Clippings by curbdiver1954

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Mirror Mirror on the --------

posted by: dcarch on 12.17.2009 at 05:19 pm in Garden Junk Forum

Just an idea for you guys.

Long time ago, I made an astronomical telescope and I made a mirror by silver coating it.

Looking at all the interesting glass projects that you guys are doing here, you can add a new dimension to your work by mirroring them.

It is not a difficult technique using silver nitrate. There are many instructions if you just Google it.

You can sell your work for a lot more, for those who sell.



clipped on: 12.24.2009 at 07:19 pm    last updated on: 12.24.2009 at 07:19 pm

Butterfly Stake

posted by: becky_ia on 10.09.2009 at 10:12 am in Stained Glass & Mosaics Forum

Hi all,

I must tell you about the butterfly stake. I wish I had thought of it, but I didn't. I was at a Fall Festival Fundraiser a couple of weeks ago.
Rented a spot and set out my wares; this was a fundraiser for an Arboretum and a family fun day. They had tons and tons of free stuff for families to do which was wonderful....but walking through rows of marketers was not what kids wanted to do and sales were very poor.

But anyway, they had a scarecrow auction. There were 80 scarecrows displayed all through the various gardens and you could bid on them. When I was walking through the gardens, I spotted this butterfly stake. IT WAS MAGNIFICANT!

It looks like a 4x4 post painted and bedeckled with jewels and glass pieces with an added porch post top for the head. On the back, is this curved piece, maybe a hula-hoop and cut it in 1/2 and added each 1/2 to the back for the wings. (or pvc pipe-but dont know how they curved it)

Brightly colored pink flowered flowing material was added for wings. This was in the middle of a pink & white cosmos flower bed. So incredibly striking, I HAD to take a picture. I hope to make something like this for my yard. I would like to post her right at the top of my stream next to my gazebo as a focal point to the butterfly garden. Very fitting I think. But I will mosaic the entire post with colored mirror tile. I cant wait to get started.


Butterfly Stake


clipped on: 11.22.2009 at 12:22 pm    last updated on: 11.22.2009 at 12:25 pm

My Lady Beatle

posted by: r_murray on 07.09.2008 at 03:14 pm in Garden Junk Forum

Oh boy this was a quick creation - about 3 hours of actual work over 2 days.

Parts list for My Lady Beatle
1 bicycle helmet
1 food strainer/steamer plate
1 section of a fireplace screen
Several scrap metal rods
6 2" screws
2 3" screws
2 screw post from a bookcase
2 round glass marbles
1 small block of styrofoam (nead)



clipped on: 03.15.2009 at 04:25 pm    last updated on: 03.15.2009 at 04:25 pm

Bird bath

posted by: nanatricia on 08.16.2008 at 11:02 pm in Stained Glass & Mosaics Forum

Here is a bird bath I have been working on I am real proud of it.I made it out of 2 lamp bases .I pured cement in side both of them .I put them to gether with a long steel rod and glued them together.The top is made out of one of those meatel mixing bowl .I coverd it in thin set inside and out .Then I mosaic it .The inside is sg .I made the iland out of cement and glued granetgravel so the birds has something to stand on the bowl is deep.


clipped on: 08.17.2008 at 10:45 am    last updated on: 08.17.2008 at 10:46 am

RE: Planter almost finished and I need help? (Follow-Up #4)

posted by: flagtruck on 07.05.2008 at 04:03 pm in Stained Glass & Mosaics Forum

Okay guys, I use the cheap brand of automotive undercoat that is in automotive dept at walmart. I use this on the inside of a lot of my pots and this coats them good. I also use this product on the inside of a lot of my recycled birdbaths to stop leaks.
I use Tilelab masonry sealer on ALL my pieces, indoors and outdoors. This is available at Home Depot in gallon plastic jugs. You can also get it online thru Home Depot. A lot of the online mosaic suppliers sell this product in a 10 oz bottle for $20+ and you can get a whole gallon at HD for that. By sealing everything, the grout won't dry and dust up indoors and repels water outdoors. I even used this on my backsplash to keep it clean and nice.
Hope this helps...


