Stained Glass: Palm Tree Part Five
The window is finished. Now all that needs to be accomplished is installation – but that must wait until the rain quits.
Day five of building the stained glass window was the real meat of the project. All the pieces came together on this day, making the final product.
First, I aligned all of the pieces and fastened them in place with thumbtacks. I reused a piece of particle board as my base for its smooth, flat surface and giving texture. I’m glad I kept my template draft, because I needed it to help me put this puzzle back together.
After everything was put into place, I brushed flux all over the copper foil. Flux helps keep your solder bead smooth and allows the metal to run gently along the metallic tape. It does create quite a mess.
Once the whole thing has been fluxed, I tack soldered each of the pieces to its neighbors. This part goes quickly. You just gently lay a small bead of solder on each of your lines. Once this is done, you can safely unfasten the window and gently move it around.
The next step is beading. The beading process is the real fun of making foiled stain glass. Gently and with some precision, you run your solder and soldering iron along the copper foil. This leads to a smooth line of solder that fastens the window together. It’s hot work, but with a steady hand it goes quickly. One tip – don’t linger on any one piece of glass too long. Temperature causes glass to expand and contract; a lingering iron can fracture a piece.
Once you finish one side, flip the whole thing over, flux and bead again. I finished this window with channeled hobby lead. I used a double sided channel because I want the finished window to be caulked into place. The hobby lead also give a bit of strength to the overall piece.
A little soap and water cleans of the flux and results in a sparkling piece. Hopefully the trees will be installed this week.
Pretty amazing considering that a week before it started as this.