Diary of a Demented Store Owner

Monday, 30 November 2009

Bullseye Rods Great for Fusing Too!

Yup, it's true!
Fantasy In Glass is still the only source in Canada if you want to buy every colour of torchworking rod made by Bullseye. These rods are all manufactured from Bullseye's fusible sheet glass so their compatibility is assured (90 c.o.e.), something that is not always the case with other manufacturers (can't we all just get along?). Used for torchworking and kilnforming, each rod is approximately 17" (43 cm) long and 4-6 mm in diameter and includes a selection in excess of 110 colours. And now, Bullseye's Rod line is now graded for kilnforming. Though Bullseye’s glass rods were originally developed for flameworking, they can also be used in the kiln, and doing so opens new technical and aesthetic territory—territory that is still very much under exploration. Used alone or incorporated with other forms of glass in kilnforming methods, rods can become more than simple dots and lines—creating lenses, interior textures, patterns, and temperature-sensitive optical phenomena.

Last year when Bullseye developed five new opaque rod styles that were not suitable for kilnwork, they began systematically testing all of their rods for fusibility now confirming that all but 17 of their rod styles can be used reliably in kilnwork. (All rod styles can be used reliably in torchwork.)
The 17 non-fusible "T" styles include:

• 4 Opals: Dense White (0313); Pink Opal (0301); Salmon Pink Opal (0305); Gold Purple (0334)
• 6 Opaques: All but White Opaque (0013), which is fusible.
• 4 (All) Lustres
• 3 (All) Streakies

Here's somef useful links related to using Bullseye's Rods:
Torchtips and Kilnforming with Rod, their full-line catalogue, and if you want to try a project using their rods, then go here.
and here's some helpful stuff for fusers of their sheet glass:
Glass Tips, Bubble Control, a simple plate project using their Tints glass line, why BU0146 turns silver and how to take advantage of that effect (see our samples), and as always, when firing your glass good detailed notes are imperative- go here for a form.

Thursday, 26 November 2009

Reality Check

The current situation with cost of supplies in Canada;
Oct. 15, 2008- (dollar at .845 cents)- surcharge at OOCSGS is 7.9%
Nov. 23, 2009- (dollar at .946)- surcharge at OOCSGS is 6.8%...

Mikey's Music Pick of the Month

If you've been in the store and have seen the battle that goes on between Mikey and Pat for the volume control on the stereo you now know that we have definitive proof that Pat is much much older than Mikey. Yes, music can be distracting at times, and no, that's not a bad thing. Music should affect you, and good music (which is only what we play) should deeply affect you. Mikey's latest discovery is the latest (I hate the term CD- truly good sounding music is analogue) from Ramblin' Jack Elliott, called A Stranger Here. Working with producer Joe Henry (Bettye LaVette, Solomon Burke, Elvis Costello/Allen Toussaint), the 77 year old Elliott sings and plays acoustic guitar, and is backed by a stellar collection of musicians handpicked by Henry, among them Van Dyke Parks and David Hidalgo (Los Lobos).
Revered for his interpretive take on traditional American music, on A Stranger Here, Elliott steps out of the country/folk arena that has shaped his legend, 50+ years in the making. Haunting and evocative landscapes crafted by Henry construct a mood that is enhanced by Elliott's world-scarred voice. Together, musician and producer examine a carefully selected number of pre-WWII blues songs in a wholly unique way.,
Procured from
mymusic.com, now in heavy rotation at FIG...

Mikey Answers Another Question From Gary

“Hey Mikey, how come you can see through glass?” asks Gary Brun.

Wow, how about starting with something simpler like how come the Leafs suck? But, I understand that I do have a job to do, Gary...

The reason you can see through glass basically is that there is no reason that you can’t. Despite its appearance, glass is a highly viscous liquid rather than a solid, and you can see through it for the same reasons that you can see through water.

Coming up with such an admirably simple answer, Mr. Brun, allow me to expand a bit further. You are welcome to get your teacher, friends or family to write me further should this not make much sense to you. Most liquids, when cooled, have a freezing point at which they suddenly become solid. Glass, by contrast, simply gets gradually stiffer as it cools. At room temperature its rate of flow is so slow that it would take billions of years to ooze out of shape, and for most practical purposes it may be treated as a solid. See
here for more...

Its internal structure, though, is not the regular crystalline latticework of your standard solid, but rather is basically random, like the typical liquid. As with many liquids, the rather loosely spaced molecules in glass are simply not big enough to obstruct the passage of light particles (see my paper on the properties of glass

Furthermore, (a) there are no footloose electrons in glass to reflect light, as with metals; (b) the energy levels of the individual atoms in glass are not such that they absorb light in the visible spectrum, although they will absorb infrared and ultraviolet; and (c) there are no internal boundaries or discontinuities in glass as there are in ordinary crystal solids to refract light, which would cause some light to be lost to internal reflection. (Glass reflects light only at its external boundaries-- that is, the boundary between the glass and the surrounding air, or whatever. This permits refraction to be precisely controlled, which is what makes eyeglasses, and optics in general, possible.) In short, the reason you can see through glass is that there is no reason for you not to be able to see through it.
That is all...

Thursday, 19 November 2009

The Bad One

So, we grow up, marry, have kids, and they suck the life right out of you.
Zenia (the bad one) is conferring tomorrow.
That means that she has graduated from a university (allegedly of some repute) and gets to wear the hat and make her proud parents all gushy.
As such, we will be closed tomorrow to witness said occasion (her dad can hardly believe it).
Sorry, and thank you.
As we might expect, the picture is an affirmation of how seriously a higher education has affected her.
We'll be over it Friday night, ready to open on Saturday.

Thursday, 5 November 2009

Need a Plug?

Christmas Craft Show, Sat. November 21 and Sunday Nov. 22, 9am to 1 pm, at St. Gregory's Catholic Church, 122 Rathburn Rd (at Kipling) in Toronto. See Irene Geras and her work there.

Wednesday, 4 November 2009

Stained Glass News #87 In!

In SGN #87, you'll find:

• new items, including: pattern books, pattern CD's, new key finders, a new saw blade, black patina, fusing molds, fusing kilns, a new sander/grinder, some new glass and fusible pre-cut shapes.
• reader hints, a reader's workshop and more on "The Readers' Page"
Kiln Crafting Gil Reynolds—Gil answers questions about Carmen's Wall Pocket Vase

Health and Safety Fleming Fallon—Protecting Your Hands and Feet in Your Studio
The Beadmakers' Corner Andie Kosak—Stp-By-Step Star (Stacked Dot) Bead
SGN Classic Column Carolyn Kyle—Design it Your Way, Part 3
• this issue's Free Pattern: Victorian Candle by Kimberlee Lynch
• a page of photos from readers in The Readers' Gallery
• and more…