clipped on: 07.05.2008 at 05:03 pm    last updated on: 07.05.2008 at 05:03 pm

Birdbath and Toad Abode

posted by: slowmedown on 06.23.2008 at 12:51 pm in Stained Glass & Mosaics Forum

Finally finished Shea's BB. For those newbies, this was one of the demonstration items Riana used in the March workshop held in my town. Because my DD gave the artist a ride from DFW to TXANA, she gifted her w/this birdbath. It is made from the diamond mesh/concrete technique. On the third row of photos, one can see all sides of the birdbath. I used the new concrete colorant I bought at Lowes recently, and believe me, that stuff is STRONG. I only used a teensy bit to color the water I used to mix the mortar for the bowl. Waaaay darker than the charcoal I had planned to use. Had to mix about 1/4 cup extra for the edges of the bowl, and I just rinsed the container I had used to mix the colorant w/water, and it is colored the mortar. FYI I probably used about one tablespoon of colorant for about a cup of water to begin with. I was mixing in one of those little Glad plastic containers - about 16 oz size, and had about 1 3/4 cup of gray mortar. I put in the ??cup?? of water/colorant, then begin to add just water. BE CAREFUL using the liquid colorants. It's great, but goes forever. Probably won't have to buy another bottle for years.
Riana Birdbath/Toad Abode


clipped on: 06.23.2008 at 09:12 pm    last updated on: 06.23.2008 at 09:12 pm

RE: styrofoam ball question (Follow-Up #3)

posted by: chickencollecter on 05.17.2008 at 02:59 pm in Stained Glass & Mosaics Forum

I realize this post has been here for awhile, but I'll respond anyway. I've done a number of styrofoam ballswhatever, and yes glues that will hold the mosaic will also eat the styrofoam! I've had no trouble at all by covering the ball or whatever with duct tape first. It works like a champ.


clipped on: 06.08.2008 at 10:53 am    last updated on: 06.08.2008 at 10:53 am

RE: Wet Saw Question (Follow-Up #6)

posted by: slowmedown on 06.08.2008 at 08:49 am in Stained Glass & Mosaics Forum

Use the wet saw to cut plates to make tiles. I cut into the footer, dividing the plate edge into about an inch, depeneding on the design on the rim. Then w/the wheeled nipper dedicated for plates/tiles, I nip them apart, saving the center of the plate. Guide the edge of the center along the blade to smooth/grind it evenly for use as a whole piece or break/cut it up into smaller pieces.


clipped on: 06.08.2008 at 10:30 am    last updated on: 06.08.2008 at 10:30 am

polymer clay tiles for mosaics

posted by: nicethyme on 05.27.2008 at 06:01 pm in Stained Glass & Mosaics Forum

seems like eons ago a GW regular Haziemoon showed her AMAZING celtic stamped PC tiles mmmmmmmmmmmmm

my mouth watered and I asked her every bit of detail on how she did that mmmmm they were beautiful! what she said was go buy Laurie Mika's book on Mixed Media Mosaics! (I wasn't in the position to do that at that time but someone here graciously sent it along to me) another wonderful person shared some things that she no longer used and boyoh did it open my world right up!

now I truely love adding stamped tiles to things I make because I can include my thoughts (inane as they maybe! LOL)

There are way better examples of PC tiles by alot of talented artists, but I'll share with ya all how I do it and you'll see how easy it is to get that look.

polymer clay is that premo, sculpy, fimo.. brands that bake in the oven. each has differing temps and times so be sure and look at the package.

I usually just roll out a bigger piece, stamp then trim but because had to fit as a replacement I cut it to size before stamping.

