|Strips of a dichroic pattern called Corkscrew on clear – #551675.||Magenta dichroic on clear – #553515 showing both reflected color and transmitted color .|
I have been lampworking dichroic glass for the past 18 years and I am thoroughly addicted to it and I thought I would pass on some of the techniques I use to get positive results when using this unique glass.
All the strips we sell at Frantz Art Glass have been pre-annealed to make the strips easier to handle when putting them in and out of the flame. I discovered a long time ago that pre-annealing the dichroic strips eliminated most of the heat shock that the strips go through when they are pulled in and out of the flame. If the strips are not pre-annealed, you can lose as much as an inch of the dichroic strip from heat shock every time you put a used strip into the flame and this can add up to a lot of inches of dichroic. I have even tried to reuse the parts of the dichroic strip that popped off from heat shock and I found that when I stick the piece back into the flame, it explodes into tiny fragments.
The pre-annealed strips also make it a whole lot easier to tell which side of the dichroic on clear actually has the dichroic crystals on it. This is important because if you are using a oxygen/propane torch, the flame is too hot to use the dichroic strip with the crystal side up and exposed to the flame.
When I use dichroic in an oxygen/propane flame, I use the dichroic on clear with the crystals placed down on the bead core which automatically makes an encasement over the dichroic crystals. This saves the crystals and time because I don’t have to apply any extra glass over the dichroic to protect it.
Another good tip for working with dichroic on clear, is to have a graphite pad set by your torch and lay all the dichroic strips or pieces you are going to use with the crystal side placed down on the graphite. The black graphite gives you a good surface to view the reflective color of the dichroic strips and with all the strips placed crystals down; you know for sure which side of the dichroic you are putting into the flame.
If you want to work with the dichroic crystals up to get a super metallic look, check out the blog I did about using dichroic on a Hot Head torch. Click Here.
Frantz Art Glass is also putting my DVD on making dichroic beads on sale for 50% off the retail price which is called “Making Dichroic Beads with Pat Frantz” – #231545.
Below is a video segment from “Making Dichroic Beads with Pat Frantz” that shows me making a large two color dichroic tabular bead with a goldstone zig zag design between the two color.
If you have ever been interested in dichroic glass, this is the time to take the leap and get you feet wet. Dichroic glass is beautiful and fun!