium, or magnesium; or silica are vaporized by an electron beam in a vacuum chamber.


The vapor then condenses on the surface of the glass in the form of a crystal structure. A protective layer of quartz crystal is sometimes added.


The finished glass can have as many as 30 to 50 layers of these materials, yet the thickness of the total coating is approximately 30 to 35 millionths of an inch (about 760 to 890 nm).


The coating that is created is very similar to a gemstone and, by careful control of thickness, different colors may be obtained.



Artists

Dichroic glass is now available to artists through dichroic coating manufacturers. Glass artists often refer to dichroic glass as "dichro".


Dichroic glass is specifically designed to be hot worked but can also be used in its raw form. Sculpted glass elements that have been shaped by extreme heat and then fused together may also be coated with dichroic afterwards to make them reflect an array of colors.


By hotpotnorge, Jan 8 2012 03:48PM

During our demonstration of the Hotpot microwave kiln we got several times the next two questions. Which is exactly the same questions I did have when I started to use the HotPot microwave kiln.


What does the COE.. in glass fusing stand for?


COE stands for Coefficient of Expansion and is used in the world of glass fusing as a compatibility code.


If you fuse glass always stick with the same COE code.

For example if you put COE 90 and COE 96 in a design and fire it in your HotPot or fusing oven, the difference in expansion will cause surface tension and make the glass crack.

This will happen when the glass expands during firing or contracts under the cooling down period.


At the same time it tells something about the hardness of the glass. The lower the number the harder the glass. For example, an ordinary bottle has a COE 38 code and a lamp worker uses much softer glass like COE 104.


Can I use the glass that I’ve got in the barn in the HotPot?

The problem with fusing 'found' glass is that you have no idea what the COE is.

So it isn’t recommended to use this with the glass supplied in the HotPot starter pack.


Hope this will help and if you got more questions about the Hotpot microwave kiln let me know and I’ll do my best to answer them.



Fred Hebing


By HotPot Norge, Jan 6 2012 11:00AM


A microwave kiln is a device that crafters use to fire small art projects in a microwave oven.

While some crafters use it to fire ceramics or process precious metal clays, the most common use is to fuse small pieces of glass as part of the jewelry-making process.

This type of kiln has numerous benefits — namely cost, time efficiency, and convenience.


Microwave kilns are cylindrical in shape and consist of a base piece and a cover made from a combination of ceramic and refractory board. Refractory board is a material that can withstand high temperatures and act as an insulator.


To use a microwave kiln, place the fiber and thin fire paper in the middle of the base piece.


Put the glass on top of these papers and place the base with the glass in the middle of the microwave on the blocks that are delivered with the HotPot.

These blocks are necessary to elevate the HotPot from the bottom of your microwave.

By using the blocks the generated heat stays in the HotPot.

It prevents thermal conductivity from the HotPot into the microwave and by this protects your microwave against overheating.


After placing the base I put the top part of the HotPot on its base.

I do this at this stage so I can see if the glass layers are still in the way I wanted.


Activate the microwave and run until the piece has been completely fired. Once the process is finished remove the HotPot immediately from the microwave and leave to cool on a heat-proof surface.

A bathroom tile is perfect for this.


There are a number of benefits to using a microwave kiln.

It is significantly cheaper in price than a traditional kiln, and it requires a great deal less energy to operate.


While the firing time varies based on the size and type of the project and by the wattage of the microwave, the process is generally brief, typically achieving fusion in 8 to 12 minutes.


We recommend maintaining a separate microwave dedicated solely to kiln projects.

To minimize the potential for accidents, it generally is recommended that all microwave kiln users thoroughly review manufacturer instructions before kiln use