Now its stamped with the correctly spelled word and you can see there is a bottle of black acrylic paint and a baggy of gold mica dust.

now I painted the clay and then wipe it off so that it remains in the grooves of the stamped letters.



then I dip my finger into the mica and rubb it on the tile


now bake in a covered dedicated pan (only for clay) seal it with 2 coats of Future floor polish. Mask with tape before grouting


clipped on: 06.07.2008 at 10:53 am    last updated on: 06.07.2008 at 10:53 am

RE: Newbie stepping stone betterway to keep glass in place (Follow-Up #1)

posted by: becky_ia on 04.04.2008 at 01:41 pm in Stained Glass & Mosaics Forum

First of all, all your "concerns" are normal...all part of the stepping stone aren't doing anything wrong.

Tiles slipping...what kind of contact paper are you using? You might want to find one that is stickier. I use what I can get at Hobby Lobby and rarely have that problem any more. Also, be sure your glass is clean. If there is any oil from your fingers or from your cutting tool, it can be very slippery.

Seeing edges where paper was...try removing a tad bit sooner from your mold...slightly run some wet cement over the marks, and sorta sand it out.

Concrete covering the glass...again try removing a little quicker. The bleed of concrete won't be so hard to remove.

Hope this helps...are please POST some pictures of your stones! It is spring and we all want to see them!



clipped on: 04.04.2008 at 03:56 pm    last updated on: 04.04.2008 at 03:59 pm

RE: WIP Help disaster strikes (Follow-Up #8)

posted by: slowmedown on 02.03.2008 at 08:46 pm in Stained Glass & Mosaics Forum

Gel medium has very strong adhesive quality, but when we were filling in spaces w/beads in her workshop we used the Paper Glaze. On the label of Golden Gel Medium the uses are: Use for glazing, extending colors, altering sheen, changing body, increasing translucency, gluing collages and increasing film integrity. She uses it in photo transfers by putting the G. medium onto an image, placing it face down on the baked clay tile, burnising it, then start to rub the paper off the the back, leaving the image on the clay tile. You can find the medium in the artists paint section of Michaels. The brand name is Golden.


clipped on: 02.04.2008 at 08:34 am    last updated on: 02.04.2008 at 08:34 am

RE: WIP Help disaster strikes (Follow-Up #3)

posted by: slowmedown on 02.03.2008 at 05:45 pm in Stained Glass & Mosaics Forum

I have trouble grouting beads/pearls also. Why not put in the space a mixture of your adhesive plus your grout and just sink the pearls into it w/gentle pressure so you don't have to grout? That's what I used to add beads to my bathroom wall where the old tiles were put back in and I hadn't gone far enough w/the tesserae. Laurie uses Aleen's Paper Glaze to glue in her beads in spaces between her tiles. I use it too, and it works wonderfully. It dries clear and has a very fine point on the bottle for easy dispensing, should you deside against adhesive/grout mixture. It's beautiful, BTW.


clipped on: 02.03.2008 at 05:51 pm    last updated on: 02.03.2008 at 05:52 pm

sea turtle done

posted by: yell_rose on 12.28.2007 at 11:17 am in Stained Glass & Mosaics Forum

This was done on a board that was painted blue, with various clear and blue glass. Since taking this picture, I've redone the turtle grout with tan paint. It's much better! But I don't have it here any more to take another picture.


clipped on: 01.24.2008 at 08:23 pm    last updated on: 01.24.2008 at 08:24 pm

RE: some mushrooms done - instructions (Follow-Up #15)

posted by: lyndalu on 03.25.2007 at 01:28 pm in Stained Glass & Mosaics Forum

squirrley - I love your mushroom, too! Love the way you used the long pieces to mosaic the stem - looks great!

Mine were made from a concrete mix over various objectsI used a recipe from a book by Sherri Warner Hunter a Basic Sand Mix, which is 1 part Portland cement, 3 parts sand and approximately 1 part water. Im still very much a beginner at making concrete structures, but Ive got both of Sherri Warner Hunters books, and they have been very helpful to me.

On the 4 that look kind of like "button" mushrooms - I put the mix over a regular sized light bulb (light bulb covered in plastic wrap).

On the more elongated ones, I used a 6 oz yogurt container and put the mix over it, putting enough mix on the "top" (which of course is the bottom of the container), so that the top is more rounded, rather than flat. Oh, and I didnt try to "unmold" itthe plastic container is still in there.

For the stems on those 2 types, I took a piece of Styrofoam, and whittled it into the desired shape, stuck a long nail into the bottom, and then covered it with the mix. After a couple of days curing time for the cap and stem, I attached the stems to the caps by inserting the stem into the cap and pushing the mix all around it. After the concrete had fully cured, I painted the stems.

The taller lavender one was made over a glass bowl (covered in plastic wrap), with the mix over it.

The stem on the lavender one is a bud vase with the concrete mix over it. And the cap just sits on top of the bud vase its not attached.

And here's another type I'm working on. As a base, I used this metal thing - it's something from some type of light fixture. Thought the result might look a little like a portobello mushroom.


I haven't had any problems with them falling over in the wind....and we've had some pretty good wind recently. You're right - I did choose bud vases that were pretty wide on the bottom, so I'm sure that helps. Also, when I placed them in the flower beds, I pushed the mulch aside and set them solidly in the dirt, then pushed the mulch up to them again.

Mine were made from a concrete mix over various objectsI used a recipe from a book by Sherri Warner Hunter a Basic Sand Mix, which is 1 part Portland cement, 3 parts sand and approximately 1 part water.

clipped on: 11.11.2007 at 03:39 pm    last updated on: 12.27.2007 at 01:43 pm

RE: flipflop frame (Follow-Up #4)

posted by: chickeemama on 12.22.2007 at 12:55 pm in Stained Glass & Mosaics Forum

Those are adorable.

SHADES- that is a cute idea to put them across you deck house wall. Definitely put it on your to do list!!!!

I might have a patter for this if anyones interested. Seems it came in one of my stained glass pattern stuff. Im sure it can be resized to make our dh cut some out for us. I also put a link to my photobucket site in case you cant copy it from here.
flipflop pattern

Here is a link that might be useful: flipflop pattern


clipped on: 12.23.2007 at 03:55 pm    last updated on: 12.23.2007 at 03:56 pm

My MIrror - step by step .... almost done !

posted by: toomuchglass on 12.15.2007 at 08:21 pm in Stained Glass & Mosaics Forum

Since I've been snowed in today ... I've been a busy bee.
This mirror is so hard to photograph - and being abstract - you probably can't make heads or tales of it .. but here goes .......

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

The 1/8" plywood cut out with the pattern drawn on it

***All the mirror pieces have the back sprayed before gluing .

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

** All the large solid pieces glued on ...

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

And the mosaiced glass and doo dads glued on .....

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

All ready to grout tomorrow ! I'm on a roll ~~~~~~~ thanks to the snow storm !



clipped on: 12.15.2007 at 08:26 pm    last updated on: 12.15.2007 at 08:26 pm

WIP - Terracotta pot

posted by: lyndalu on 07.23.2007 at 01:25 pm in Stained Glass & Mosaics Forum

I did something a little different on this terracotta pot. On the standard terracotta pots that have the "lip" at the top did ya ever wish it was just smooth all the way down and you didnt have to deal with the 2 different levels? Ive seen some very pretty ways to deal with it and they even look great with the lip painted instead of mosaicd (just recently Bama and Rosie did beautiful painting techniques on the tops of their pots) but I bought some bigger pots recently (during a great sale) and I came up with something to resolve this.I put a coating of concrete starting just under the lip, and then smoothing it out towards the middle of the pot. Like this:

Im using these dishes. I absolutely love these colors, and the design on the plates, and have been so anxious to use them. Oh, and BEST PART they are a dream to cut!! The breaks are clean, very little chipage. They are just great. They are LYNNS china I have found some other beautiful patterns by Lynns, and they have always been easy to nip.

As I cut the pieces, I kept them "together" because I wanted at least part of it to keep the design from the plates, mugs, etc. I used the mugs at the top. And the rest so far are the big plates. Ive got some solid blues, greens, yellow and some coordinating glass globs as well. This is what it looks like so far. Its 14 inches tall, and 18 inches wide at the top.


clipped on: 12.15.2007 at 01:48 pm    last updated on: 12.15.2007 at 01:49 pm

RE: Help on Making Jewlery Christmas Tree??? (Follow-Up #1)

posted by: honeysuckleridge on 09.28.2006 at 06:26 pm in Crafts and Decorations Forum

Please have the jewelry valued before using it for one of these projects. You wouldn't believe how much some of the costume jewelry is worth these days. I collect and create the "Jeweled Trees/Creations" I love the kitchey aspect of them.
Very easy to do.
Plywood(I use everything from 8x10-12x16 depends on the amount of jewelry)Foam core is too light weight for this project.
Frame is optional(pick one up at a yard sale/thrift store etc..and have your wood cut to fit)
Fabric to cover wood
Thumb tacks
E6000 glue
Jewelry(all backs removed)
large tweezers
paitience and fun

cover wood with fabric,so the fabric is very taut.(Some folks use Christmas lights in theirs but I'm not crazy about that version.)
Thumb tacks and string to map out your shape(remove this when shape has been completed with jewelry)
Layout your jewelry before glueing it down make sure that each piece fits just so. Remove backs before laying it out,saves lots of time and energy.
Then go for rules just lots of fun and creativity.

I've added a link to show you some of my work and 57-67

good luck and have fun!!

Here is a link that might be useful: Examples of Jeweled Creations


clipped on: 11.30.2007 at 05:27 pm    last updated on: 11.30.2007 at 05:27 pm

GOG window done - different technique

posted by: yellow-rose on 11.23.2007 at 11:39 am in Stained Glass & Mosaics Forum

I've finished my window and as promised here is a different techniqe.,,HGTV_3258_2219550,00.html

There are a few things I will add. I tape the pattern to my work surface and then the contact is taped over that. This holds it down if I put the glass back up, recut and reposition. Be sure you check the base glass against the cut glass for size. If you don't have a grinder, you can't recut it! You can grind after it is grouted. The best part is to use a 1/16" notched trowel for the silicone, this puts on t

he right amount, little to no cleaning! After it is glued, slide it onto something flat, turn it over and press the glass down. Be sure to wait till dry to remove contact paper. Here is the wip and the finished window. Hope this help some and give you some new ideas!!
Sorry it screwed up - haven't got the time to fix it.


clipped on: 11.23.2007 at 12:33 pm    last updated on: 11.24.2007 at 10:01 am

Tutorial 4 craftylady morton diamonds

posted by: chickeemama on 10.28.2007 at 08:32 pm in Stained Glass & Mosaics Forum

Ok here goes...I am not a teacher but I will try!!!! This will be for a 60 degree diamond.

1. I am assuming you already have your strip of glass cut..if not cut a strip of glass to your desired width. Your bar lock will go into hole 16 on the right side of the cutting bar. To do other angles look on page 5. of your booklet

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Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

2. You need to cut a piece of scrap off the glass to make your first 60 degree angle. DONT THROW THIS PIECE AWAY. I have marked my piece with a "T" so you can see where the top is.

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Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

3. Now this is the tricky part..turn the piece of scrap over, bring down the cutting gauge on the cutting bar and place the glass as shown. You can now see the "T" through the backside of the glass. Place your Glass stop in the hole closest to the piece of scrap and tighten down so the scrap is sitting against the glass stop and against the cutting gauge. Move cutting gauge back up to top of the cutting bar. Remove piece of scrap glass.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

4. Put your strip of glass back under the cutting bar, with first 60 degree angle facing to the left. Cut your first diamond. If the first diamond placed on the glass strip (sorry no pic for this) is wider adjust the glass stop to the right. If the strip is wider adjust to the left.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

I hope this makes it a little clearer!!!!!


clipped on: 10.29.2007 at 09:06 pm    last updated on: 11.20.2007 at 10:24 pm

RE: I've read, but still haven't tackled...grouting (Follow-Up #4)

posted by: silvamae on 11.12.2007 at 12:16 pm in Stained Glass & Mosaics Forum

It is not "involved." However, it IS intimidating until you jump in and do it. Here are my observations and tips . . .

I myself use sanded grout, and I mix it with Acrylic Mortar Admix instead of water because I think it makes it stronger, BUT you can just use water. Mix the grout with the liquid so that it makes a thick paste sort of like cooked oatmeal. If you get it too thin, add more grout. If you get it too thick, add more liquid. Simple! Mix until it is all mixed up smoothly. Take a little bit and apply it to your item. Smoosh it in with your hand. Press, drag, push it around. Your goal is to make the grout flow under all the tesserae and fill all the gaps. I wear gloves for this! I buy them at the grocery store, the home health latex gloves. Okay, so smush, smoosh, etc. all over (if it's a small piece). Then I drag my gloved fingers and/or a popsicle stick across everything and take off most of the excess grout.

Then I take a rectangular sponge, dipped in a bucket of water and squeezed until you can't get any more water out of it. Lightly drag the sponge across the piece. Now imagine you are grouting a tiled floor. The square tiles are lined up across the floor in rows. You would drag the damp sponge across the tiles at an angle. This helps to not dish out too much grout. Of course if you have various sizes and shapes of tesserae as most of us do, you won't exactly be able to drag the sponge at an angle. Just be aware of your goal, which is to clean off the tesserae without digging out too much grout. But say you do cause a dip in the grout. Just add more grout and smooth it. You can also gently pat the grout with the sponge. You can wet a small cosmetic brush and gently brush the grout to fine-tune it.

Let it stand and dry for about twenty minutes and then go back to it again. This time I use an old wash cloth, wet but wrung out well. I use one finger under the wash cloth to polish each piece individually.

As to color, I myself prefer "Sandstone." My next two preferences are "Antique White" and "Pewter." I don't use black because it's so hard to clean up (but I like the look of it).

On a large piece, you can grout in sections. This makes it so much easier and less intimidating. Say for instance I am grouting a birdhouse. I might grout only the bottom or only the roof today, then do the rest some other day.

Really, after you jump in and do it, you may just dread grouting in the future because it is so messy, not difficult to do.

Do Not let grout go down your sink drain. If possible, grout outside. I usually grout indoors and I spread lots of newspaper. I tape the corners down so it doesn't slide around and distract me. I have several containers of water around so that I can dip and rinse my sponges in clean water. For cleanup, I carry the containers outside and toss the water on the ground, fold the newspapers up and put in the garbage. If you live in an apartment or where you can't toss the grout water outside, then let the container sit for awhile until the grout settles to the bottom, then carefully pour the water down the drain and wipe the bottom of the container with paper towels.

I have never been able to save grout once it's mixed with liquid. So mix up a little more than you need and throw the rest away.

Last thing. Don't leave the final cleanup until the next day. Once grout hardens, it takes a lot of elbow grease to clean off. So allow enough time for grouting, and if possible, grout when you won't be interrupted.

Good luck!


clipped on: 11.12.2007 at 03:52 pm    last updated on: 11.16.2007 at 07:00 pm

RE: Mosaicked headstones and/or markers (Follow-Up #7)

posted by: mosaicwench1 on 02.18.2007 at 12:48 pm in Stained Glass & Mosaics Forum

I was very intrigued by this thread so I did some more surfing and found these:



clipped on: 11.15.2007 at 06:03 pm    last updated on: 11.15.2007 at 06:03 pm

RE: an alternative to BBs (Follow-Up #1)

posted by: klinger on 05.21.2007 at 01:43 am in Stained Glass & Mosaics Forum

I've got those molds and they are really good. I find a super easy way to make spheres is just to use the round glass light fixtures that were so common in many homes. I find them at the thrift stores for a quarter often. Don't worry abut lubricating them, just put the cement mix in, vibrate it lightly to remove air bubbles and let cure for a week or so. Then put it in a plastic bag and use a hammer to break the light fixture off. You can use all shapes of light fixtures to make interesting cement objects,


More info in this thread....look up by date 5-21-2007
clipped on: 10.17.2007 at 06:44 pm    last updated on: 10.17.2007 at 06:44 pm

This Week's Mosaic Stepping Stone Projects

posted by: haziemoon on 11.03.2006 at 12:41 am in Garden Junk Forum

I spent most of the week cutting glass for these stepping stones.

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

This next one is a huge WIP. It's inspired by Slow's path WIP. I fell in love with that! So this my first of 6 tile stepping stones for a new path, that will be mosaic'd
on the sides around the stepping stones. Sad thing is I may only get to do the stepping stones for now, and the path may have to wait till spring.That's going to kill me!!haha.
If the weather holds, I may just go for it!
This one hasn't been grouted yet...just finished it tonight, still waiting for the mastic to dry.
I loved Slow's path.....and I feel the need for it now while I'm inspired! Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting
What is really tough right now, is my 12 year old's birthday is tomorrow, and we have a full day planned, then saturday she's having a huge party here. So since I work in the dininig room, I have to totally clean up, and move everything to the garage! What a J.O.B that's going to be! It's time for the guestroom to get redone! (again)...
tile floor and counters!



clipped on: 11.03.2006 at 09:48 am    last updated on: 11.03.2006 at 09:48 am

RE: Pic of My October POTM (Follow-Up #10)

posted by: wackyweeder on 10.15.2006 at 12:20 pm in Garden Junk Forum

genius! Down the street from me I saw someone had bought about 6 of those dollar plastic pumpkin treat buckets, stacked them up after cutting out the bottoms, like a totem and lit them up. it was cute, they all had different faces.


clipped on: 10.15.2006 at 01:20 pm    last updated on: 10.15.2006 at 01:20 pm

Using Silicone Caulk as a Mold Material

posted by: Nofu on 12.12.2004 at 05:38 pm in Hypertufa Forum

I was reading the back posts and saw that some of you have been using silicone caulk for making molds. I have been working with a variety of silicones for some time and thought I'd post some information that might be helpful.

There are three basic types of silicone. The first two are two-part silicones which must be measured and mixed just prior to use.

1) Platinum cure (addition) silicones are extremely pure and can produce extremely accurate molds that last indefinately. They are used for medical and theatrical prosthetics, medical equipment, cookware, candy molds, and baby bottle nipples. Unfortunately, these are also the touchiest of the silicones to work with and their cure can be hindered by moisture, sulfur, latex, tin, loud cursing and bad hairstyles.

2) Tin cure (condensation) silicones are commonly used as a mold making material for art and industry. They are not approved for long term contact with the skin, or for cookware or other food contact, though some are used in making seals for potable water supplies. It is also long lasting and makes accurate molds with a life of several years. They are still very stable and safe compounds for a wide variety of applications. They will cure underwater and actually require some moisture in their chemical process. In fact, there is very little that will inhibit the cure of a condensation silicone.

3) The remaining class is one-part, self curing silicones like caulking and aquarium sealant. They are a variant of tin cure and are sold in air-tight tubes. These are further divided into two subclasses based on their catalyst:
a) Acetoxy - these are the typical ones you will find at your home centers etc. They have a strong vinegar (acetic acid) odor while curing.
b) Oxime - are referred to as odorless cure silicones and can be found in some building supply stores but are usually more expensive.

The biggest problems with using silicone caulking for molds is that it is rather thick and easily traps air, and that it will not cure properly in very thick applications. These can both be remedied in the same way.

The reason they won't cure in thick layers is that they require the moisture in air to cure. Thick layers develop an air-tight skin, effectively resealing the caulking underneath. In applications more than 1/4 inch thick, you can often come back days later and the underside will still be soft (if it is against a non-water bearing material like plasticine clay) or will cure from both sides and have a pocket of goo in the middle.

The way to solve this problem is to get some moisture throughout the silicone. You can't just mix in water, it won't mix well and you'll end up with a mess. The two products I have found that work best are glycerine (available at any pharmacy or in the health and beauty department of most chain stores) and acrylic (not oil) artists or craft paint.

Start with clear 100% silicone caulk, like GE I or GE II, or DAP 100% Silicone Caulk. Squeeze out the amount you will need into a plastic cup that is large enough to give you stirring room. For each ounce of caulk, add four or five drops of glycerine and a drop of acrylic paint. Use a wooden craft stick to stir until you get a uniform color trying to avoid trapping any more air than necessary.

You can use just the acrylic paint, but I like adding the glycerine because it improves the cure and also reduces the adhesive qualities of the silicone, making it easier to remove from the model. You could also do this with just the glycerine, but it is more difficult to tell when you have obtained a uniform blend.

Don't overdo it with either the acrylic or the glycerine as more than a few drops per ounce will result in a weaker end product. You cannot thin caulking with these materials without sacrificing a lot of the good characteristics of the silicone.

Once you get a uniform color, you have from 15 minutes to an hour before the product begins to thicken, depending on the temperature and humidity. Working in a cool dry environment will extend your application window. If you are outdoors in southern Florida, in August, work fast.

Adequate cure for handling should take under two hours and it will cure evenly throughout, rather than from the surface inward. Again, heat and humidity will speed things up.

I like to brush on a thin layer first, getting out all the air bubbles and making sure you have good contact everywhere. Then a thicker coat can be spatulated on. Usually about 1/4 inch works for palm sized items, but you can go up to an inch for very large works.

Once the silicone has cured, you can make a support shell out of plaster bandages applied a couple of layers thick. This "mother" mold will hold the flexible silicone in place during casting. Again, the bigger the mold, the thicker the mother.

Though it is probably not necessary, I like to give my newly made molds overnight to finish curing before I start casting in them.

If you feel you need to thin silicone caulking, xylene is the solvent of choice, but work outdoors and protect yourself from the vapors, they can cause health problems, so read the label. Mineral spirits will also work, but weaken the material and leave it with a greasy feel. Mineral spirits will also slow the cure from hours to possibly days.
Also, volatile solvents will result in shrinkage of the finished mold in proportion to the amount of solvent added to the silicone.

I personally like dry mold releases rather than greasy ones. For porous materials like plaster, I like to buff in several coats of Johnson's paste wax, leaving only a micro thin layer on the surface and then allowing it to completely haze over before making the mold.
For non-pourous surfaces, like glass, I take Ivory dish soap and mix it 1:3 with distilled water. Use a soft artist's brush and swish the sudsy mix over the surface of the model while drying with a blow drier in the other hand. The result should be a thin soap film that is relatively dry to the touch.
Petroleum jelly (Vasoline) will also work, but is messy to clean up. I don't like PAM or other cooking sprays.
Silicone sprays make great mold releases for everything EXCEPT silicone. They tend to become part of the mold and may actually increase adhesion.
Also avoid petroleum based lubricating sprays. They are messy and make it difficult to brush the silicone over the surface evenly.
For really difficult releases, there is a material called PVA (polyvinyl alcohol) sold in craft stores that sell acrylic casting kits used for making clear paperweights and such. Brush it on, let it dry, and then apply a thin film of paste wax. If that won't release it, nothing will.
PVA is soluable in water, so don't try to use the soap film for the secondary release.

When making a cast in a silicone mold, a release often isn't necessary as not much sticks to silicone, except more silicone. If you feel you must use a release anyway, silicone spray lube, soap, paste wax, or PVA will all work.


clipped on: 09.02.2006 at 11:34 pm    last updated on: 09.02.2006 at 11:34 pm

Anyone like rusting stuff?

posted by: sweets98 on 06.06.2006 at 12:06 pm in Garden Junk Forum

I read about a really simple technique on another board I go to and I have been using it like mad! Take the item you want to rust and spray brown spray paint on it. While it's still wet, like almost right away, sprinkle cinnamon on it. Let dry and then you can either just spray with clear spray sealer to seal it or I tend to re-spray with the brown and then later seal with clear. You can actually still smell the cinnamon even with the spray paint over it. It's a little different smell but it still smells good. :)


Can also use black spray paint
clipped on: 06.06.2006 at 07:03 pm    last updated on: 06.06.2006 at 07:04 pm